In response to more competition, Uber has reduced its rates in Paris. In response to the lower rates, Uber drivers have threatened to boycott the app, a European news agency reported.
Parisian drivers for Uber, the San Francisco-based company that allows users of its app to book car rides, protested Tuesday the company’s drop in prices. They said they would boycott the app all day, and have formed their own union, according to France 24, a French news station.
Last Thursday, the company announced it would drop the minimum price from $9.10 to $5.70 per ride — a lowering of 20 percent. Companies similar to Uber in Paris, such as Taxi Bleus and G7, have also announced various plans to cut the cost of journeys for passengers, including a fare cap on all night rides and discounts for people between 15 and 25 years old.
“[Uber’s] near-monopoly allows it to play around with the flat rate without a care for the livelihoods of its chauffeurs,” Mohammed Rabi, who was elected spokesman for the drivers union on Monday evening, told France 24.
Uber has angered its drivers before. Strikes and protests were stirring in New York City in September when Uber announced it would require its high-end service drivers — under the UberBlack and UberSUV labels — to pick up customers from the UberX and UberXL services, which have lower minimum fares, according to Slate.
After the controversy, the company announced that UberBlack and UberSUV drivers could pick when they would take requests from the lower fare riders. Despite the protests from its own drivers, Uber is more used to protests from taxi drivers.
— Al Jazeera English (@AJEnglish) October 13, 2015
Protests erupted in France in June when taxi drivers attacked drivers they thought were working for Uber, according to the New York Times. Last month, yellow cab drivers protested in New York City against New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s support for Uber after he opposed a cap on the service, according to AM New York.