As the COVID-19 outbreak continues to develop, taxi drivers and private-hire drivers are being affected the most due to low market demand and increased risk of COVID-19 transmission. Since it’s impossible to follow social distancing while driving a taxi, it’s more important than ever to take safety precautions. The local public health department has issued guidelines in accordance with MOH (Ministry of Health) for taxi drivers to prevent the transmission of the novel coronavirus.
Considering the drop in market demand, the government of Singapore has issued financial aid for the self-employed, and most taxi drivers and private-hire drivers will be able to benefit from it. The eligible individuals will receive S$1000 a month for nine months to tide through this unpredictable period. This scheme is in place to aid self-employed personnel such as private-hire drivers, taxi drivers, freelancers, real estate agents, and other independent personnel that meets the criteria and requirements.
Let’s take a look at how COVID-19 is affecting the lives of taxi and private-hire drivers during this pandemic.
Taxi Drivers and Private-hire Drivers Are Looking for New Employment:
Due to the reduced demand during the lockdown, the number of taxi drivers and private-hire drivers had also seen a decline due to insufficient earnings. As the courier and food delivery services have grown in demand due to the lockdown, many private-hire drivers are switching over to food delivery and courier services to get through the day with some earnings.
Some drivers have chosen to explore new employment opportunities as the decrease in earnings from driving is affecting their livelihood. It wasn’t a smooth transition due to the current situation, but many are left with no choice due to the reduced demand in passengers.
COVID-19 Transmission Risk For Taxi Drivers And Private-hire Drivers:
Providing transport services even at the increased risk of COVID-19 transmission is a rising concern and putting the lives of both the drivers and the passengers at risk.
As a precaution and prevention, the government has issued guidelines in accordance with the MOH for the safety of these transportation providers. Taxi drivers and private-hire drivers must plan to clean and disinfect their vehicles as often as possible, wear a face mask, and also consider wearing gloves when collecting money from customers.
Evergreen Group‘s Royale Car Rentals, are taking initiatives to provide affordable car rental options for the public during this COVID-19 situation. This is to assist and help every struggling driver to rent vehicles at a more cost-effective and reasonable rate.
It is not possible to predict when the COVID-19 crisis will finally end. So for essential workers like taxi drivers, taking additional precautions to lower the risk of getting infected by COVID-19 is a must.