Transport Group Accuses JoyRide of Overcharging its Passengers

Is JoyRide’s upfront tipping feature unfair?
IMAGE Facebook / Joyride

A feature in the JoyRide ride-hailing app that purportedly lets drivers select the passenger that offers the highest bid for a tip has been called “immoral” by a transport group. 

The Coalition for Filipino Commuters (CFC) submitted a formal letter of complaint to the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) alleging that the the “upfront tipping” feature in the JoyRide should not be there and should not be “included nor allowed in the LTFRB's fare matrix for app-based ride-hailing services.”

“It has come to our attention that the company has implemented an upfront tipping and gifting feature on their mobile app, which allows JoyRide drivers to select the highest bidder before they accept the booking,” CFC said in its letter, which was addressed to LTFRB chairperson Teofilo Guadiz III. “This is done in both car and motorcycle taxi services. This practice has a severe impact on commuters, particularly those who cannot afford to pay high upfront tips, as they are less likely to book a ride.

“This feature was already penalized by the LTFRB last June 2022 and was disabled by JoyRide after several commuter complaints,” the letter said further. “In fact, the LTFRB deployed mystery riders last year, and ordered JoyRide to immediately remove this feature from their mobile app.”


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Calling the feature “immoral,” CFC Lead Convenor Ira Panganiban said CFC is disappointed that the feature is fostering ill behaviors for JoyRide drivers, citing complaints that the group has received.  


“As a transportation and commuter advocate, I believe that this practice is a clear violation of the rights of commuters,” Panganbiban said. “Commuters should be able to book a ride without feeling pressured to pay an additional fee to secure a ride. The upfront tipping and gifting feature is discriminatory against those who cannot afford to pay high upfront tips, and it creates an unfair advantage for those who can. This illegal practice goes against the principle of fair and equal access to transportation services.”

The group urged the LTFRB and the technical working group (TWG) on motorcycle taxis to investigate the matter and put an end to the practice.

“JoyRide should be held accountable for their actions and should be required to remove the upfront tipping and gifting feature from their mobile app,” the letter said.

The LTFRB had earlier issued a statement against transport network companies that overcharge its passengers, although it did not name a specific company.

“We do not and we will not tolerate any violation such as overcharging of fares within the public transportation system,” the LTRB said. “The fare matrix was crafted to ensure that the fares charged by all public transport operators from commuters regardless of vehicle type are fair and equitable.” 

JoyRide had yet to issue a reaction to the CFC allegation as of the time of the posting of this story.

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