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Taxi Drivers Close Historic Budapest Bridge Demanding Ban On Uber

This is the second anti-Uber demonstration the Hungarian capital had to get through this year already, but the problem isn’t really with the cheap way everybody likes to travel nowadays.


Taxi drivers in Budapest aren’t exactly fans of Uber because taxis are heavily regulated in the Hungarian capital, meaning that the government is telling them what kind of cars they can use (not too small ones) for how long (ten years), how those taxis have to look (a certain yellow) and on top of that, the fare is also fixed and set by the city (about a dollar per kilometer).


Satisfying all those rules leaves a very thin margin for profits, while taxis outside of Budapest, and alternatives like Uber, don’t have to follow these regulations at all. And of course there are those on both sides who don’t follow any rules. We Hungarians call them hyaenas, and yes, they will rip you off.

But with Uber, at least you might get a refund.

This system is hardly fair, and until the goverment can’t figure out a way to lower the taxi driver’s costs or force their competition under the same umbrella while also filtering out all the cheaters, the driver’s quest against Uber will continue.

But banning cheap travel is certainly not the answer.


Traffic has been restored, for now.

European writer of Jalopnik, based in Budapest.

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If I lived there, this would make me exclusively use Uber.