UberBlack drivers in France threaten to Boycott service over Price Slashes


uber-protestUber has had a rough year in several markets and France is at the top of it.  In July 2015, taxi drivers in France held protests that blocked major transport hubs protesting the UberPop service. The drivers claimed the service was a source of unfair competition as the drivers were not subject to local authorities regulations and charges which made the service all the more cheaper.  The French government ordered a national clampdown on the UberPop service, which culminated in the arrest of Uber France managers for running an illegal service.

Uber has about 1 million users in France  and has been keen on expanding its services to most Cities in France which, has sparked the backlash.In France Uber runs Uber Black, a luxury chauffeur service with Mercedes S-class limousines which costs the same or less than the taxi to ride. Uber Pop (UberX locally), a low cost option in which drivers use their own cars that has since been banned. There is also UberXL but with vehicles of higher standards and charging higher prices. It also has Uber Chopper, a helicopter hailing service.

Following the ban of UberPoP, Uber has been operating its other service with Uber Black being the primary service. According to France24, Uber France decided to slash the prices of its chauffeur service by 20% with the minimum charges set at 5 euros.  The move was a reaction to price slashes by Uber competitors as well as standard cab companies. The slashing has elicited sharp reactions from UberBlack drivers, who plan on boycotting the service all together. The drivers have further formed a union to represent their interests and plan on holding a demonstration at Uber France’s office in Paris

Source: France24