Foreigner-Only Cabs from March
In a piece of news that may be hailed or assailed, the Korea Times reports that plans are in the works to start foreigner-only cabs in March.
Drivers will be versed in several languages (e.g. English, Japanese, Chinese) but the one line they can all say shares these four words: 20 percent higher fare.
Here’s the article link and excerpt:
By Kang Shin-who
Seoul City said it would introduce some 1,000 taxis for foreign nationals from next March to provide better cab services, however, the fares will be higher.
Foreign residents and tourists will be able to call the taxis at all times, and drivers who can speak English, Japanese, Chinese and other foreign languages will be available. The taxies will have special stickers or designs to distinguish them from ordinary ones.
Fares are expected to be about 20 percent higher than normal cab charges. They will accept credit card payments. Also, fixed fares depending on hours and distances will be offered to prevent possible disputes.
Four call taxi companies, including Navi Call, will be designated as operators of these cabs.
Has anyone got the feeling that only executives from the hotels will be taking these cabs? It doesn’t strike me that these cabs will be easy to find or show value in terms of ease of communication. Besides, it’s as though the choice is: a) be ripped off from a guy you can’t talk to or b) talk to the guy who is officially ripping you off.