Uber's popularity isincreasing and the San Francisco company has plans for expansion to other cities. But there are plenty of taxi drivers who are not letting this go without a fight. They're finding different ways to protest, and in some cases it has turned violent.
This week in Paris, taxi cab drivers stopped traffic right in the middle of a busy section of a highway leading to the airport. Other drivers shattered windows, smashed mirrors, and slashed the tires of vehicles from Uber's fleet.
Uberis an app that you download on your smartphone, and the way it works is very simple. A map pops up on your phone and shows the location of Uber drivers closest to you. Then you press a button to be picked up. Within seconds you are notified of which driver accepted the pick-up, and while he's in route you see his picture and other customer reviews on him, and within minutes he's at your front door in a luxury vehicle. And there is no money exchanged, the transaction is done electronically through the app, including the tip. You will pay anywhere from thirty to fifty percent more for the service than a regular cab, but it seems there are plenty of passengers willing to do that because of the convenience and quick response.
But many taxi drivers say it's unfair.
Taxi drivers have pushed for lawmakers to step in and in some cases they have been successful. In Paris, a '15-minute law' went into effect, requiring all Uber drivers to wait 15 minutes after a request is placed to pick up a passenger.
Other taxi drivers are calling for driver recruitment bans.
Uber currently operates in 26 countries and more than 50 cities.
Uber has fought back many of these new policies and proposals aimed at leveling the playing field for cabbies. In Portland, the company has urged lawmakers to change an ordinance requiring cars to wait an hour before picking up would-be passengers.