Uber is warning drivers of higher prices and more time in the queue as the city of Toronto puts a freeze on new licences.
On Friday, Toronto city council approved an amendment that prevents the taxi industry from obtaining new taxi licences until at least 2021.
The move follows a months-long row between the city’s taxi industry and drivers, which culminated in drivers’ mass protests against the company.
Uber to appeal Toronto ruling to continue operating Read more
The company has long complained about congestion, long wait times, and poor gas service in Toronto.
Uber announced in a tweet that drivers in Toronto who are not on its customers’ waiting lists may begin to see higher prices and increased waits because of the added demand.
Uber tweeted in a tweet: “As soon as you’re notified, sign up to be one of 1,500 new UberX drivers right here in Toronto! All Toronto UberX drivers will be eligible for a referral bonus, which will make you eligible for paid advertising. It’s the only way to get promoted right now – and you’ll get up to $500 to get started.
“In the meantime, you’ll be waiting longer for your next ride.”
In another tweet, the company said it was working with drivers to ease the “exorbitant and sometimes unnecessary wait times”.
Uber (@Uber) If you’re not on Uber’s waiting list yet, get in touch with us today – you’ll be automatically placed on the waitlist. You will continue to be charged for the rides you take today.
“Join the dialogue. We need to make Uber better for you, so stay tuned for more info as soon as it’s available.”
Rachel Notley, the leader of Alberta’s NDP government, praised the city’s decision to freeze new licences.
Notley said in a statement: “This is the right decision, and one that has been supported by Alberta. In several cities across Alberta, Uber drivers have been paying unfairly high costs to ferry passengers around the city. The resulting congestion and long waits cause problems for other travellers and businesses, and can even lead to injuries and death.
“By freezing new licences, the City of Toronto is helping its citizens feel more secure in using Uber, and is protecting all of the people who get around the city on a daily basis.”
An Uber spokesman told the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation: “It’s frustrating to see politicians have their knee-jerk response to a business dispute, and create parking troubles when they think that will be a helpful solution.
“We look forward to working with the City of Toronto to ensure that new licensed drivers benefit as a result of the freeze.”
In June, the ride-hailing company said it would appeal a ruling from a Toronto judge that kept it operating in the city and in the city’s taxicab industry.