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Don’t let them take you for a ride!


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A taxi survival guide. It is not mine but was taken from a local blog that I follow. It is very readable and is full of relevant advise.

 

http://www.marketman...-you-for-a-ride

 

I have received a third email in less than a year that recounts situations where readers have been literally “taken for a ride” by taxi drivers… Often, as tourists, whether local or foreign, we are extremely vulnerable when trying to move around an unfamiliar city, and taxi drivers can take advantage of you. You are not inclined to “fight back” or assert your rights as it appears riskier than its worth to do so. The most recent email was of a tourist’s experience in Cebu, and it really pisses me off no end, hence this post.

First, let me recount my own experience in Cebu, so it sets the tone for the post. A couple of years ago, arriving from Bohol aboard a fast ferry, I tried to hail the first cab in line at the pier. I told the driver I was headed to an address near the Capitol building, and he immediately quoted me a price of PHP400, roughly 4x the metered rate at that time. I calmly told him I wanted the metered rate and he refused. I told him he should re-think his answer or suffer the consequences and he still refused to budge. So I went in front of the cab, took down his license plate number and name of operator, I got his name from his Taxi ID on the dashboard and told him I was going to file a complaint with the LTO in Cebu. And send a copy to the Mayor’s office. I also called a port cop over to explain what happened and took his name as a witness. At that point, noting the high likelihood that I could indeed be a pain in his rear, the cab driver acquiesced and said he would take me where I wanted. I refused. Told him I had given him a second chance, and now I wouldn’t get into his cab for my own safety and security. I took the second cab in line and he didn’t even try to scam me in any way. I asked my secretary at the office to call the LTO, get the right information, and I sent in a letter of complaint, cc:ed to the Mayor’s office and local Department of Tourism representative. At the time, Cebu was trying hard to improve cab services and for a couple of years after there were fewer incidents such as this taking place. I have also repeatedly experienced cab drivers at malls refusing a fare, saying it was too near or too far, etc. Again, take their plate number and write in. If a cab driver or cab company receives enough complaints at the LTO, their license can be suspended or lost altogether. They will not be allowed to drive for a cab operator again.

WHAT ARE YOUR RIGHTS?

Cab licenses are given out by the government. They are a privilege to operate the cab in the designated territory. They have rules. The privilege CAN be withdrawn. To my knowledge, unless grossly mistaken, a cab driver CANNOT refuse a fare because they feel like it. Because the destination is too close. Because it is too far within the territory it is meant to cover (say city limits). They cannot pick and choose clients, unless they themselves feel at risk of harm’s way, for example, when a potential client is clearly drunk and maybe violent. Cab drivers CANNOT negotiate fares, and must use their meters. That is why they have a metered cab license. Cab drivers CANNOT add on premiums for late night driving, gas, aircon, baggage, etc. unless STATED explicitly by the LTO or local governing agency. Cab drivers CANNOT demand a tip or a different tariff.

Despite what I write above, many consumers either don’t know this, don’t care, can’t be bothered and so perpetuate a situation where they are being taken advantage of, without even bothering to speak up. It’s like public transportation rape. You suffer in silence. So we all deserve bad service if we don’t speak up. It is, to some degree, our own fault. So, SPEAK UP FOLKS!

How to complain in Cebu?

I have gathered a couple of numbers for those of you who have had bad experiences with cabs in Cebu. Write a simple letter outlining the complaint, the name of the driver if you have it, the cab company and the plate number and send it to the LTO in Cebu, call them first at 032.256.3766 to get address details or fax number. Follow up a few times to let them know you won’t let it pass. Copy the letter to the cab company as well. If you can’t do it for yourself, think of the dozens of folks you might help in the future as a result of a simple, factual and objective complaint. The LTO is in charge of all WHITE cabs in Cebu. If you are fooled by either a yellow airport cab, tourist bus, rent-a-car service, then direct your complaint to the Department of Tourism office in Cebu, at 032.254.2811.

NEVER get into a cab you have confronted and informed that you will file a complaint against them. BUT DO FILE the complaint instead of just posturing that you will do so. That we even have to think about this is pathetic third world stuff, or is it? I have had bad cab drivers in New York, Morocco, Seattle, Jakarta, etc. as well. I am particularly galled by cab drivers who are in line at a mall and then refuse to take you to your desired destination. Shouldn’t the mall also step in and ban such capricious behavior? But again, it boils down to US, and if you don’t speak up, it won’t get better. Don’t even ask me about the three folks who cut in line ahead of us in broad daylight at the recent S&R mega sale in Cebu, resulting in our losing the two carts we had reserved from 430am in the morning. Did the store do anything about the line cutters? No. Did the three folks get embarrassed when I raised a stink and directly pointed at them for store security? No. Did the rest of the line do anything? They clapped and cheered loudly when I lost it, but that’s about it. Pinoys love a fight, but they son’t want to be in the fight. :) Horrible. A national shame. We encourage or at least don’t discourage line cutters and we don’t point out folks who pick and choose when it is their JOB to serve the public ridership at large. We want tourists (that don’t come for sex, yeah right, I loved that dumb pride filled but totally misdirected brouhaha) but we can’t even ensure decent, safe, fair cab service… Oh, and don’t mention tourist buses taken over by terrorists.

Note: I suspect the errant cab drivers are still few and far between, maybe as little as less than 5-10% of all the cabs around. So it’s like bad apples, they spoil the rest of the bushel. And I only refer to the few evil ones, not the majority who I suspect are honest, upright, fair citizens. And I do note that every once in a while cab drivers are hailed for their honesty and return of critical documents and money left in their vehicles… kudos to them indeed.

Edited by Norseman
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A taxi survival guide. It is not mine but was taken from a local blog that I follow. It is very readable and is full of relevant advise.   http://www.marketman...-you-for-a-ride  

I am heading for the PI's again to visit the wife's family. This experience will be marred by having to deal with taxi drivers near tourist areas. As a group they are a PIA, probably responsible for r

never been thru this.............

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  • 2 weeks later...

I just watched this as well after seeing it mentioned on here.

 

Seems like it would all have gone away if he had some money behind him.

 

Definitely a shitty situation.

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Whenever I take a cab, I open the door, tell the driver where I want to go I ask how much while looking to see if he has a meter box. Since I pretty much go to my normal spots, if i am quoted something out of the Twilight Zone I say thanks and wait for another. If I get a honest rate, I will step in and if the driver does a good job I make it a point to give a very nice tip. My wife does not like that but thats what I do and I have found that a few times I had a driver I rode with before and I am remembered. As for these crook try to get their information and report them. This is their main source of income and they do not want to lose it. So let them know if you want to keep your cab then be a honest driver.

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must say my 5 years of taking taxis it happens very rare (once every 12months) and when it does i just get another cab...

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well being an ex cabbie for 15 years cab drivers hate being tarnished with the same brush ,also tell other cab drivers your complaint and even better give another driver that licence number .because more often than not punishment will sometimes happen within if you know what i mean .

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LastManStanding

HAHAHAHHAA

 

What a joke, you do realize that they won't do anything to the taxi driver. The LTFRB is the one responsible for the Taxi's and they are just as corrupt. That bullshit about reporting them to the LTFRB is a joke. Its just like everything else you see in RP, from the signs about joking about bombs in the airport to smoke tests. Its all nonsense. Seriously you think that all these cars out on the road passed a smoke test?

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smokey

HAHAHAHHAA

 

What a joke, you do realize that they won't do anything to the taxi driver. The LTFRB is the one responsible for the Taxi's and they are just as corrupt. That bullshit about reporting them to the LTFRB is a joke. Its just like everything else you see in RP, from the signs about joking about bombs in the airport to smoke tests. Its all nonsense. Seriously you think that all these cars out on the road passed a smoke test?

 

 

 

 

i remember the trucks in the us with the ... call 1800 eat shit.. i agree they could care less...

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I remember riding a taxi in Cebu, having only a 500 or 1000 bill... They took me for a ride that was atleast 80 pesos... couldn't give me back any change, so they gave me back my bill, went looking for som1 who could change, and he dissapeared. This would NEVER happen in Europe, the taxi driver would be following me everywhere here even for less than 10 euro.

Edited by Zamora
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In a situation where you can not pay due to having to big notes, have anyone tried using pasaload?

Would it be accepted?

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scoobie007

Been here nearly a year and have had no problems. Before taking a ride which maybe a fair way off some may ask to go off the meter giving a verbal quote. Sometimes ive accepted this simply due to the taxi being in good nick,good aircon etc.....some ive just got in then hopped out of particularly if it smells as if the driver has just farted !! If I find myself with only a large note such as a 1000 then if theres a petrol station on the way,which there normally is, i just buy water as the station will always have change.

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I remember riding a taxi in Cebu, having only a 500 or 1000 bill... They took me for a ride that was atleast 80 pesos... couldn't give me back any change, so they gave me back my bill, went looking for som1 who could change, and he dissapeared. This would NEVER happen in Europe, the taxi driver would be following me everywhere here even for less than 10 euro.

 

I had that happen too.. fare is 120 I only have 2 100 he just asked if i had smaller and just gave back me the 100, i said wait i get change.. he just drove off

Edited by frenzy3
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musicman666

sometimes you get the minor scam where the meter has been running before you get in... worth watching out for.

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  • 5 months later...

Never been through that. I demand a meter here in Cebu and if they argue I tell them CITOM has a date with you and I got your ID and License and company name. They turn it on and stop being stupid. Also if they drive on oncoming traffic or things like that I just say CITOM again. Never dealt with CITOM and never plan to.

 

Most taxi drivers in Cebu are nice and friendly. They will give you your change back and help you get to a place. Although came across some that ran up a meter to 250 trying to find a location when he said he knew where it was and dropped me off in AS Fortuna. I wouldn't pay the bill cause I was now lost. He tried arguing at Guiseppe's restaurant but I said he's BOOANG and told him to restart and bring me to ayala instead.

 

He restarted it.

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udonthani

the solitary bad experience I have had with a Cebu city taxi driver was also at the port. It was also the first time I ever arrived in Cebu so I formed a bad impression of Cebu city taxi drivers in general for quite a while, an attitude I gradually realised was wrong because now years later I no longer have a bad impression of Cebu city taxi drivers.

 

you could probably get away with using pasaload to pay the fare with a driver if you included a tip but it would just make more sense to ensure you have a stock of small bills anyway which you should do in the Philippines in the first place because sometimes they really do not have the required change, and they're not kidding. You could probably get away with paying a fare of much higher value than the meter in US dollars as well in many cases too but probably not in any other foreign currency.

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