DOZENS of taxi drivers began a “day of action” against Uber on Wednesday, March 22, with a caravan of protesters driving from Avenida Balboa to Plaza Cinco de Mayo to block Ave de Matires, causing widespread traffic jams.
The t xistas leader, Rafael Reyes, said that was the beginning of a day of protests, to defend the source of their daily sustenance.
Reyes said that taxi drivers have professional licenses, and insurance, certification of operations, unlike Uber.
"There is no respect for legal certainty in the country," he complained.
During my last visit to Panama City I used a mix of yellow cabs and Uber. The yellow cabs over charge in most cases even though half of them did not know how to get to many of the big malls and hotels. They are rude and I am not sure they know what a shower is. I asked 1 of them to turn down the music so I could make a call to my doctor (he was watching a You Tube video while driving). The taxi driver final ask me to get out (got about 3/4 of the way to where I wanted to go in front of the El Panama Hotel) explaining the taxi was his office so I should quit complaining, he still wanted to charge the full fare. He said he was going to call a cop I laughter at him, just then a Tourist police officer walked over to see what the problem was I said the music is much to loud, the taxis driver tried to tell his side of the story final the officer had to tell him to turn down the music so he could hear him. I left and got another taxi the officer stayed to look at the taxi driver's paperwork, pointing at a damage rear fender and busted tail light. Profession training/attitude my ass! Uber drivers were reasonably priced if you used the App to book. Some want to overcharge if the App is not use and if you use the app they take you right to your location not guessing where you want to go.
Fully agree. Support Uber. Excellent service at reasonable prices. Fed up with honking taxis. Please circulate widely and ensure their survival.
I go right past those vultures at Tocumen and get myself an Uber. $25 versus $45 (or even more, if you're an English-only gringo). I love the argument these taxi drivers put forward. "We have professional licenses" (oh, yeah - like what? a regular driver's license like everyone else?) "We have insurance" (how do you know this? A lot of taxis are day rentals from a local taxi rental agency, so how does any driver or client know they are actually insured?) "Certificate of Operations" (what the hell is that? - never heard of it). Uber certifies that their drivers are properly licensed, that their vehicles are properly insured, that their vehicles are impeccably clean, that Si! Voy!, AND MOST IMPORTANT, that their drivers aren't lying, thieving scumbags with criminal records.
Maybe if taxis stopped gouging passengers people would not use Uber so much. In Albrook I needed to get to Panama Pacifico and asked 3 different taxi drivers how much. The lowest was $15 the highest $25. This was mid-morning, not rush hour. Friends tell me the lowest Uber is $7, the highest they have paid is $10. And the $10 driver in one instance waited 30 minutes for them and returned them for an additional $5.