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Chamber slams City Taxi Service

The City Taxi Service remains “unacceptably inadequate”, the Gibraltar Chamber of Commerce has said as it hit out over a 50% increase in taxi fares and called for competition in the sector.

According to the Chamber the “sheer lack of provision and poor quality” of the City Service gives “a very damaging impression” of Gibraltar to visiting businesspeople and tourists alike.

“Gibraltar cannot afford for this to continue,” the Chamber said in a statement.

“When the Government announced the introduction of the Taxi Association’s Customer Charter in October 2013 it outlined ways to ensure that City Taxi Service would be greatly improved in terms of the availability of taxis at the main ranks in town, at the border and at the airport.”

Complaints about the situation by members of the public appear frequently on local social media groups and serve to highlight the strength of feeling on this matter, the Chamber said.

“To add insult to injury, taxi fares have just been increased by 50 per cent,” it added.

Highlighting one example, the Chamber said, on the evening of bank holiday Monday September 5, passengers arriving on flights from the UK had to wait for more than 90 minutes for taxis, often sharing the ride with other passengers to destinations which were nearby.

“A related letter published in the Gibraltar Chronicle made a number of very valid points, but perhaps the central theme is that without competition the service will never improve,” the Chamber said.

Competition could take a variety of forms, the Chamber added, such as issuing new licences to owner drivers, setting up an alternative company to run the City Service or introducing a service like Uber or Lyft to Gibraltar.

“The GTA has had ample time to put its house in order, but it has not had any appreciable effect on the service they provide,” the Chamber said, adding that proper reliable alternatives must now be considered.

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