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Phuket Opinion: The meter of madness

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Phuket Opinion: The meter of madness
Phuket Gazette -

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METERED TAXIS: They look innocent enough. Photo: Gazette file

PHUKET: After landing at Phuket Airport on October 7, I passed all the scam businesses and made my way to the metered taxi stand.

I’ve used it for years and know that despite the word “metered” in the name, the price is fixed, about 550 baht to Patong.

But with the Department of Special Investigation (DSI) visits, it’s a new era. I asked the price to Patong. I was answered, “We only go by meter.” So far so good.

I told the staff that I wanted to go via Surin instead of over the dangerous mountain road in Kathu. They told me that it would be more expensive to go that way. I said fine.

Then I paid 100 baht surcharge and got a stamped receipt. This surcharge has been levied for years – legally or not, I don’t know.

Inside the taxi, the meter was on 50 baht. I asked why. No answer. 150 baht just to leave the airport.

No problem, I could afford it.

I told the driver the name of my hotel. He’d never heard of it. I said, “I can show you the way,” but he preferred to stop at his office near the airport to ask directions.

A woman came out to ask the hotel name. I said, “I will show him, just get me to Patong.” Pointing to the running meter, I said, “Let’s leave.” Then the boss came and asked about the hotel. I said, “The meter is running, let’s go now!”

“You are a crazy man,” was the only thing he said, several times. We took off. Before long, I told the driver that we had overshot the junction to Surin by several kilometers.

“Where are you going?” I asked him.

“I go Kathu way,” he answered.

“No, no, we agreed on the Surin way,” I said.

“No, we go Kathu,” he answered with a dangerous look.

I asked him to call his boss and they argued for a long time before he made a u-turn.

He was very angry by this time and I realized the threat. Thinking of all the stabbed taxi customers in Thailand, I tried to stay calm.

When we arrived, I jumped out of the taxi and asked for a receipt. He just shook his head, “No have.”

The trip was 635 baht on the meter. I took a photo and gave him a 65-baht tip to ensure that I could walk out of my hotel later that day without getting beaten up.

Metered taxis seem like a good idea, if they drive the shortest way and don’t mess it all up with wrong directions and stopping at their office and so on.

Not giving a receipt sounds like a tax scam. How many trips do the owners actually report? Does anyone dare to ask?

Source: http://www.phuketgazette.net/phuket_news/2013/Phuket-Opinion-The-meter-of-madness-22692.html

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-- Phuket Gazette 2013-1-03

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They know how to make money even with meter.... We have the same problems here in Bkk

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I've never been able to get a receipt in a Thai taxi. I always carry my own receipt book, fill it out and get the driver to sign it...always after I've tipped him of course. Regarding your trip, in hindsight, it may have been better after all to use the flat rate taxis; this way, if they get lost you aren't paying for it.

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What? 13 quid? Think about it.

Think about it, with your logic its ok paying a inflated above normal taxi prices in London because taxis are more expensive in Zurich or Oslo..........

The capital of Norway, Oslo, is a pretty expensive city, and its taxi is affordable only to real millionaires. Not all people are aware of this fact, and have to pay incredible money in the end of a misfortunate trip. Some tourists that use low-cost flights spend more money on a transfer from the airport to their hotel than on the trip itself...........Yet, the most expensive taxi can be found in Zurich, Switzerland. http://www.pulpengine.com/2013/08/top-5-expensive-taxis-world/

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They know how to make money even with meter....  We have the same problems here in Bkk

 

BKK taxis have issues too, but when was the last time you paid anything close to 800baht to go anywhere?

Sent from my iPhone using Thaivisa Connect Thailand mobile app

  • Like 1

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Taxi driving only attracts the lowest in society. Same all over the world and even in a more regulated industry compared to Thailand.

Thugs, immigrants, drug dealers and addicts.

You won't get a university educated professor discussing quantum physics as you cruise in safety through Surin.

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The 100 Baht is the Airport charge for the Taxi stand ,which use to be 50B , and is how the Metered cabs pass on to the customers their rental cost plus their employee salaries and I'm sure a lot of profit!

Still ,in Rome 27years ago it was 50$ from Vatican area to airport. I shudder to think what it costs now , Bkk still is one of the best deals for taxis in the world ,if you don't have to argue to much over using the meter.If you figure in Patong it cost me to go a1/2 of a kilometer 200Baht from my house to Jungceylon ,that may be right up their with many big western city prices for taxis and its not even air-conditioned. Then your not sure if in a accident is there insurance to cover your injuries ,not to even say that the driver just beat the <deleted> out of you cause you were a farang!

Edited by metisdead
Overly large font reset to normal.

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Oh......I thought this article was going to be about that incredibly stupid idea of putting parking meters along the beach road in Patong to solve the parking problem.

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They know how to make money even with meter.... We have the same problems here in Bkk

Er, no you dont

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Who wrote this nonsense article? About £13 to go to Patong Beach - 'tis a bargain.

A nonsense comment wooloomooloo....facepalm.gif

Edited by andreandre
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What? 13 quid? Think about it.

I have. It's a rip-off. It's cheap if you live in London, bloody expensive here. Think about it ... whistling.gif

Edited by Mister Fixit
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