13CABS is one of the two major taxi network service providers (NSP) in the greater Melbourne area. 13CABS is a form of the telephone alpha-numeric 13 2227. 13CABS is based in Melbourne, Australia and is owned by Cabcharge, which also operates about 1,900 taxis, making it the second largest fleet of taxis in the greater Melbourne area, through a number of companies or entities, including:Black Cabs Combined Pty Ltd
North Suburban Taxis
Yarra Valley Taxis
On 28 July 2010 13CABS released the TaxiTracker feature for their smartphone app, which allows the public to track taxis they get into by storing on a secure server at 13CABS a photo of the taxi registration number together with a time stamp and the GPS coordinates of where the image was taken, known as geotagging. The feature is available on iPhone, Android and Windows 7 apps.
In June 2012 13CABS came under public scrutiny for releasing what was dubbed as a scare campaign targeting young women. The campaign was a response to the Taxi Industry Inquiry recommendation that unmarked mini-cabs, similar to those in London, be released in Melbourne.
The campaign was stopped due to public feedback, including a petition against it.
After findings during the Taxi Industry Inquiry highlighted major concerns regarding taxi driver safety, 13CABS began an initiative with private security companies to protect taxi drivers called Tiger Team, launched on 17 October 2012. Tiger Team was designed as a response to the rising number of attacks on Melbourne taxi drivers. Each team is composed of a taxi industry expert, there to mediate any disputes, and an accredited security guard who circles the Melbourne CBD attending to any instances where taxi drivers require assistance with aggressive passengers.
Tiger Team was criticised prior to its launch, most notably being referred to by Professor Allan Fels as vigilante teams. However, this comparison was stated as being premature by Victorian Premier Ted Ballieu who noted that the teams would be monitored closely by both police and the government. On 2 May 2013, Tiger Team was awarded the ASIAL Award for Excellence in the Special Security Project field.
On 19 May 2013, seven Warrnambool taxis broke away from Warrnambool Radio Taxis and joined 13CABS to become 13CABS Warrnambool. Controversy related to the separation arose as it was the first major split among Warrnambool taxi operators since Warrnambool Radio Taxis was established in 1985.
The move brought new technology to the 13CABS Warrnambool drivers and customers, including satellite navigation, smartphone booking apps, online bookings and a 24/7 call centre.
CABSTOP was launched by 13CABS on 10 September 2013 to enable bookings to be made on Twitter, claimed to be the world’s first taxi company to do so.
CABSTOP users register at CABSTOP.com.au and are provided with a CABSTOP code. The user then books a cab by texting the code to 0431 132 227 or direct messaging the code to @13CABS on Twitter.
By the time CABSTOP launched more than 40 signs had been distributed at public venues with CABSTOP codes.
On 25 September 2013, 13CABS drive Lakhwinder Singh Dhillon had $110,000 in cash and over $500,000 in casino chips left in his taxi.
Upon finding the money Singh promptly returned it and was given a $500 reward. He was featured in both national and international news for his honesty.
On the 16th of November 2013 Singh was awarded a Certificate of Commendation by Lord Mayor Robert Doyle at the Melbourne Awards. Doyle said of Singh, "He is truly an inspirational Melburnian - it was the act of an honest man of integrity".
On 25 July 2014, 13CABS was awarded the Monash Business Awards Business of the Year 2013-2014. The award was accepted by 13CABS Chief Operating Officer Stuart Overell.
On 23 February 2015, 13CABS held a charity cricket match to raise money for the Monash Children's Hospital. A team of 13CABS Taxi Drivers took on an All Star team that included former Australian cricketer Matthew Elliott and Hawthorn Football Club's Shaun Burgoyne.