LOS ANGELES — Dozens of taxi drivers, many chanting and some carrying signs, paraded through the Los Angeles International Airport terminal area Monday, demanding the return of curbside pickups for cab passengers.
Members of the Taxi Workers Alliance of Los Angeles took part in the midday protest, continuing to press their claims that the ability to pick up passengers directly at terminal curbsides was the only competitive advantage they had over ride-hailing services such as Uber and Lyft.
Curbside pickups ended in October when the airport opened its LAX-it lot, requiring passengers to walk or take a shuttle bus to pick up rides in cabs or ride-hailing vehicles.
Cab drivers taking part in Monday’s march said they have seen a dramatic drop in business since the lot opened, and some said passengers are equally upset about the new arrangement.
“People are complaining,” cab driver Farah Vanuriengen told The Daily Breeze. “Because of the hassle and because they have to get into a bus, everyone is aggravated.”
Airport officials have insisted they had to move taxis and ride- hailing pickups to the remote lot because the Central Terminal Area had become too congested with vehicles, and the situation was getting increasingly worse. The congestion was further compounded by construction in the terminal area.
There were no reports of any disruptions to flight operations due to the protest.