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Monday, June 17, 2024

Bangkok Introduces Electric Boat Taxi and Motorcycle Hailing App

In an effort to enhance Bangkok’s transportation network, the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) is gearing up to introduce an on-demand electric boat taxi service in July. This innovative initiative, developed by Krung Thep Thanakom Co (KT), the BMA’s business arm, is poised to coincide with the anticipated city-wide expansion of its motorcycle taxi-hailing service.

The forthcoming boat taxi service, intricately designed to seamlessly integrate with Bangkok’s existing electric rail systems, public buses, and motorcycle taxi services, primarily aims to bolster the city’s tourism sector. KT’s managing director, Tharatporn Techakitkachorn, disclosed that the pilot phase is slated to kick off next month in Khlong Phadung Krung Kasem and its adjacent canals, including Khlong Bang Lamphu.

Once fully operational, the electric boat taxi service will traverse several key canals across Bangkok, notably Khlong Lat Phrao. Passengers will have the convenience of summoning an on-demand boat taxi via a dedicated application tailored for this purpose, with fares calculated based on distance traveled.

Negotiations are currently underway with electric boat manufacturers to finalize the design and pricing of the vessels, with a preference for six- to ten-seat configurations, as revealed by Mr. Tharatporn. The trial service in July will utilize two prototype boats.

Regarding the BMA’s motorcycle taxi-hailing app, presently undergoing pilot testing in four Bangkok districts, it is poised to revolutionize urban commuting. With an estimated 5,000 registered taxi motorcycles and 90,000 individually licensed riders expected to be integrated into the system, passengers will enjoy the ease of securing a ride with just a few taps on their smartphone screens.

Unlike existing motorcycle taxi services predominantly available on delivery service platforms, the BMA’s dedicated hailing app will offer comprehensive coverage across most areas of Bangkok. Mr. Tharatporn emphasized that fare regulations will be diligently enforced by KT, ensuring equitable pricing for commuters.

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