The Montreal airport has an illegal taxi problem and its regulatory authority is calling for a crackdown.
According to the A-D-M, (Aeroports de Montreal) nearly 400 tickets for infractions related to vehicles operating without a proper permit have been issued since January.
Airport authority spokeswoman Anne-Sophie Hamel says they sometimes see taxis with fake Uber stickers on their cars, or even cars with fake taxi domes.
Hamel says other incidents involve legitimate taxis that don’t have a permit to operate at the airport or freebooters that don’t even bother to dress up as a cab or ride-hailing service.
Bloated prices, aggressive solicitation and even threats make up some of the concerns.
She says there are passenger complaints that some drivers go to them and take their luggage almost without even asking.
Hamel adds these drivers tend to target international arrivals, who may be less familiar with the airport and local taxi protocols.
Illegal taxis are not as big a problem at Canada’s three other biggest airports – Toronto, Vancouver and Calgary.
Peel Regional Police, which patrols Toronto’s Pearson airport, says it received four calls in the first three months of the year related to “scoopers” – unlicensed taxi drivers or chauffeurs who seek to pick up airport passengers.
The issue in Quebec arises from legal changes ushered in by a law known as Bill 17.
Passed in 2019, it wove ride-hailing services such as Uber and Eva into the province’s regulatory framework while scrapping its pricey taxi permit system and lifting a ban on asking potential passengers if they’re looking for a ride.