Uber Drivers Fight For Business to Serve Palm Springs Visitors - Palm Springs News, Weather, Traffic, Breaking News

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Uber Drivers Fight For Business to Serve Palm Springs Visitors

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Palm Springs, CA -

Finding an Uber ride these days can be pretty simple but at the Palm Springs Airport, getting to that Uber driver is a little more difficult and there are more challenges facing these drivers every day, starting with law enforcement.

Ticket in hand, a local Uber driver is hoping for better days to come after getting a citation from Palm Springs Police after attempting to pick up a customers across from the airport.

"We can't pick up on the airport side," said James Smith.

That's because their employer, Uber, doesn't require drug testing. It's a requirement for any transportation services to actually pick-up at the airport. Taxi drivers get those tests which is the reason they're able to service visitors just feet from the airport doors.

"We can't pick up on the curb because it's red, so now where do we pick up that's safe for the tourists who are spending money in this city," said Smith.

Most recently, the Uber drivers moved to the parking lots across from the airport, city hall and the courthouse but police quickly intervened, patrolling and ticketing.

"He took a picture of my license plate and mailed me a ticket," said one Uber driver.

Not only did uber drivers have to deal with law enforcement but Smith says taxi drivers were against them too.

"Taxi drivers are telling people when they come across that we're two miles down the street and they're also telling them that we're criminals, so it's frustrating when we have to go through that whole process," he said.

Yesterday, KMIR made a call to the City of Palm Springs and there are already some answers.

"We'll ask them to be respectful of the rules in the parking lot but we won't be ticketing," said David Ready, Palm Springs City Manager.

He says the city council plans to discuss the Uber and Lyft dilemma at a future meeting in January where they may offer up solutions on how to get Uber drivers back on airport property.

Until then, there's still some hesitance among local drivers who feel they're doing their civic duty to help visitors get the most out of their valley experience.

"We're not against anything, we're just helping people to get around the city, that should help the city, not hurt the city...they should work with us, not against us," said Uber Driver, Abdul Marof.

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