Ojek Ontel Which Still Exist in Jakarta

IMG_20150909_121557“Lets ride my Ojek Ontel (bicycle taxi). Guaranteed faster Sir”, said Suparno, a 50 year old Ojek Ontel driver, with a smile in his face. Suparno is a resident of Jakarta who has decades offering Ojek Ontel services to people passing in front of the Station Jakarta Kota, Central Jakarta. He is one Ojek Ontel driver who can survive amid strong competition from other public transportation in Jakarta such as bus, taxi and motorcycle taxi as well as the latest phenomenon Go-Jek.

Go-Jek became the latest phenomenon in Indonesia using it’s newest innovation of transportation service to take out people easily as well as serves the other services such as food delivery, shopping, and shipping the document. Go-Jek is being a multifunction service company for transportation in Indonesia nowadays. Go-Jek break down the mainstream business in motorcycle transportation and make dillema for other public transportation such as motorcycle Ojek and Ojek Ontel.

Suparno said that when motorcycle taxi presents in the 1990s, many Ojek Ontel drivers complained about thier existences and felt like motorcycle taxi drivers alredy taken all their business and their roles. Now turn motorcycle taxi driver who complain about the Go-Jek presence. It’s a paradox while many people welcoming the Go-Jek but in the other side it turns off the motorcycle taxi and make Ojek Ontel transportation marginalized.

Ojek Ontel is basically full of informalities. Neither the national nor local governments ever consider Ojek Ontel and other similar public trasportation as a formal activity or a subject to be regulated. They leave it informal as it is since this practice is seen partly as a solution for urban mobility problems, as well as a means for job creation. In crowded and jammed metropolitans like Jakarta, Ojek Ontel has become as a basic need for citizens seeking for faster mobility.

Ojek Ontel became an attractive option since it’s price is relatively cheaper than motorcycle taxi. Since the Ojek Ontel driver rides on a general bicycle, there are no special device such as a machine and taximeter equipped. As a result, the passenger should negotiate for rate. For instance, for short distances (1 to 3 kilometer), passengers usually could bargain a rate of about 5,000 rupiah. While if we ride motorcycle taxi, for short distance the passeneger could negotiate the price at least 10.000 rupiah.

This eco-friendly Ojek Ontel operates every day starting at 07.00 a.m to 17.00 p.m. Slightly different from the motorcycle taxi which has settle at a certain place on a daily basis (called as pangkalan), the Ojek Ontel driver are re not gathered in pangkalan, but split up in several places. Even if assembled, most only 3-5 driver. This Ojek Ontel service is provided by individuals, instead of being subordinated under certain groups or companies.

When you ride Ojek Ontel, you will feel the difference. The chair lift at the rear of the bike feels comfortable and soft, and does not create aches. While it speed is slow compared to the motor bikes. This makes the journey more relaxed and comfortable, not so vibrate or shake due to sudden braking.

Hot blazing sun did not dampen the spirit of the Ojek Ontel driver like Suparno to offer their services and then pedaled down the alley and compete with the other city transport such as bus, taxi and Go-Jek. Although many passengers are choosing Go-Jek, but the Ojek Ontel driver is still smiling and hoping there will be passengers who use their services.

Ojek Ontel actually has been operating in Jakarta since 1970s as an alternative public transportation. At first Ojek Ontel was regularly used by people to transport goods from or going to Tanjung Priok port in North Jakarta, In line with the Jakarta governor Ali Sadikin plans to eliminate becak (pedicab) as public transportation, Ojek Ontel appeared as one alternative transportation, particularly in the area near the Tanjung Priok port in North Jakarta or Stasion Jakarta Kota. In that area Ojek Ontel is more often used to transport people. The drivers are migrants from outside Jakarta who want to work in the big city without any specil skills, just use their power.

At the time, as a new transportation mode, the presence of Ojek Ontel led to resistance from becak’s drivers. They felt that the presence of Ojek Ontel will reduce their income. But slow but sure, those frictions can be resolved and they can adapt each other since they have different market. Becak to transport people and good, while Ojek Ontel only to transport people.

History continues, in line with the law of nature that only the best and strongest who can survive, finally the presence of Ojek Ontel was displaced by a new public transportation such as motorcycle taxi and Go-Jek with its new system using ICT. Ojek Ontel was slowly shifted and pulled over.

And Ojek Ontel will still exist and survive as long as they can make adjustment in accordance with market market needs. The market becomes the key and the customer is always king. Only those who are creative and innovative were the one who always survive all the time. The Ojek Ontel driver should have creativity to offer his services and serves passenger with friendly. And the last but not least, the Ojek Ontel driver could used ICT application system just like Go-Jek serve their customers in office areas. And finally people have many public transportation choice. People feel free to chose motorcycle taxi, Go-Jek or Ojek Ontel.



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