The GEO pricing mechanism allows customers to price any trip based on general trip information. Instead of requiring specific fixed trip information, you can now build a set of rules to automatically quote and price specific aspects of a trip. Geo Pricing offers the flexibility to support a multitude of trip options with a minimal set of rules. Using the pricing rules below, you can make the Geo Pricing as simple or as complex as needed to support your growing business needs.
Geo Pricing leverages Google for evaluating recommended trip routes, expected traffic impact, distance and duration for user when evaluating rules within the Geo Pricing engine. Instead of predefining all trip routes with fixed prices, the Fasttrak Geo Pricing engine allows pricing to be done specific to actual trip characteristics, against a set of rules defined within your Fasttrak system. Geo Pricing is built directly into the Fasttrak Ultimate and Express applications and will continue to be extended as the industry and customer needs evolve.
Geo Pricing Configuration
Geo Pricing supports a variety of options to help you tailor your pricing needs. It is recommended to build out your pricing in the order below. This will allow optimal pricing strategies without duplicating pricing rule configuration. For each, general recommendations will be followed by a general user tutorial. The sections are broken into the following areas:
- Service Areas: Define pick-up/drop-off areas (postal code, airport codes) for use when configuring pricing plan supported locations and tax rule configuration.
- Fixed Charge Items: Additional items added to reservations based on pricing rules, driver adds, etc.
- Primary Pricing Ruleset: The rules that apply to all vehicle types within a single Geo pricing plan. It is generally recommended to define the majority of rules at this level so common rules can be defined once, and not repeated specific to each vehicle type.
- Vehicle Type Ruleset: The rules that apply to a single vehicle type within a single Geo Pricing plan. It is recommended to only apply additional rules for vehicle types when the details of that rule are specific to only that vehicle type.
Fixed Charge Items and Service Areas
Fixed Charge Items and Service Areas are defined once across all Geo Pricing plans and selected for use specifically within a single pricing plan. That is, configuring of these items once will allow them to be used across all Geo Pricing plans.
Service Area Definition
Service areas are used for multiple reasons. Primarily, they will be used to answer the question, “What areas do I service?”. When generating quotes for a reservation, the quote will be completed BUT marked as invalid if the addresses/airports within the quote are not within one of the defined service areas. In the future, we will use service areas to put a hard stop on what reservations are allowed from external integrations; customer portal, affiliate integrations, etc.
Additionally, service areas can be defined for use when applying pricing rules. For example, you may want to only apply a tax rule if the drop-off location is falls within a specific service area.
Note: It is recommended to keep the service areas as simple as possible so as not revert to defining hundreds of rulesets for each trip as was done within the zone-based pricing model. Unless you need to apply specific pricing rules for specific areas, most customers will find it sufficient to break down service areas for the following reasons:
- Need to apply a rule (tax rule, etc.) specific to an area
- Different vehicle types support different airports/postal codes/cities
Once you click on the Manage Service Area , you will see the Manage Common Service Area screen. Existing service areas are shown in the list below. To edit a service area, double click a service area name and it will be loaded. Service areas support the following information:
- Name: Displayed on pricing management screen
- Description: Internal use description
- Area Type: Defines the type of service area:
- Postal Codes: Allows you to enter one or more postal codes for this service area. These will be used when confirming a trip address falls within a service area.
- Airports: Allows you to enter one or more airport codes for this service area. This is required within Fasttrak when defining a reservation that is an arrival or departure.
- Cities: Allows you to enter one or more Cities for this service area. These will be used when confirming a trip address falls within a service area.
Once you are done modifying the service area, click the Save button to save changes. You can also delete service areas using the three dot menu to the far right of the service area.
Note: It is recommended to add service areas first so that they can be selected for use in future pricing plan configuration. If you add new service areas after the creation of pricing plans, you will need to edit the existing plans to add the new service areas.
Fixed Charge Items
Fixed charge items are defined once and leveraged across all Geo Pricing plans. Geo Fixed Charge Items are independent of existing Zone-Based items and will not carry over from previous configuration.
New Fixed Charge Item configuration has been added to support options from within the Fasttrak Driver App. These include:
- “Price is Fixed …”: Specifies the price as fixed and doesn’t allow the price to be changed. If drivers are allowed to change the price of the item, you can leave this unchecked.
- “Item requires quantity …”: Specifies that the item can be added with a specific quantity instead of as multiple charge rows. These items will show up within subsequent reservation pricing using a quantity value.
- “Item can be added by driver”: Specifies that the item is selectable to be added by the driver directly using the Fasttrak Driver App.
Geo-Pricing fixed charge item configuration allows drivers more control of item application during a trip, providing better throughout to the costing and invoicing process.
Note: It is recommended to add fixed charge items first so that they can be selected for use in future pricing plan rule configuration. If you add new fixed charge items after the creation of pricing plans, you will need to edit the existing plan rules to add the fixed charge items.
Pricing Plan Management
Geo Pricing plans can be added from the main screen using the Add GEO Pricing Plan button. You may also EDIT, DELETE or COPY using the three button menu to the right of the plan name.
Clicking the Add button will allow you to create the plan:
Name: Name of plan as seen on reservation form.
Description: Internal description of the plan.
Plan is Active: If unchecked, hides the plan for use for reservation pricing.
By default, no service areas will be selected for the pricing plan. You can add existing service areas to the plan by checking the corresponding service area box in the lower left. These then become the service areas that are used to validate the service area when obtaining a price. You can you add/remove service areas from the plan at any time by unchecking/checking the appropriate check boxes.
Once the service areas are complete, you are ready to add Vehicle rulesets. Vehicle Rulesets are twofold:
- Vehicle Rulesets define a vehicle type as available for booking within the plan including base/minimum pricing information
- Vehicle Rulesets define rules specific to only that vehicle type.
Note: Unlike Zone-based pricing, you can create pricing plans that only support certain vehicle types. When booking a reservations, only those vehicle types added within the ruleset will show for selection on the reservation form.
Vehicle rulesets come on two forms; Primary and Vehicle Type Specific.
Primary Vehicle Type Ruleset
Each pricing plan can have a maximum of one primary ruleset. If defined, the primary ruleset will define rules for all types configured for the ruleset. For example, if you create a tax rule at the primary ruleset level, it will be applied to all reservations that use the Geo Ruleset, regardless of vehicle type.
It is recommended the majority of your rules are defined at the primary ruleset level for simplicity in management moving forward.
A pricing plan must have to have a primary ruleset, there may be no definitions BUT it must have the Primary Ruleset. You can add the primary ruleset by clicking the [Add Vehicle Type Ruleset] button at the top. For simplicity, double-clicking any ruleset in the list will also being up the edit screen.
The plan above has been configured with 7 rules at the primary level.
Vehicle Ruleset Management
The Vehicle Ruleset Management allows the following configuration options:
- Basic Ruleset Information
- Vehicle Type: Defines the vehicle type the rules apply too
- Minimum Rate: Defines the absolute minimum charge for a reservation using this pan and vehicle type.
- Increment (minutes): Defines the increment in which the minimum charge would be applied.
- Minimum Rate Rounding: Defines the rule for how the minimum rate is rounded forminutes over the increment.
- Always Round Up: If remainder minutes over the increment is > 0, round up to the next increments.
- Always Round Down: If remainder minutes over the increment is > 0, disregard the remainder minutes.
- Midpoint Rounding: If remainder minutes over the increment is > half an increment, round up to the next increments, otherwise disregard the remainder increments.
- Include Minimum as Base Rate: This option automatically adds the amount as a cost prior to adding any additional amounts. In the image below a rate of $75 would be added prior to calculating any additional mileage or time.
In addition to the minimum rate, the rule requires you to specify the vehicle type. In addition, you can choose to copy the rulesets from another vehicle type to help with configuration.
Minimum Charge Example: In the example above, $75.00 would be charged for every 720 minutes of the trip. A trip booked against this pricing plan using the SEDAN vehicle type and estimated by Google to take 95 minutes in traffic on Friday afternoon, would have a base charge calculated of $75.00. (The amount included as Base Rate. The next $75 would not be added until after 6 hours)
Note: An operator can choose to forgo the minimum charge, setting the rate to 0. If this is done, there will be no minimum for a vehicle trip and any additional rules will apply without regard to a minimum.
In addition to the base charge, additional rules can be applied at the primary of vehicle type specific ruleset to further define the cost of the trip. Three of these rules can impact the base charge:
- Incremental Duration Rate Rule: Defines the amount to charge based on the expected duration of the trip.
- Incremental Distance Rate Rule: Defines the amount to charge based on the expected duration of the trip.
- Block Distance Pricing Rule: Sets incremental pricing blocks based on distance. EXAMPLE: Every 5 miles is charged $25. A reservation with a distance of 4 miles would have a charge of $25 added. A reservation with a distance of 21 miles would have a charge of $125 (5 blocks)
- Block Duration Pricing Rule: Sets incremental pricing blocks based on time. EXAMPLE: Every 30 minutes is charged $25. A reservation with a time of 25 minutes would have a charge of $25 added. A reservation with a distance of 72 minutes would have a charge of $75 (3 blocks) If a vehicle defines one or both of these rules, they will be used to compare with the Minimum/Base Charge setting of the vehicle type to determine the Base Charge applied to the quote.
Incremental Charge Example: For example, the minimum charge has been calculated to be $150 on Friday afternoon (95 mins) or $125 on Sunday afternoon (70 mins). In addition, Google estimates the trip to traverse 55 miles. Using the incremental rules configured in the images above, the base charge is quoted using the greater of the minimum or incremental charges (combined):
Friday Afternoon Trip
- 95 Minutes Duration over 55 miles
- $150 minimum calculated via minimum base charge
- Incremental Rate
- An incremental duration charge of $38 applies: (95/5 min is 19 increments to be charged @ 2.00 per increment = $38)
- An incremental distance charge of $110 applies: (55-0 free is 55 miles to be charged @ 2.00 per additional mile = $110)
- Incremental Charge: $148.00
- Final Base Charge: $150 since minimum rate is higher than incremental rate.
Sunday Afternoon Trip
- 70 Minutes Duration over 55 miles
- $125 minimum calculated via minimum charge
- Incremental Rate
- An incremental duration charge of $34 applies: (70/5 min is 17 increments to be charged @ 2.00 per increment = $34)
- An incremental distance charge of $110 applies: (55-0 free is 55 miles to be charged @ 2.00 per additional mile = $110)
- Final Base Charge: $144.00 since incremental rate is higher.
Once Geo Pricing has been enabled for use and vehicle types configured for Geo pricing plans, the plans will be available for selection from the reservation screen.
This section will describe the pricing rules available for use when configuring Geo Pricing. Keep in mind, it is up to you as to which rules you want to apply. In general, some rules are not allowed to be added twice (incremental rules, wait-time, etc). Other rules can be added twice as necessary (fixed charge item, time of day, etc.)
Note: Some rules link back to previous rules when determine the charge to apply, so it is important to start with your basic rules (additional charge, fixed charge, etc.) and work towards the rules that rely on others (variable, discount, tax).
Wait-Time Rule: Allows you to configure the amount to charge for minutes between On Location and On Board.
Additional Charge 1 Rule: Allows you to add a charge amount to the Additional Charge 1 line -item within a reservation.
Additional Charge 2 Rule: Allows you to add a charge amount to the Additional Charge 2 line -item within a reservation.
Additional Fixed Charge Rule: Allows you to add an ad-hoc charge as a Fixed Item Charge within a reservation. The Fixed Charge Item does not need exist previously.
Fixed Charge Item Rule: Allows you to add one or more defined Fixed Charge Items within a reservation. The Fixed Charge Items are selected form the list of configured items.
Additional Stop Rule: Allows you to add one or more Fixed Item Charge based on the number of additional stops within a reservation.
Time of Day Fixed Charge Rule: Allow you to add one or more Fixed Charge Items based on time of day and/or day of week.
Variable Charge Ruled: Allows you to add a variable charge item to the reservation, including driver gratuity.
Variable Discount Rule: Allows you to add a variable discount item to the reservation.
Fixed Discount Rule: Allows you to add a fixed discount item to the reservation.
Tax Item Rule: Allows you to add a tax item to the reservation.