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Rideshare drivers hit a bump as their demands remain unmet

By Rayya Al Muheisen - Aug 18,2022 - Last updated at Aug 18,2022

Representative image (File photo)

AMMAN — Rideshare drivers say they are “fed up” with authorities’ failure to pay attention to their demands, including extending the operational age of their vehicles, reducing the registration fees and allowing people over 60 to work using the apps, among other demands, and might boycott the licensing of their vehicles in the case that their demands are not met.

The Prime Ministry issued an amendment in the Official Gazette stating that the operational age for ride-hailing app cars will be extended from five to seven years. 

“This decision has been effective since 2019,” Lorance Refai, Applications Drivers’ Union Spokesperson, told The Jordan Times on Wednesday. 

“Our [original] demand was to extend the operational age to 10 years,” said Refai. 

According to an official document made available to The Jordan Times, the decision to increase the operational age from five to seven years was signed in October 2019. Furthermore, drivers have been licensing their six and seven-year-old cars since that time, according to several drivers. 

“My car was manufactured in 2016. I’m still working with one of the applications, and I was able to renew my licence in March,” Ahmad Tayeh, a rideshare driver, told The Jordan Times. 

Refai stated that the union presented several demands to Parliament, which included allowing drivers over the age of 60 to work with ride sharing applications, lowering the percentage paid to the application and reducing the permit fees from JD400 to JD200, according to a document made available to The Jordan Times. 

“The union is considering a complete boycott of the Land Transportation Regulatory Commission (LTRC) licensing fees, which amount to JD400 in annual fees for each car,” Refai added. 

Refai stated that the licensing fees add to the expenses of drivers and do not provide any sort of protection for them. “The only way to dismiss the boycott is to reduce the fees to JD200,” said Refai.

“We are only allowed to work with one application. If a driver gets caught working with an application other than the app he’s registered with, he ends up getting a ticket for hundreds of dinars,” Refai added. 

 “We are barely making the money to pay off our loans, and our loans extend 10 years. How are we supposed to renew our cars every seven years?” asked Abu Omar, another application driver. 

Abu Omar told The Jordan Times that when a car used for ride-hailing app is sold, it is considered “salvaged” due to the very high mileage, with car dealers reducing almost 50 per cent of its worth. 

“Have mercy for people. We want to work. We are not waiting to receive government aid,” Abu Omar said. 

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