Taxi drivers

Omicron scare dampens prospects for airport taxi drivers – The New Indian Express

Express press service

TIRUCHY: The extension of the ban on scheduled international fights and the postponement of holiday plans on the Omicron variant of the coronavirus have shaken the hopes of airport taxi drivers to cash in on the season.

“There are about 40 taxi drivers in the airport. Although we have international flights from Singapore, Malaysia, Dubai and other countries, we don’t get much revenue because we don’t get as many operations than before. At the moment most of us earn just £15,000 a month. But after paying the loan for the vehicle and other expenses we would not have much left. We hopefully we will have more income during Pongal. But growing concerns about Omicron have left us with more worries,” said Murugan, a taxi driver at the airport.

Expecting to cash in on the holiday season, a group of taxi drivers operating outside the airport premises have launched a website (http://www.trichyairporttaxi.com). The current situation also worries them.

“We pooled money and launched the website in May. We thought it would help us compete with online taxi operators during the holiday season. But the website didn’t help us much. We We were hoping it would bring us revenue during during the holiday season, but if passengers postpone their holiday trips for New Year and Pongal due to Omicron, we would suffer heavy losses,” said taxi driver Vinoth .

Drivers, however, continue to pin their hopes on the arrival of Tamils ​​residing abroad during Pongal.

“Before Covid, we were earning around £20,000 per month. But now we are struggling to earn £10,000 per month. Although international tourists may avoid visiting the city due to Covid, we hope that our residents residing in Sharjah,Dubai,Malaysia,Singapore and other countries would fall during Pongal.We would face heavy losses if they also postpone their travel plans due to Omicron.Although we are also afraid of being infected by the one here, we ignore them to support our family.

We hope Omicron doesn’t mess up our business this holiday season,” said Sakthivel, an airport taxi driver for 10 years.