The rise in fuel prices has forced Finnish taxi companies to raise their prices. Finland’s largest taxi company, Taxi Helsinki, has announced that it will increase its starting fee by one euro and the price based on travel time by ten cents per minute from Thursday.
The Taxi Exchange Center Local Taxi has also announced plans to raise fares by an estimated 5 percent in mid-April.
Fuel prices in the country have risen steadily in recent months, and the average price of diesel per liter rose from 1.78 euros in January to 1.87 euros in February this year, according to Statistics Finland.
In February 2021 it was EUR 1.44 and in February 2010 it was EUR 1.06. The average price of diesel peaked in March at more than 2.3 euros per liter.
"There would be further pressure to raise prices, but consumer prices cannot directly reflect rising fuel prices or there would be no customers at all." Pasi RokosaThe CEO of a local taxi, explains.
The Social Insurance Institution of Finland, Kela, is currently investigating whether it can increase the compensation for taxi journeys for commuters, as high fuel prices have rapidly raised the costs of transport providers.
Electric cars a potential solution
Finnish taxi companies are considering adding electric cars to their fleet to compensate for the effects of rising fuel prices.
By Teemu Rompannen, the CEO of the taxi company Kovanen, using an electric car instead of a diesel car could halve the cost of energy consumption. The company began operating its first electric taxi on Wednesday and plans to include more in August.
"Interest in electric cars has increased significantly and we are working to electrify our fleet as soon as possible. We do not believe that the rise in energy prices will be reflected as strongly in electricity prices as in diesel," Rompannen states.
Car suppliers are currently unable to meet the demand for electric vehicles from taxi companies.
"Last summer, there were 43 electric taxis in Finland. Now we alone have almost double the number of electric taxis. The number would be higher if we got the cars faster," Kalle Tarpila, Taxi’s interim CEO of Helsinki, says.
According to Tarpila, electric vehicles also help taxi companies reduce maintenance costs by eliminating, for example, oil changes and exhaust pipe cleaning.
According to the local taxi, since last fall, low-emission vehicles have been a priority and are at the top of the list when customers order a taxi from the company via digital platforms.
Source: The Nordic Page