DISCOUNT taxi service Uber may have been given the boot from Spain once, but through a legal loophole the US-based company has managed to find its way back onto the grid.
The service has proven to be a big hit worldwide, thanks to significantly cheaper rates than those offered by traditional taxi companies, but a lawsuit launched by taxi drivers put the brakes on the operation in Spain back in December 2014. Uber had to pack its bags and hit the road when a Spanish judge ruled that the use of amateur drivers was a violation of national laws and unfair competition for professionally licenced cabbies.
Now Uber is popping up in Spain again, as it can get around the ban by employing professionally licenced drivers, including chauffeurs using private cars, rather than the amateur folk that were the company’s bread and butter in its previous incarnation.
The company will no doubt present stiff competition for Cabify, a similar service which already operates in Spain. The new and improved Uber is expected to have fares that will be 30 to 40 per cent cheaper than traditional taxis. The service will begin in Madrid and is then expected to extend into other parts of the country.