Ahead of the tourist season Monaco and France have reached an agreement on the circulation of taxis and VTC (Limos etc.) within the Principality and on both sides of the border. This will allow “people-transport professionals” to work in both territories.
For a short period since the beginning of 2023 Monegasque transport professionals were prohibited from loading customers in France, and vice versa for French drivers in Monaco. That system of “only loading at home” is discontinued with immediate effect.
It had actually changed at the end of March when the Prince’s government announced that from 1 April 2023, 320 “seasonal” vignettes (until the end of October) would again be given to French taxis and VTCs to facilitate them dropping off and picking up customers in the Principality.
The objective was to offer a quality service to tourists as the high tourist season approaches.
The 300 VTCs and 20 French taxis eligible for this vignette (announced at the single price of 600 euros for 7 months) must meet criteria ranging from the quality of reception to the technical characteristics of the vehicle. These criteria are those already in force, designed and agreed to, in some French departments.
The core of this taxis and limos (VTCs) agreement has just been reconfirmed.
Reciprocity for Monaco Taxis and Limos
It, of course, remains for the French side to offer reciprocity for Monegasque taxis and “large discount vehicles” (equivalent to French VTCs) particularly with respect to Nice airport.
Access to Nice Côte d’Azur airport for Monegasque taxis and Monegasque limos has in the past been the subject of tensions which the agreement is intended to resolve.
The agreement that has just been confirmed and reported in the press has
three essential points:
• The charter was drawn up and signed between French taxis and VTCs and Monegasque taxis and “discount vehicles”
• There will be a “correspondence” between the vignettes granted to French taxis to operate in Monaco and the macaroons given to Monaco drivers to access the reserved areas at Nice Côte d’Azur airport
• The arrangement will not be limited to the high season but will be valid “all year round”
What about the Reciprocal Arrangement for Monegasque taxis and Limos etc?
In return for the decisions that are taken within Monaco, Monegasque taxis and Monegasque limos etc. would need to have access to French territory and more specifically to Nice Côte d’Azur airport.
Nice Côte d’Azur airport is the second largest airport in France, serving vibrant cities such as Nice and Cannes, and also Monaco, which represents a large part of the clientele of this airport.
The Principality has a 10% shareholder interest in Nice airport and has a significant share of business customers beyond the number of people who land in Nice and who then visit the Principality. This is a high-level VIP-style clientele, with significant spending power. For this clientele, the quality of the service needs to be the best possible and particularly during the major events including congresses and events such as the Rolex Masters, the Grands Prix and the Yacht show. Monaco needs to have enough professionals who can pass freely on the French side and on the Monegasque side.
The Principality is reported to have on its territory, a little less than a hundred taxis and as many Limo-style vehicles. To put things in perspective the neighboring department has a fleet of around 1,200 taxis and 4,000 VTCs.
For the time being, the princely government is still awaiting the green light from the French authorities. “It is necessary that this device be accompanied by reciprocity”, insisted the Minister of State, Pierre Dartout. It’s “common sense”.