Designing public transportation: Cabrosia (part 1)

cropcm554x330_1619-4379281690_d4a1eece47_bI have decided to go through an entire product design process here on the DDoDSW – and hope that you will join me. What will I be designing? If you missed the hint from the featured image of this post, I will spell it out – a public transportation, in this case, cab company.

My idea is relatively simple: over the next 5 weeks, I will dedicate Tuesday’s posts to the mythical transportation solution. My intended path is: Part 1 – The concept; Part 2 – The UX design; Part 3 – The visuals; Part 4 – The digital presence, and; Part 5 – The conclusion. I invite your feedback throughout the exercise.


The taxi is as utile as any other form of public transportation in Jamaica, however as a private passenger carrier, cabs have simply not tried to meet the non-primary needs of their audience. This is where Cabrosia© excels. Cabrosia (pronounced cab-brozha) is a boutique taxi service competitively positioned between generic public transportation and a limousine service. Cabrosia offers transportation coupled with service and entertainment – so that our customers’ travel experience is one of elegant verve. Our contract-based consumers will rest easy knowing that their assigned driver will be on location at least five (5) minutes before the pre-arranged time. With add-on services such as meals (from pre-approved gourmet vendors), Internet access and premium entertainment via pre-release DVDs (or other digital media), our contractors will be comfortable whether their ride is from Half-Way Tree to Papine or Papine to Negril. Contractors will even have the option of whether they would prefer an unmarked/non-branded vehicle for their transportation needs Not one for contracts? Not a problem. Cabrosia’s drivers will arrive on time and wait up to ten (10) minutes while you enjoy our complimentary Cabrosia-branded chai tea sampler and biscuits before whisking you to the destination of your choice.

There is one last way we would like to show our appreciation for choosing Cabrosia. We understand that travel is not always simple, and as such we promise you that stops of less than five (5) minutes along your pre-approved route are entirely FREE!*

Cabrosia… experience the immortality of elegant travel


* limit of two stops. Additional stops are charged at 10% of the cost of the original journey.

CABROSIA business summary:

Service: Primarily, private passenger transportation between two points. Secondary services include: gourmet meals and samplers, mobile Internet access and digital audio-visual entertainment.

Value proposition: Consumers of private passenger carrier services fall into two main groups: (1) the “more wealthy” passengers – henceforth MWPs, typified by workers who are  manager-level and above. They are “out of a car” for a little, or have acquired enough wealth to use the services of a contracted driver. Visiting professionals also fall into this bracket; and (2) the “less wealthy” passengers – henceforth LWPs, typified by lower than manager-level workers who are more likely than not saving for a car or enjoy the benefits of their employer negotiating a transportation deal with the Cabrosia (or another service provider). In general, MWPs expect an above average service and are ostentatious. Cabrosia provides a viable alternative to a limousine service for MWPs. LWPs will tend to pay for the additional conveniences (add-on services) and be driven by the sense of social mobility gained from being able to use “luxury services”.

Competitive positioning: Boutique private passenger carrier. We are not your average taxi service.

Pricing: Contract-based consumer will have a base cost of 25% above the average cost of a cab. Call-in consumers will have a base cost of 35% above the average cost of a cab


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That is where I think I will take this little experiment. Feel free to add your input in the comments section – but be reminded that as far as I am concerned, this is an entirely hypothetical situation that has evolved from friendly banter about taxi services in Jamaica. I am open to suggestions of where I can take this exercise.

PS: if someone actually likes the idea and tries it – I’ll be happy with 5% equity.. that’s all… really… … …weeelllll – maybe free service for a year as well 😉


Image credits:

9 thoughts on “Designing public transportation: Cabrosia (part 1)

  1. @MisterCheez

    Hmmm… Interesting. Seems like a hard sell, but you’ve got my attention. I wait to see more as this unravels.
    I do have one quick question though: when is elegant travel, mortal?

  2. el maèstro

    This is indeed very interesting. With the state of the public transport system where it’s at these days I think this would be a welcome alternative. Can’t wait to see the visuals you come up with for this luxurious service.

    1. D'Oyen Post author

      Thanks man! It’ll be fun doing them. May actually pull on some help from within the Jamaica Design Association (JDA).

  3. Natalie D. A. Bennett

    Totally can be done. Some existing taxi-drivers already operate in a similar way, especially when they have regular customers who depend on them. I can see women using this service a lot, which means you need to build in some safety protocols. In fact, you should use women drivers (yes, you can send me the check later). Don’t bother with the whole heap a fluff eeda – chai not necessary; a cup of mint tea or coffee will do just fine. Make it a Jamaican product not an import, and make it affordable. Also, something to note: ability to take a taxi is not about “wealth”; it’s about disposable income; those are not the same thing. You can’t gauge wealth based on what people do; what you can gauge is how they are willing to spend their money; by definition wealthy people don’t spend their money frivolously or allow the market to determine how they travel; so you’re going after particular professional types – people who need to be mobile but don’t need to be tied to a physical vehicle. I hope you do it.

    1. D'Oyen Post author

      Hi Natalie! Thank you so much for the insight…

      1 – Make it Jamaican
      2 – Fluff is unnecessary
      3 – Affordability is key (already had this one)
      4 – Wealth vs disposable

      Hope I got those right – I will try to build in them in as I move forward!

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