TOLEDO, OHIO – Is Toledo Express Airport making a bad first impression on travelers? The problem has nothing to do with airplanes, visitors say it's the lack of ground transportation at Toledo Express that has them looking for other options. "For a smaller airport, it's a fine airport. But taxi and limo services for the airport is absolutely minor league," said business traveler Bill Taylor. For a recent business trip to Toledo, he said the plane landed around midnight and the airport was virtually shut down. The rental car companies were closed, forcing a planeload of people to share a single available limousine. "Had they taken that without allowing me to go with them, I wouldn't have had a ride back to town at midnight," Taylor said.
In recent years, the Toledo/Lucas County Port Authority banned taxis from waiting outside the airport, calling the service subpar. Expressions Limousine now has the exclusive contract. But a news report found the company only has four working cars, and when they fill up, late-night travelers must call a cab and wait.
"Most cities I go through, it's a 24 hour airport," said Dennis Seals. His plane landed early one recent morning, and he had no luck getting a vehicle.
"It's something we need to look at because we're not fulfilling our mission," said Port Authority spokesperson Brian Schwartz. Schwartz said contracting with one company was supposed to improve service quality, by allowing more oversight. “It's something we have to look at, and see what we can do about it," he said.
So, what are the options? The Port Authority promised to meet with the current limousine company to address concerns, and may even consider adding more companies. The Port Authority might even demand rental car companies to stay open until the last plane has landed.
Childers Limousine was the first to sign an exclusive agreement with the airport, but left in January after a disagreement with the airlines. That company had 40 available cars.