E-hailing drivers have expressed their disapproval against paying a charge of RM10 if they wait more than five minutes for passengers at KLIA and klia2's new pick-up points
Since Saturday, 12 October, e-hailing drivers are required to use their Touch 'n Go (TnG) cards, debit or credit paywave cards to enter the two new designated pick-up locations at both the Kuala Lumpur International airports.
According to the drivers, they cannot rely on passengers to be punctual.
Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd (MAHB) has introduced a new rule that charges drivers RM10 penalty fee if their customers are late by five minutes to the pick-up points. The penalty is served as a deterrent for e-hailing cars holding up traffic space.
Additionally, starting 1 November, a company that serves as a 'queue manager' will charge e-hailing drivers RM5 for each pick-up at klia2, reported The Star.
Malaysia E-hailing Drivers Association president Daryl Chong said the five-minute window is "totally unfair"
Chong said it is impossible for e-hailing drivers to complete pick-ups within five minutes as many passengers often book a ride even before they step out of the arrival hall.
"Their walk to the new pick-up points may take up to 20 minutes. And for passengers who are not familiar with the vicinity around the airport, they will take even more time," he said, as quoted by The Star.
"We understand MAHB wants a proper pick-up place for e-hailing services and they don't want drivers to clog up the small area. We also understand the RM10 charge is a form of deterrent.
"But the allowed five-minute waiting time is too short and troubling drivers," Chong said, adding that the waiting window should be extended to 15 minutes.
Chong also urged e-hailing companies to update their apps to make the new pick-up points the only locations they can find their drivers
Over the weekend, New Straits Times reported that many drivers and passengers were not aware about the new pick-up points.
E-hailing drivers are now only allowed to pick up passengers at Doors 3 and 4, Level 1 of the Main Terminal Building at KLIA, and at Door 5, Level 1 of the Transportation Hub at klia2.
Previously, e-hailing drivers were able to pick up passengers at arrival exits of both airports - just like how the public, taxis, and airport limousines can.
A spokesperson of an e-hailing company, who declined to be named, said that the new change is unfair for the e-hailing drivers because other ride service providers do not have to follow the same rule, reported The Star.
"Why are only the e-hailing drivers getting penalised for waiting and not the taxis and airport limousines," he asked.
When announcing the move last Friday, MAHB chief executive officer Raja Azmi Raja Nazuddin said the change is meant to smoothen the traffic at KLIA and klia2
In a press release, Malaysia Airports said there is a complimentary waiting area for e-hailing drivers at Landside Operations office which is just five minutes away from the terminals.
They said e-hailing drivers will be able to pick up passengers within five minutes at the new pick-up points if the latter waited at the free designated parking area ahead.