MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - A local Uber driver, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, is a former taxicab driver himself. He said that because of run-ins with airport security, he no longer picks up or drops off at the airport. He said they are asked to leave by airport security and are told they would get a ticket from police for soliciting.
The driver said that there's not enough regulation for transportation network companies (TNCs) at the airport and that airport officials haven't given them anything in writing to tell them where they should or shouldn't be -
The driver says that they just need an area to pick up and drop off, because they don't have to sit and wait in the same place like the taxicab drivers. That's not the way Uber works. He said that he can just sit at home and the business will come to him.
"We just need an area to pick up. It doesn't matter where we sit, because we can't do anything until the customer calls us," said the local Uber driver. "It's not like we're going to sit and they walk out and say 'Hey there's an Uber,' and jump in the car. They request us and we go pick them up. We just need a place not to be harassed when we go pick people up."
Airport officials said Uber drivers must come through the short term lot with the "U" sticker visible on the car and pay the $7 parking fee. That's different from what's required for taxis at Myrtle Beach International Airport. MYR mandates taxis pay a monthly rate, while Uber drivers pay every time they go into the airport.
Taxicab drivers follow a large list of requirements just to be able to operate their vehicle at MYR. Now Uber has some requirements of its own. The compromise between state lawmakers specified TNC cars, which include Uber, must meet a 19-point safety inspection and removable emblem to identify their vehicles when they're available for riders.
"You have to have a background check, to have to have driving records and you have to have your vehicle inspected," said the local Uber driver. "The only thing that we don't have but they have to have is the chauffeur's license."
Taxicab drivers, Uber drivers, and airport officials all want things to be equal and fair.
MYR officials said that they just want to be able to manage TNCs and will work on a solution to make taxicab and Uber fees fair and equal.