Taxi Drivers in Bulgaria Demand Significant Fare Increase

Amidst growing discontent among taxi operators across Bulgaria, drivers in major cities like Burgas, Varna, and now Plovdiv are demanding a substantial hike in fares to cope with rising operational costs. Following in the footsteps of their colleagues, taxi drivers in Plovdiv have joined the chorus, pushing for a drastic increase in service rates.

The outcry began when taxi drivers in Burgas and Varna voiced their grievances at the end of 2023 and the beginning of this week, respectively, demanding a 15% increase in tariffs. Now, taxi drivers in Plovdiv are echoing similar sentiments, threatening daily protests if their demands are not met.

Despite sending letters with their requests to the municipality, drivers have yet to receive a response, leaving them feeling unheard and frustrated. The National Association for the Protection of Carriers and Taxi Drivers officially submitted a request to Mayor Kostadin Dimitrov in February, but to no avail.

The heart of the issue lies in the stagnant fare rates that have remained unchanged since 2014. Current regulations restrict taxi operators, with municipalities setting minimum and maximum rates per kilometer traveled during the day and at night. With fares hovering near the maximum allowed limit, taxi drivers argue that they are unable to cover their expenses adequately.

The Association of Taxi Drivers is advocating for a minimum daily fare of 1.30 BGN and a revised night fare of 1.40 BGN to alleviate financial strain. They argue that this adjustment is essential to keep pace with inflation and ensure fair compensation for their services.

Currently, most taxis in Plovdiv charge 1.09 BGN per kilometer during the day and 1.19 BGN at night. The proposed fare increase would provide drivers...

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