Kater Technologies Inc. to soft-launch service end of March 2019. (ridekater/Instagram)

Kater to launch ridesharing service in Vancouver by end of month

The Surrey-based company got its permits from the Vancouver Taxi Association

A B.C. company says it has managed to get around ridesharing laws and will be launching its service by the end of March.

Kater Technology, based in Surrey, announced its soft-launch Thursday with a website asking for potential passengers in Vancouver to sign up.

READ MORE: B.C. ride hailing battle carries on into 2019

READ MORE: B.C. adds hundreds of taxis, delays ride hailing

In the coming weeks, select interested riders will be asked to download the company’s app to try it out, according to its website. Roughly 30 to 40 cars in its 140-car fleet will be hitting the streets around March 30.

How did Kater skirt the current laws that prohibit ridesharing in B.C.? It got permits through the Vancouver Taxi Association. The company originally operated as a service that connected customers to personal drivers for their own vehicles.

Although people will use the app to hail a ride, they’ll be charged the same base and travel rates as all other taxi services in the city. Drivers will only be allowed to pick up in Vancouver.

The company’s plan has been met with criticism, specifically from members of Ridesharing Now for BC, which is sponsored by ridesharing companies Lyft and Uber, who have been calling on the province to finalize its legislation.

“Kater is simply another form of taxi and does not address the need for transportation options across B.C. – not just where they make deals with local taxi associations,” the organization said.

Ian Black, president of the Greater Vancouver Board of Trade, said in a statement on social media that consumers are no further ahead with the service.

The NDP government passed legislation in November to allow ride-hailing services as soon as next fall, with restrictions on their numbers and requirements for private vehicle drivers to obtain a class four driver’s licence, pass a criminal record check, and have vehicles inspected.

– With files from Tom Fletcher


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Aid a priority for idled Vancouver Island loggers, John Horgan says

Steelworkers, Western Forest Products returning to mediation

Orca Place residents take time to clean up garbage in Parksville

‘We have to change all these people’s perspectives and outlook on us’

Ravensong Waterdancers bring home provincial awards

Club invited public to watch members perform routine Dec. 15

Parksville and Qualicum Beach looking for firefighters

Those interested can attend regular practice night

Experiment from Ballenas students heads to International Space Station

Entries from 23 countries; Ballenas is one of 11 schools chosen in Canada

VIDEO: More air-passenger rights go into effect this weekend

The first set of passenger rights arrived in mid-July in Canada

Swoop airlines adds three destinations in 2020 – Victoria, Kamloops, San Diego

Low-fair subsidiary of WestJet Airlines brings new destinations in April 2020

Navigating ‘fever phobia’: B.C. doctor gives tips on when a sick kid should get to the ER

Any temperature above 38 C is considered a fever, but not all cases warrant a trip to the hospital

Transportation Safety Board finishes work at B.C. plane crash site, investigation continues

Transport Canada provides information bulletin, family of victim releases statement

Trudeau sets 2025 deadline to remove B.C. fish farms

Foes heartened by plan to transition aquaculture found in Fisheries minister mandate letter

Wagon wheels can now be any size! B.C. community scraps 52 obsolete bylaws

They include an old bylaw regulating public morals

Indigenous mother wins $20,000 racial discrimination case against Vancouver police

Vancouver Police Board ordered to pay $20,000 and create Indigenous-sensitivity training

Sentencing for B.C. father who murdered two young daughters starts Monday

The bodies of Aubrey, 4, and Chloe, 6, were found in Oak Bay father’s apartment Dec. 25, 2017

B.C. vet talks tips for winter travel with pets

Going to see the vet the day before a trip is never a good idea

Most Read