Jump to content

taxi, trike and other transportation 'mafias' in the Philippines


Recommended Posts

I remember my first time in the phil. My wife took me to a flower shop so I could buy her some flowers for valentines day. I asked her to take me because I didnt know my way around and she wont let me out on my own because of the muggings and robberies. Anyway a filopino was in there buying a dozen roses and the lady working there said thats 250 pesos to the guy. He left and I said I will take the same, a dozen roses. So she prepared them and gave them to me and said "550 pesos please". I looked at my wife and started laughing and I paid the girl. Outside my wife said whats so funny? I said the guy before me bought the same flowers for 250 pesos. My wife then laughed and said get used to it. I'm not one to complain. Plus I didn't want to cheapen the gift or myself by complaining. She is worth the extra 300 and they were nice flowers. Would I go back there? No. Have I bought my wife flowers since? Yes. It doesn't always pay to charge a tourist extra. I have spent much more then 300 php at other flower shops that did not over charge me.

 

Hmmm...not sure I would settle for such a blatant rip-off. I would be very very sure that my Honey Ko would be all in that vendors face about charging me more for the same goods.

 

I usually solve all those payment issues very simply. My woman has all the money when we go out, and pays for everything. When someone thinks of overcharging, they deal with her. 99% of the time, they don't even try it; the poor souls who do try to overcharge, end up wishing they had just dealt squarely.

 

Basic small market capitalism. Charge what the customer will bear.

 

My first trip was during Sinulog. Walking around downtown I got overheated and went to buy a San Mig from a street vendor. With her back turned to me she said "7 pesos Sir". After turning around she changed it to 15! I smiled, shook my finger and said "Seven is fine" while holding out the coins. She smiled back and replied "Salamat".

 

That's funny...too bad you didn't say "three for 15, I'll take it!"

 

Hear, hear! Foreigners should just bend over and let locals stick it up their ass whenever requested. Whatever happened to the good old days when people just got ripped off and shut their mouth about it? Crazy foreigners always complaining.

 

I agree...what the hell are we complaining about? We are all stinking rich kanos! 1000 pesos fall out of our pockets every time we sit down.... :D

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Replies 62
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

  • udonthani

    13

  • smokey

    9

  • Angie

    7

  • Doc Smith

    5

Top Posters In This Topic

Posted Images

liquido

I have to agree with Udonthani and Turbota on this one....We all have the money to pay the fare but knowing your getting it stuck up your ass is one thing..Even if i wanted to go across the street in a trike in AC they wanted 50p..I could not get a taxi to do a meter back to the airport there in AC,they all wanted 300p from the SM mall area..I walked over to the jeepney area there by SM and through a friend found out the right jeepney to get on that would drop me off by the gate to the terminal(1 block walk with roller backpack)...I kept on looking at the taxi guys grumbling there while i was waiting for the 12p jeepney to fill knowing I was never coming back there again..If they would have been reasonable so would have I....Im not afraid to spend money here but shit pisses me off.....

 

 

Although I almost always drive my car here in Bacolod, I can say that in most cases, trikes and taxis charge a "fair" price here.

 

 

The oposite is true for the Angeles City, Fields Ave, Balibago, Clark Airbase area (I lived in that area for 2 years) .... Udonthani is right, the trikes are a total rip-off. You won't get in one and take a ride across the street for less than 50 pesos! There is no trike ride less than 50 pesos!

 

The mayor of Angeles City established a "fair pricing matrix" for trikes in the area, but literally NO trike driver will follow the recommended rate.

 

50 pesos for a 50 meter trike ride is crazy to say the least!

 

 

Sure, you can "vote with your feet" and not take these rip-off trike drivers in Angeles, but what they are doing is just wrong .... and the local trike driver's union is just too powerful for anyone to stop the price gouging in that area of the PI.

____________________________________________

 

 

EDIT: The "foreigner's" had a powerfull tool at there disposal during the days when the USAF was active at Clark .... The base commander would just put Angeles City "off-limits" to all the military stationed at Clark if he felt the locals were price gouging in any way .... This hit the entire area directly in the pocketbook, and mysteriously the problem would be quickly solved.

 

Unfortunatly, the good old "Base Days" are now just a memory now!

 

.

Link to post
Share on other sites
udonthani

I can say that in most cases, trikes and taxis charge a "fair" price here.

 

I've never said anything else. The cases I've mentioned are the exception, not the rule. But some of them are so bad, they need highlighting.

 

it's basically like this - getting charged 25 or even 30 for a 20 peso good or service is kind of irritating when you know what the prices are, it happens from time to time, I know I'm being overcharged but nine times out of ten I'll just pay it without complaint.

 

I'm not going to stand there and make an issue of it for such a piffling amount. I probably wouldn't even make a joke about it when I'm handing it over.

 

when it's fifty and up, then sorry but that's too much. When it's FIVE TIMES MORE and a straight case of drivers getting together in a CONVERTED ATTEMPT to FORM A CARTEL and PRICE FIX to RIP OFF THE FOREIGNERS, like is what seemesto be the case at Moalboal, then I think you really ought to let them know that they're just taking the piss.

 

there's got to be cut off point somewhere. Take this as an example, and this has happened to me more than once, say I've been eating in the same canaderia regularly for a while, I have a similar kind of meal each time plus a drink and the bill is say 60. Then, one time, some cousin or co-helper is working as cashier and hasn't seen me before, assumes it's my first time in the joint, and sees it's a foreigner. Out of sheer mind-numbing moronicness, they decide to levy a charge of 100 instead of 60 for the hell of it.

 

now I won't accept that. If I've the right money, I'll just lay it down and piss off. They won't follow you out of there and challenge you about it. If I've only got a 100, I'll euphemise they've made a 'mistake' and on getting the right change, and yes, they will give in. I don't like the second of those two options, because it means you're having to force a sort of confrontation and run the risk of them losing face. I wouldn't want to embarrass them, or make them feel small. But even if I do, that's not really my problem. It's their problem, for trying it on in the first place.

Link to post
Share on other sites
smokey

Well i found the news paper mafia right here in cebu at E mall... i was being a cool guy like i always am and asked the newspaper guy right outside the door ... Hey how much is the philippin star and the sun star... sir the philippine star is 22p and the sun star is 18 peso .. i said ok my local vendor ... let me have both the philippin star and the sun star so i hand him a 100p note and he hands me back 50p i looked at the 50 p to make sure it was a 50p and not a 60p note and i said ... didnt you say the philipine star was 22p and the sun star was 18p and he looked at me with a blank look like maybe he though i did not know how to count and said yes the philippine star and the sun star 22p and 18p 50peso .. i guess he did not understand my english so he just walked away mumbling something about foreigners... .. so i now have my eye glued on the NEWSPAPER MAFIA ... and i think this guy was a underboss because he smiled ,,,,later this week i think we should have a sign carrying protest and invite all the media we can have a rock band and ask manny to come and lend a hand are you guys with me..?????????? If so start without me as i dont protest in the streets to many chances of getting run over by a mini bus with no brakes..

Link to post
Share on other sites

I like what udonthani has to say many times, but I'm a bit confused in this thread. One time udonthani says that when multiple trik drivers get together and conspire to fix prices it is anti-capitalis. Another time he says that charging different people different rates is wrong too.

 

I'm one to believe a vendor does have the right to try and get as much as they think they can get for their product from each individual sale. As a consumer, I have the right to reject their offering and look for another solution. As a consumer I also have the right to do things like go up to the departures section of the airport and grab a white metered taxi rather than deal with the guys at arrival looking to get more for the ride into Cebu. I also have a right to offer 100 pesos flat rate for a ride to Cebu and if the driver wont take it, move on to the next until a driver I want to ride with will take it. That is "market driven".

 

It is true that I do get bothered by being "over charged" for things I know others are able to get for less without a haggle session, but I remind myself that I am also able to drive them down in price, moving from one vendor to another until they are at the price I want.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Well i found the news paper mafia right here in cebu at E mall... i was being a cool guy like i always am and asked the newspaper guy right outside the door ... Hey how much is the philippin star and the sun star... sir the philippine star is 22p and the sun star is 18 peso .. i said ok my local vendor ... let me have both the philippin star and the sun star so i hand him a 100p note and he hands me back 50p i looked at the 50 p to make sure it was a 50p and not a 60p note and i said ... didnt you say the philipine star was 22p and the sun star was 18p and he looked at me with a blank look like maybe he though i did not know how to count and said yes the philippine star and the sun star 22p and 18p 50peso .. i guess he did not understand my english so he just walked away mumbling something about foreigners... .. so i now have my eye glued on the NEWSPAPER MAFIA ... and i think this guy was a underboss because he smiled ,,,,later this week i think we should have a sign carrying protest and invite all the media we can have a rock band and ask manny to come and lend a hand are you guys with me..?????????? If so start without me as i dont protest in the streets to many chances of getting run over by a mini bus with no brakes..

:sad_01:

Link to post
Share on other sites
Jess Bartone

Honestly whippy, I do try to ignore your whining ways, but you're so damn funny it deserves a comment. Robert and Angie gave you all the advice you need, if it upsets you so much, just go away and stay there. you're a small-time sidewalk hot dog vendor? that is funny. Is it like Cheech and Chong, where there is a special surprise in every pack? and about your repeated use of that word, begins with f and ends in uck... fire truck... did you just learn that one? I guess there are some who are impressed by cursing. blow another j, mellow out man, it's impossible for anyone to be an authority on everything.

 

stop spreading ill will, and try being nice for a change, you may just find everyone will stop ripping you for 1 peso and irritating you so much you need to fill valuable hard disc space crying and whining about it. who knows someone may even smile at you

Link to post
Share on other sites

Honestly whippy, I do try to ignore your whining ways, but you're so damn funny it deserves a comment. Robert and Angie gave you all the advice you need, if it upsets you so much, just go away and stay there. you're a small-time sidewalk hot dog vendor? that is funny. Is it like Cheech and Chong, where there is a special surprise in every pack? and about your repeated use of that word, begins with f and ends in uck... fire truck... did you just learn that one? I guess there are some who are impressed by cursing. blow another j, mellow out man, it's impossible for anyone to be an authority on everything.

 

stop spreading ill will, and try being nice for a change, you may just find everyone will stop ripping you for 1 peso and irritating you so much you need to fill valuable hard disc space crying and whining about it. who knows someone may even smile at you

 

Jesse, he's just the epitome of the "Whingeing Pom". But its ok. I kinda like the guy. He's not afraid to call a spade, a spade and he's not afraid to speak his mind. Nothin wrong with that. And on this topic i agree with him 100%. Im getting pissed off more everyday with the blatant rip offs here. It just really annoys me that so many people here think that i owe them something just because i was born in another country.

 

Jesse, would you put up with someone trying to rip you off in Australia? Im guessing no. I know i didn't. So why should we put up with it here??

Link to post
Share on other sites

Udonthani almost said:

 

"it's no less contemptible than some asshole children caroling and trying to charge three times the market rate for no discernible reason other than they think they can (bastard kids), because they think the sucker doesn't know what prices are. Of course 35 peso over 30 pesos would be of no concern to me. 150 over 30 though, which is what the assholes at Moalboal church are trying to fix, is a different issue. Seriously, do you think it's acceptable for asshole children carolers to get their heads together, rig the market, and fix prices like that? It's not 'small market capitalism' by half. It's just rank criminality."

post-5363-125900702246_thumb.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites

In a truly free market, the drivers should be allowed to get together and come up with their minimum rate to drive someone. However, they would not be allowed to physically prevent other drivers from offering lower rates if they wanted. The real problems start to arise when other laws are broken, like using violence to coerce a condition. If all of the drivers came around and said they would never take less than 150 for a ride from a foreigner, sooner than later a new driver would see the prosperity of the existing drivers and would come in to offer the service for 125. This is competition. However, if the original drivers then threatened to kill the new driver if he didnt get in line with their rates, that is when the real problems start.

 

Remember a free market is where BOTH the buyer and the seller have agreed on a price and service without any form of coercion. The government's role is supposed to be about ensuring that there is no coercion, but instead they actually become the worst of all coercion. Udonthani's real problem isnt from the poor drivers bad behavior, but in reality is due to the government's inability to do what they were hired to do to begin with.

Link to post
Share on other sites
udonthani

I accept getting charged extra sometimes quite philosphically.

 

I happily paid 100 pesos foreigner fee to visit the Twin Lakes National Park near Dumaguete last week. Plenty of other countries charge the foreigners extra to visit National Parks, as long as it's a reasonable amount, and 100 pesos isn't too bad, then I have no complaint. This isn't something by the way that you come across all that often in the Philippines anyway. Oftentimes, foreigners and locals pay the same modest fees when visiting waterfalls etc.

 

even overcharging by trike drivers I can accept to an extent. Just a couple of days ago we found out that the 'local' multi cab trike fare from Sugar beach to Sipalay city, a good 20 minute drive, is 20 pesos. That's what a local worker in one of the resorts on 180 pesos a day wages pays to get to get to the city. We couldn't get that. The best we could get was 40 each, and the drivers just wouldn't accept any less in the tourist area. Also, being white or 'foreign' has nothing to do with it. The drivers just wouldn't accept any less in the tourist area. It would have been the same for Filipinos from Manila. They would have paid double too.

 

like I said, you've got to draw the line somewhere and make a distinction between a little padding and outright thievery. When it's the latter you've got to make a stand even if it involves making the thieving bastards feel uncomfortable.

Link to post
Share on other sites
like I said, you've got to draw the line somewhere and make a distinction between a little padding and outright thievery.

 

I dont think a seller of a product/service asking what the buyer considers to be an outrageous price can be called "thievery". Unless they are actually cheating you by not living up to anagreed service/price, they are only doing their end as a seller. You have the right to reject their service and keep looking for another provider of the product/service. You have no "right" to have their product/service and can just go without it. You could walk if need be, or not go to that area because you know the rates are higher than you are willing to pay. Your actions in this respect help to define the market.

Link to post
Share on other sites
udonthani

I dont think a seller of a product/service asking what the buyer considers to be an outrageous price can be called "thievery". Unless they are actually cheating you by not living up to anagreed service/price, they are only doing their end as a seller. You have the right to reject their service and keep looking for another provider of the product/service. You have no "right" to have their product/service and can just go without it. You could walk if need be, or not go to that area because you know the rates are higher than you are willing to pay. Your actions in this respect help to define the market.

 

I did elementary economics at school too, but they never said anything about the guy ahead of you in the queue paying 250 for a bunch of flowers, but when it comes to your turn, you pay 550 just because it is perceived because of the color of your skin that you can afford to pay the difference. By any objective standard that is just sharp practice.

 

sure, you can have two stores, one in a middle class area, and one in a working class one, and you might expect the prices to be slightly different. But one guy in the queue paying more just because he's wearing shoes, while the other guy pays less because he's wearing slippers, is just sick.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I did elementary economics at school too, but they never said anything about the guy ahead of you in the queue paying 250 for a bunch of flowers, but when it comes to your turn, you pay 550 just because it is perceived because of the color of your skin that you can afford to pay the difference. By any objective standard that is just sharp practice.

 

sure, you can have two stores, one in a middle class area, and one in a working class one, and you might expect the prices to be slightly different. But one guy in the queue paying more just because he's wearing shoes, while the other guy pays less because he's wearing slippers, is just sick.

 

Seems like your argument is based on the belief that the exchange in that hamburger market was "unfair." Puke. Where did fairness ever factor into pricing in a free market? Are you arguing for price controls? They've never worked, nor have cartels. Perhaps your elementary economics class was like the one pictured below:

post-5363-125903437745_thumb.jpg

Edited by Slick Willie
Link to post
Share on other sites
The Mason

Besides, every city that has tourist around has tourist tax, and definately here in the USA too. We just voted as a city to continue the 1% (i think it is) "tourist tax" which is applied to every hotel/motel bill in the city limits...It was used to build the AT&T center for the Spurs to play in, It is being used to extend the great RiverWalk another couple miles in each direction....So most businesses figure that if the city can legally charge a tourist tax, why can't they up their prices too...That's why I havn't been downtown since I moved back to this City...Cuz it is for tourists...and I ain't gonna pay the tourist price. Point being, nobody likes it, but it is not considered stealing, it is considered good economics.

 

The key difference between what you describe and what happens in the Philippines is that the tax is applied by the govt, not the merchant, and it applies to everyone with no exceptions. They don't charge the extra 1% to blacks, Mexicans, and Asians and a lower price to white people.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Guidelines. We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue..