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Taxi drivers protest at Hilton Anaheim Hotel


Dozens of taxi drivers staged a protest Thursday outside the Hilton Anaheim Hotel to dispute what they view as the establishment’s unfair practice of barring certain taxi companies from picking up guests at the hotel.

Bill Gray, manager of an Anaheim taxi franchise company, said there were three taxicab franchises allowed to operate in Anaheim, and the franchise agreement states that these companies are allowed to do business in resort and non-resort areas.

But the Hilton would only allow drivers from Yellow Cab of Greater Orange County to line up in front of the property to pick up guests while drivers from A Taxi Cab and California Yellow Cab were being prevented from stopping there, according to Gray.

“The Hilton is violating the franchise in addition to depriving drivers of convention traffic through the monopoly of business,” Gray said.

A representative in the sales and marketing office of the hotel said no one was available for comment and declined to offer any details about the hotel’s relationship with area taxi companies.

Gray said the drivers were particularly upset because there was a small convention taking place at the convention center, and visitors would typically walk over to the hotel to catch a cab.

Gray said that during conventions there was usually plenty of business to go around for the area’s taxi drivers. In fact, guests would often flag down taxis, whose drivers are not allowed to stop at the hotel.

Gray said Hilton officials had so far been unwilling to negotiate and their action would ultimately be bad for business.

“It degrades the image of the Anaheim Convention Center,” Gray said.

Further protests were planned, Gray and some taxi drivers said.

-- Ann M. Simmons

Photo: Drivers with Anaheim's A Taxi Cab, including Abdul Gul, 50, of Garden Grove, center, protest in front of the Hilton hotel at the Anaheim Convention Center. Credit: Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times

Comments () | Archives (6)

Why not use the Anaheim Hiltons own strategy?
No one book a room with them, just go to their two other competitors, say Ramada and Holiday Inn. Not only for the property in California, but internationally too. This and the damage Hiltons granddaughter has rought on their good will should be enough to bring this sleezy activity to its knees.

You don't know the story. For years bad drivers refused trips, had fights and came with filthy cars. Hilton had enough of it. More and more people were turning to the Black Cars because of it. Yellow Cab cleaned it up and saved the cab business there.

Maybe the other two companies should offer as big a kick-back to the GM (Harrold) and AGM (Lisa) of the hotel so that they are then also allowed to pick-up, drop-off and wait for guests. Isn't that how it works?

It truly is a shame and embarrassment what Blackstone and Paris have done to the good Hilton name.

I see taxis in various situations around southern California, and I think most are childish, over-aggressive and don't deserve the business.

In Santa Monica, on Santa Monica Westboud, between 4th and the 3rd St. Promenade, the drivers, cause traffic jams, hover in alleys blocking alleys and sidewalks.

I've stayed at hotels in San Diego, where I've been awoken by taxi drivers arguing, talking loudly, playing radios, gambling, etc.

At LAX, I've been given terrible service because I happen to live too close to the airport. One such rude driver got a mark against his license for the stellar bad service he gave.

I don't know if any of these play a part in Hilton's decision, but I know if I ran a hotel, it would play into decision to provide the best service to my customers.

LA Taxi Conglomerate buys Orange County Taxi Company. LA Tactics in play now. Tactics outlawed in 2005 by LA Taxi commission because of the poor conditions of drivers who must service exclusives. No one to stop them in Orange County...Except some p.o. ed drivers. Why doesnt the county of Orange do something ?>

driving a taxi is a profession to be taken into consideration.
all taxi drivers need to work hard for a living.
that is why no restriction should be made where they are nedded.
specially, in places like hotels or airports where they know passengers are always available.
taxi do soustain many companies out there.


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