QCOSTARICA – Given the popularity of Uber in San Jose and the Central Valley, some car rental agencies are looking to cash in, to expand it customer base, attracting drivers who want to work with Uber but don’t have a car.
Despite the insistence of authorities that Uber is illegal, car rental agencies are offering drivers a vehicle in return for being registered as an Uber driver and % of the trip or a fixe monthly fee.
On its website, the private transport company explains the benefits of renting through ANC Ground Services, a division of Grupo ANC that is the franchisee for National, Alamo and Enterprise car rentals. The group has a fleet of over 3.000 vehicles.
Under the ANC deal, drivers agree to hand over 40% of the fare in lieu of a rental, must earn at least ¢200,000 colones (net) weekly, be 25 and over, licensed for a minimumof two years, be a high school graduate, have a garage for the car and a bank account. In addition, drivers will be responsible for paying insurance, weekly preventive maintenance costs, fuel and security deposit on the rental.
Another, Centriz (Budget Rent a Car), offers a similar deal with one exception, a fixed montly rental fee for the vehicle instead of a percentage or earnings.
Paulo Vargas, general manager of Centriz, said they are doing nothing illegal by providing a vehicle for Uber drivers. “At the moment the Constitutional Court rules in favour of or against (Uber), it will comply with any order”.
Critical. “There is a desperation in various sectors and one of them are rental car agencies,” said Gilbert Ureña, Foro Nacional de Taxistas. National Taxi Drivers Forum).
According to Ureña, these companies (car rental agencies) are setting themselves up lose their licenses (and vehicles) by renting cars to Uber drivers, and accuses the car rentals and the government of being complicit in an illegal service.
Traffic police. In February, the Policia de Transito (traffic police) seized a car of an driver surnamed Leandro. The vehicle has since been released, but the case against the alleged Uber driver continues.