Dishonest Taxi Drivers Working for Taxi S Express at Sofia Airport
Dear Editors of Novinite,
I am writing to you with regard to the taxi services offered at Sofia Airport, particularly at Terminal 2.
My name is Diego Lucci and I am Italian. I am a professor at the American University in Bulgaria, and I have lived in Blagoevgrad for almost six years.
On December 30, 2011, I took a Bulgaria Air flight from Rome to Sofia Airport's Terminal 2.
After landing around 13.30, I wanted to take a taxi of one of the two taxi companies authorized by the Airport. Unfortunately, there was no taxi of OK Supertrans.
On the other hand, many taxi drivers working for Taxi S Express approached me and, when I said that I had to go to the Central Bus Station in Sofia, they had different reactions: some of them offered to bring me to my final destination (i.e. Blagoevgrad), while others proposed prices between 20 and 30 euros for a drive to the Central Bus Station (while the normal price is around 10 leva).
One of them told me that the price would be that displayed by his car's taximeter. I saw that his car was part of Taxi S Express and it displayed on its door glasses the normal prices practiced by this company. Therefore, I chose this taxi, which had the following registration number: Sofia 0580 .. (I cannot remember the two final letters).
This taxi driver was extremely strange. He insisted to take two more people, whom I did not know and had to go to the Central Bus Station. Moreover, he kept smoking a cigarette in his taxi, became very rude after leaving the airport, and was also very dirty and stinky. But the worst thing is that, after two kilometers or so from the airport, the taximeter had already reached the amount of 10 leva. So, I told him that there was something wrong with his taximeter, and he stopped the car, asked me to get out, and left me on Boulevard Bruxells, in the middle of nowhere. In the end, I walked until the nearest OMV fuel station and called an OK Supertrans taxi from there.
Later, I called the company Taxi S Express and informed the call center operator about what had happened to me. I gave the switchboard operator the taxi's registration number, and she told me that the company would inquire about that taxi driver.
My concerns can be summarized as follows: how can the company Taxi S Express tolerate that its employees behave so unprofessionally and dishonestly when picking foreigners up at Sofia Airport? How can the managers of Sofia Airport tolerate that taxi drivers try to deceive travelers inside of the airport's facilities? In fact, those taxi drivers' behavior is a very bad way to introduce Bulgaria to foreigners who come here for holidays or business and, in many cases, plan to invest their money in the country. Do the authorities realize that such a blatant display of dishonesty can discourage foreign tourists and investors from bringing their money to Bulgaria?
I thank you for your kind attention and I hope that the managers of Taxi S Express, the direction of Sofia Airport, and the Bulgarian authorities will do something to put an end to those taxi drivers' unprofessional, unethical and dishonest conduct, which is definitely detrimental to Bulgaria's reputation and economy.
Prof. Diego Lucci
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