Sofia taxis under increased scrutiny

Bulgarian traffic inspectors and Sofia’s centre for urban mobility have started a three-day inspection of taxicabs in the Bulgarian capital city, focusing primarily on cars that stop on street lanes, creating traffic congestion for public transport, Bulgarian National Television (BNT) reported on January 17.

The inspectors are checking all the paperwork, ensuring that the cabs are in working order, BNT said. On the first day of checks, three drivers were fined 200 leva each for unspecified offenses.

Shopping malls are a particular target for cab drivers seeking customers, creating long queues that make traffic more difficult for other motorists, inspectors said. Public transportation stops are another area where cabs will often stop in breach of existing regulations.

One cab driver interviewed by BNT said that the practice was widespread because it yielded results. “If we were to stop only in the areas reserved for us, we’d go home with no money at the end of the day,” he said.

(Taxis at Sofia railway station. Photo: Clive Leviev-Sawyer)



The Sofia Globe staff

The Sofia Globe - the Sofia-based fully independent English-language news and features website, covering Bulgaria, the Balkans and the EU. Sign up to subscribe to's daily bulletin through the form on our homepage.