The slide pack from the June VB/VE destination research group meeting which contains the research and statistics headlines from VB/VE in one short summary can be accessed below. Regrettably the domestic GBTS item within it is based solely on England’s results. Nonetheless, it’s a useful summary of trends, what’s up what’s down and what’s been recently released in terms of new reports, albeit the publication of the reports mentioned have already been notified to you via previous Britishdestination.net blogs:
Yesterday Uber was granted a 15 month probationary licence to operate in London. This follows their appeal against Transport for London’s refusal to grant a new 5-year licence last September, due to Tfl’s concerns about a number of persistent, serious failings. The ban has been on hold pending the outcome of the appeal.
Hotly contested at first, Uber have since acknowledged all of TfL’s original concerns and claim latterly to have made radical changes to the way they are operating in London and more generally as a US based international company. Many including TfL’s layers and a number of MPs on the Transport Select Committee are circumspect about the degree to which Uber has and will continue to changed its ways. Others are openly accusing Uber of mounting a PR campaign that promises much but that hides the fact that very little of really substance has been done to address the underlying failings in their business model.
Their London operation is very much on probation and there may well be lessons from the court case and Uber’s subsequent actions in London over the coming year plus, for other UK Cities where Uber operates, has operated and is currently banned, or where it may wish to operate in future. Meanwhile like many others major international companies operating online and, in the gig and sharing economies, Uber continue to be under the spotlight in the UK for both its employment practices and its own corporate and individual employee’s tax status; issues that are largely being looked at separately to their right to operate a licenced taxi service in any particular area.
Two good articles on the background to the London ban and yesterday’s probationary approval have been added to the Britishdestinations.net page on the “Gig economy”. This can be found now, or at any time in future, on the drop-down menu from the “Sharing economy” main menu tab. Or go direct to the gig economy page now at: