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Tara App: Erwin Dee’s answer to affordable ride-hailing and better driver income

Erwin Dee, a scholar at De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde, has developed Tara, a ride-hailing app that promises to be a “beacon of change,” offering more affordable fares for passengers and higher income for drivers.

In a Facebook post, Dee mentioned that Tara started as a wild idea in December 2022 when he came across a TikTok post lamenting the days when Uber was still in the market, and fares for transport network vehicle services were cheaper. His Facebook post on September 11, 2023, quickly went viral, amassing 57,000 reactions and 27,000 shares since then.

He pondered, “What if I create a ride-hailing app? What if there’s a solution to make fares cheaper again? I have a background in programming, and I have the necessary resources. All I need is the time to make it happen.”

Dee explained that Tara will adhere to the fare matrix established by the Land Transportation Franchising Regulatory Board, and there will be no additional surcharges. Unlike other ride-hailing services, Tara will not levy commissions on drivers, ensuring that the entire fare paid by passengers goes directly to them.

According to Dee, a 20% commission is excessively high, and drivers would benefit more from using that money for essentials like food or gas. Tara’s revenue will primarily come from advertising and subscription fees.

Dee emphasized that the subscription fee is central to their commitment to reducing booking fares for passengers while ensuring fair earnings for drivers.

“By operating on a pay-for-usage principle, we ensure that users pay only for the resources they utilize, making our service exceptionally cost-effective and tailored to their actual needs,” he said.

Additionally, Tara plans to allocate 80% of its advertising revenue for user incentives, such as promo codes for passengers and monthly bonuses for top-performing drivers.

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