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Taxi numbers fall as population increases

The number of taxis in Galway has fallen by over 50 in the last ten years – though the county’s population grows year on year.

And that taxi shortage is replicated across Ireland, with running costs making it too much of a challenge for many would-be taxi drivers.

This is according to insurance experts at Insuremytaxi.ie who say that National Transport Authority (NTA) data shows that Galway now has around 880 taxis – down from over 930 a decade ago – despite the population hike.

Nationally, there are less than 19,500 licensed taxis, hackneys, and limousines on Irish roads today, compared to 21,900 ten years ago and 27,429 in 2008, according to Jonathan Hehir, MD of Insuremytaxi.ie.

“In Galway, there are currently approximately 880 taxis in operation down from over 930 ten years ago. And yet between 2016 and 2022 alone, the population of the county grew by over 9,400,” said Mr Hehir.

According to the NTA, that’s 645 taxis, 179 hackneys, 62 limousines and two wheelchair-accessible hackneys.

But the insurance providers believe that a new agreement they have reached with insurers should shave hundreds of euros off the average insurance premium.

Mr Hehir believes that the cheaper premiums will attract greater numbers to the taxi industry and bridge the gap between demand and supply.

“We’ve been in discussions over the last 18 months and are delighted to launch this service and much-needed competition to the market,” he said.

Experts at Insuremytaxi.ie say that taxi insurance is one of the areas of commercial insurance where historically there have been very high premiums – and which has significantly added to the cost of running a taxi.

Pictured: Jonathan Hehir, MD of Insuremytaxi.ie.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune:

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