Greece’s taxi drivers federation (POEIATA) announced on Thursday, that payment by credit card through ride-sharing apps such as Beat and Uber are no longer allowed, citing an amendment passed in parliament.
According to the revision, taxi owners will now be required to install POS (point-of-sale) devices in order to accept credit or debit cards and to continue working with peer-to-peer ride-sharing companies. The revision also foresees changes to card transaction rates charged by ride-hailing firms.
Until recently, when a customer paid by card, ride-booking providers would receive the full amount, keep the commission and return the balance to the taxi driver through a bank account. The taxi driver was not required to have a POS device since transactions were carried out via debit or credit card.
Under the amended law, taxi drivers will now be required to collect the total amount through card transaction and will therefore need a POS device in order to continue working with ride-sharing companies. After receiving the full amount, the taxi driver will deposit the commission into the provider’s bank account.
More specifically, according to the federation’s announcement, drivers working with app companies are now required “to harmonize with the provisions of Law 4607/2019, in particular Article 75”.
“The amendment prohibits intermediary companies from collecting the fare. The fare is collected only by the taxi driver. The ride-booking providers’ commission is paid at the end of the month with the issue of a relevant invoice and relates only to the commission agreed,” said the Greek taxi federation in its announcement.
Proceeds from intermediary activity are taxed on the basis of applicable tax legislation.
Last year, Uber announced that it would be suspending its “uberX” service in Athens, after a bill regulating taxi services providers (Beat and Uber) was passed foreseeing a stricter framework of operations for the companies. Among other things, the bill tightened Greece’s taxi market, requiring e-platforms and apps offering taxi services (via phone or online) to operate as transport companies.