Sunday

Rent-a-taxi service we have all heard of.

A cab service by the women for the women? Well..Bombay has this unique 24-hour car hire service, which when contrasted to the likes of the black and yellow or even the Cool Cabs makes for a pleasant change. This is a cab service ONLY for the women folk - a very novel idea indeed.

The sliver-white cars with a purple pink logo are chauffeured by women dressed in purple and pink too. This is an exclusive for women cab service on the lines of Dubai’s “Women’s Taxi”, UK’s “Pink Ladies” and Moscow’s “Pink Taxi”. The taxi interiors are clean, functional, have glossy;s thrown in, a comments book, and a fully working Air conditioner!

When I spoke with the lady driver A, she said to me it’s not only safety concerns that have prompted the move of such a concept in Bombay, it’s a need, when women sit in a taxi, they don't feel comfortable — it’s everything from hygiene to the driver gawking at you in the mirror to the attitude and behaviour of rudeness and belligerence one has to put up with especially given that you don't seek a free ride in the black and yellow! in fact I know of some colleagues who arrive by the last flight into the city late night, and hire a cab frm the airport, often pretend to be on mobile phones when alone with male drivers to create a feeling of safety.

It is an acute contrast in this new taxi fleet — English speaking women graduates driving you around the city, as you paint your nails or curl up with a magazine, or simply chat with the lady driver in a friendly manner - The cars are colour branded to ensure women are not picked up by bogus drivers and all of the company’s drivers are female, uniformed and trained in self-defense and first aid too.

To protect the drivers and female passengers, this company operates a “through the door” policy, which means passengers are safely inside their destination address before their driver leaves. I know I feel terribly unsafe walking the distance from the road to my door step when I alight from a normal cab especially if it is at a late hour

I must say I was impressed with the quality of driving, there was no iffiness to it, the cars were well maintained and above all there was basic social graces that were in place and made the experience very comfortable.

9 comments:

Ajay Jain said...

This is unique.

What is your take on other all women's services at hotels, restaurants, airlines, trains, buses etc? Are there any you have come across across the world?

Cheers... Ajay

Anand Balaji said...

definitely a cool idea. think there should be a market for this in India beyond Bombay!

Any idea how easy/difficult it is for the women drivers themselves? I'm sure waiting in airports, etc along with the rest of the drivers is not easy on them

anil said...

This service called, Forsche, is owned by a bengali lady...her story is full of grit and determination...she launched this service with-in two months of her husband's death...then I think she also lost her mother pretty soon after launch...and finances were hard to come-by...even the brand who supposedly 'care' for women professionals or have women centric products shied away from funding the venture...she and her staff were continuously harassed and hassled by black& yellow taxi guys at airport...they infact threatened her of dire consequences...

but now she is doing pretty well...private equity funds have come on board...fleet has expanded...

cheers to such ventures!

anil

Neelu said...

fantastic. mee, text me the number pleease!

Mee said...

have had too many requests for the details so here goes: if I remember right - they are called forsche - the numbr is 022-44333222

Shruti said...

This is definitely heartening and empowering. While my thoughts also went to what Anand says, I reconciled thinking that all of us women at some point of time have experienced prejudices when we have started something in what is largely seen as a male bastion. So my whole hearted support to this group and a big vote of confidence to the lady who started it- this is what a few good people can do if they set their minds to it!Cheers to women power.

ALLEX said...

wow,a unique service!
This will soon spraed to rest of the cisties also i feel.... so that this industry does not reamin as a male dominated one anymore...... loved to hear of the facts and seriously want to experience this.

Luis Portugal said...

Hello
It has a nice blog.
Sorry not write more, but my English is bad writing.
A hug from my country, Portugal

Shiran said...

Now this is what foxes me, on one hand we have a service like this...ingenious concept and progressive, on the other hand we have the happenings in Mangalore and Bangalore...I guess we truely are a country of contrasts
I for one, cant wait for it to come to my city