Passengers at Malaga-Costa del Sol Airport. / SALVADOR SALAS

Uber gains ground at Malaga-Costa del Sol Airport, but taxi drivers have a counter plan

The multinational ride-hailing company will have a presence in the terminal and its own parking area out front, but taxi drivers also have some new ideas to beat airport 'pirates'

FRANCISCO JIMÉNEZ

The ride-hailing company Uber is strengthening its presence at the Malaga-Costa del Sol airport and the operator has just signed a contract to have its own parking area as well as a customer service counter in Terminal 3.

The multinational has signed similar deals with the national airport operator, Aena, Madrid-Barajas and Barcelona-El Prat airports, according to El País newspaper.

As a result, Uber cars will be able to work practically like the taxis which do, already, have a reserved area in front of the terminal, as well as an exclusive stop for picking up customers. Previously, the ride-hailing company could only drop off or pick up customers. But now the company will not only have a parking area for about 35 vehicles, but also a customer service counter in T3.

According to El País, the multinational will have to pay Aena a variable fee that will be equivalent to 21% of the declared monthly income, with a minimum amount of 25,000 euros per year. The initial contract is for a three-year period.

Taxi drivers counter plan

Members of the Costa del Sol Taxis Confederation also plan to have desk in the airport, with a stand located right in front of the arrival terminal door so that it is the first thing that passengers see as soon as they step on Malaga soil.

This customer service post will offer information about the destination and the price they should pay. The intention of the sector is to offer the possibility of even paying the fare in advance, so that when you get into the taxi you only have to present the ticket. The association is seeking to counteract the presence of 'pirates' that try to attract customers by taking advantage of the queues that form at the bus stop at peak times or the travellers who cannot find their way to the taxi rank outside the terminal.