Norfolk airport authority discusses agreement with Uber

Posted at 5:51 PM, Dec 10, 2015
and last updated 2015-12-10 23:07:09-05

Norfolk, Va. - Uber will be banned from the Norfolk International Airport until they come to an agreement with the Airport Authority.

The topic was brought up during the committee's regularly scheduled meeting today at the airport.

Airport Advisory members say Uber is welcome there and they want to do business with them, but that's only if they sign the same agreement and pay the same fees as another transportation app, Lyft.

After July of this year, it is now a Virginia state law for Transportation Network Companies, or TWC's, such as Uber and Lyft, to have an agreement with airports where they drop-off and pick-up passengers.

Executive Director of the Airport Advisory, Wayne Shank, says after doing some research, they invited both Uber and Lyft to negotiate that agreement.

He says Lyft took their offer to come to the table, but Uber didn't.

"When Lyft came and negotiated that deal, Uber was still not talking to us so we needed to move on," says Shank.

The agreement requires that Lyft pays a $10,000 security deposit, a $5,000 annual fee and a $2.00 charge for each drop-off and pick-up.

Uber has since sent two different proposals, according to Shank, to lower the pick-up and drop-off fees. They also sent their customers a message to e-mail city council to enforce the change

The Airport Authority discussed that they would not change the agreement for Uber since Lyft was cooperative from the start.

In a statement to NewsChannel 3, an Uber spokeswoman says, "It is unfair that the Airport Authority wants to single out riders who chose options like Uber by imposing such high pickup and drop-off fees on Uber trips, and we believe such fees will negatively impact our driver-partners’ businesses. Despite our effort to negotiate in good faith - and offer several solutions - we continue to be unable to reach an agreement with the Airport Authority."

Currently, if users try to open the Uber app within the airport, a message pops up saying that Uber drivers are not allowed to pick-up people at the airport.