Meru Cabs: “If it ain’t broke, go break it!!”

Posted: July 7, 2010 in Uncategorized
Tags: , ,

They say that ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’. But Meru obviously thnks differently on this. Read on..

At the outset, many of my friends would know that I have been a huge fan of Meru in the past. I have talked about them in person, on Facebook, on Twitter.. In fact, those days when I was doing the weekly Mumbai-Delhi trips (for almost a year!), Meru was a regular service I’d use. And talk about. In fact, I might have qualified for some serious loyalty points of cab-miles if you please, if they had schemes of that kind, during those days.

Even recently, when they finally started the special Mumbai airport service, with a direct IVR option for the same, I thought it was damn neat.

And then, disaster struck them. Perhaps they got a new Operations in charge, or some other smart aleck, who must have figured that stability may not be enough. And things need to get stirred up.

And so got introduced changes into the system. At the cost of messing things up.

Now for the last 7-8 times that I have dialled for a cab from home, I have never got one.

For the last 2 times that I have landed into Mumbai airport, I have not got a cab.

Okay, so far, nothing wrong in the system. Just that they got busier perhaps?

But let me point out to the system itself.

You call. You wait (yes, they tell you how much you need to wait approximately). Then an operator comes on. He recognizes you, thanks to your phone number (caller id) and previous interactions.

You ask for a cab and give details of when you need it. Chances are that he may convey a regret (“cab not available”) right there and then. Which is okay. You get out and go elsewhere.

But there are times, when he does not know. So why does he answer the call?

Ok, if he does not know, he puts you to an “automated system” which is going to let you know if there is a cab available or not. The operator has just punched in your data, and will now let the automated system do its thing. But as soon as you get to the automated system, it warns you of another longish wait.

And so you wait.

Only to get the automated response that cab is not available. Not a human across the line. So if you want to discuss some alternate time or adjustments, that is not possible. Will require another call, and more waiting.

Now the more interesting part.

Here is when the original human operator KNOWS of a cab availability. And more or less confirms it with you. Except that it STILL has to get validated with the Big Boss – yes, the “automated system”.

So now, the operator has confirmed that the cab is available, and you are listening to Meru music, while the automated system is ‘doing its thing’. You would expect it to return after the 2 minute wait, to give you maybe a confirmation number or something like that, right?

Surprise! The automated system comes back and lets you know, that the human operator did not know a thing. There are no cabs available.

*Here is when you move close to the wall, and then taking proper aim, you start a slow movement of banging your head to the wall*

So that is the smart, new automated system, that is expected to take Meru to new heights. Except that it is now starting from a new depth, and will have to scale all the way back to the surface first, and then consider going to new heights!

Ahh.. Easy Cabs.. are you any better than this? I am a customer waiting to shift loyalties..

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Sanjay Mehta, Sanjay Mehta. Sanjay Mehta said: A loyal Meru-ite, I am ready to shift my business, just about now: #meru #fail […]

  2. Aditya says:

    Reminds me of JD USA

  3. Rohan Arora says:

    Recent experience with Meru in Mumbai. The executive refused to take the booking request a day prior. I was even informed that booking requests for the morning slot on that particular day could not be taken as the entire fleet of 2000 cars was booked.I logged on to and submitted a request for a cab as a guest user, and within 20 minutes got an SMS that your request has been accepted.The Cab arrived too on time the next day. So next time if your request is rejected by the executive on 44224422, do post a request online.

    • Sanjay Mehta says:

      Crazy systems.. left hand does not know what right hand is doing!
      Thanks, Rohan.

    • Annkur says:

      Whoa I have been a huge meru fan myself and they have disappointed me aswell many times recently.

      And the thing of never a cab early mornings / past midnights is frustrating for sure.

      But this thing that Rohan points out is worth exploring. As a matter of fact I know that Meru is by far and still the best (however it is). Have had no luck at all with any other service.

  4. AMIT GANGULI says:

    Ya thats true Annkur, overall Meru services are still better than any other cab service.

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