Uber warns of higher prices and longer wait times following Toronto’s decision to freeze new licences for ride-hailing companies after Uber and its rivals raised prices in the city.
The company did not respond immediately to a request for comment on the impact of the decision, nor did it say whether it plans to appeal.
The move was a dramatic departure for Uber, which had been using new licences across major cities to broaden its reach and bolster its chances of cracking the $30-billion market.
Toronto council voted to block new Uber and Lyft licences and keep the company’s current licences frozen for another six months, in a bid to push Uber back to licensing new drivers in other cities.
The decision comes amid a surge in the number of drivers and riders who have turned to sharing economy services such as Uber, Lyft or others in an effort to cut down on car-riding costs.
The company has faced criticism over allegations it has inflated its reported drivers’ median salary, with a study by a University of Michigan labor expert saying the median income claimed by Uber’s app is lower than the median in other cities.
In response to the criticism, Uber announced it would no longer claim its drivers were being paid more than the median in cities across Canada.
“We believe we are providing an exceptional product and service to drivers and riders, and we will continue to invest in the growth of our platform,” an Uber Canada spokesperson said in a statement.
“We continue to make changes and adjustments to our ridership and driver experience and are always open to feedback.”