The running battle between taxi drivers and Uber drivers in Cancun has thankfully calmed down significantly over the past month. Although the issue hasn’t gone away completely, and conflict continues in isolated cases.
With that said, the local authorities in Cancun have taken steps to restore order to the industry by declaring any taxi driver that engages in non-legal activities related to this situation will be stripped of their taxi operator’s license.
Will It Fix The Issue?
This whole situation was borne from taxi drivers being angry about the loss of customers to Uber drivers, as well as the effects it will have on pricing as they will be forced to compete with Ubers allegedly aggressive pricing strategies when they enter a market.
The threat of losing their license to operate as a taxi service is no small thing. While the conflict seen has been horrifying at times and totally unacceptable, the threat to taxi drivers’ livelihood is a strong move to take by the local government. Only time will tell what long-term effect this will have, but it is strongly believed it will improve the situation in the short term.
Why Taxi Drivers Are Concerned
It should be said the concerns of Cancun taxi drivers are seen as legitimate by many locals, no matter how undiplomatic their actions. As mentioned above, Uber is often criticized for its aggressive pricing strategies in new markets, with accusations being brought that they underprice trips to capture the local market as fast as possible before returning prices to more realistic levels.
While the above argument is up for debate and by no means proven as fact, it never the less is assumed to be the case by many local taxi drivers.
What Does This Mean For Travelers?
First and foremost, it is hoped this announcement will calm the current situation even further. The safety of tourists in Cancun is always treated as a priority by the local government and the tourist industry.
The scenes witnessed over the past eight weeks were naturally concerning for travelers planning on using Uber to transfer to their resort. Uploads of traveler-filled Ubers being attacked by taxi drivers flooded TikTok and other social media platforms, creating an atmosphere of uncertainty and fear.
With this move, it’s hoped those scenes become an unfortunate memory and order is restored to Cancun’s transport industry.
Mexico’s Difficult Uber Relationship
It would be an understatement to say Uber has had a difficult time in Mexico. After a highly successful start in Mexico City, which had some minor kickback, the ride-hailing service began to expand across the country.
Popular destinations like Los Cabos had a less agreeable beginning with Uber, where local government and taxi unions fought their right to operate at every turn for multiple years. As well as this, airports across Mexico refuse to allow Uber to operate on the airport grounds, with the military and national guard forcing Uber drivers to leave or face a fine.
In Cancun, Uber has enjoyed more positive support from the local government in general. But it has seen the most extreme altercations and reignited the debate in Mexico about Uber’s place in the country.
There are thankfully more options for transport to and from Cancun airport other than taxis and Uber, meaning travelers can safely avoid the current situation if needed.
Private Transfer Operators
These operators are one of the most popular transportation services in the whole state. They have a superb reputation for using modern, clean, and reliable vehicles. As well these operators for very reasonably priced, with a one-way trip to the Hotel Zone costing just $39!
These small buses are extremely cheap, costing on average $15 one-way to the Hotel Zone. A favorite of solo travelers and young spring-breakers eager to save a few dollars. These shuttles, like the private transfers above, are modern and well-maintained.
ADO is the most trusted coach transport operator in Mexico, with a modern fleet of well-maintained vehicles and super connectivity. The price of this service often shifts with inflation, but on average, the cost of a single ticket to the Cancun central bus station will be less than $5. And with a service every 30 minutes until 1 am, it’s one of the most convenient ways to get into Cancun.
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