Budapest – A man was waiting for the ordered Bolt taxi with his Israeli friends at the VII. district Madách Imre út 2-6 before on October 2 at around 2 p.m. The driver arrived on time, and the three passengers got into the car. Instead of leaving, the taxi driver said to the passengers, who were speaking in Hebrew: Get out!.
The two Israelis looked at each other confused, and the Hungarian member of the group thought at first that he was hearing badly. Then when he came to, he asked the driver what he meant.
“I’m not taking you anywhere,” snapped the Bolt driver, saying he didn’t owe an explanation. Later he added that “because I don’t feel like it”. He rolled the car a few meters, then pulled over to the curb and again ordered the passengers to get out. They had no choice, so they did. Since the car passed Madách Imre út 2-6. from No. 8 to Madách Imre út 8, i.e. to the neighboring block, they were charged HUF 510 transport fee.
The Israeli passengers were an 86-year-old father and his 50-year-old daughter, a retired architect and an interior decorator. Even by accident, they couldn’t give the impression that we were rowdies who had to be ordered out of the car before leaving.
The passenger wrote about what happened to Bolt. In the first, the company responded that they distanced themselves from what happened and launched an investigation into the matter. They later informed us that they have investigated the incident and taken the necessary steps, but due to data protection law, they are unable to share further details.
The passenger was amazed by this answer, as he had provided the driver’s details, the exact location and time to the Shop when submitting the complaint, and by definition he was not interested in additional personal information.
We also conducted an experiment with the company, which is present in more than 500 cities in 45 countries, to see if they would at least reveal whether the presumably antisemitic or xenophobic driver can still transport passengers under the auspices of Bolt, but essentially we got the same answer as the passenger. They expressed their regret, then pointed out that Bolt deeply condemns all forms of antisemitism, racism, and hate speech, and they completely distance themselves from the behavior of the driver in question.
They also wrote that the drivers are not employed by Bolt, but are independent partners who use their platform for their services. “However, we are in regular communication with them and constantly checking passenger feedback to ensure that passengers get the best service,” they added. However, no further information was provided after that, citing the data protection law. We asked the company which point in the legislation we are referring to, and neither we nor the complainant can receive – anonymous – information about the specific result of the investigation against the driver and its consequences, but to no avail.
In order to avoid violations of data protection laws and obstruction of justice, we do not consider it appropriate to issue further statements they wrote in their letter. Which is also interesting because transport companies typically announce that they fire their employees due to some proven scandalous case.