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Beijing Taxi Fares Among the Cheapest in the World

Posted: 09/24/2014 3:25 pm

beijing taxi gridlock traffic jamBeijing, once famous for its garlic-smelling cabs, has the cheapest taxi fares in the world among major international metropolitan cities, according to Focus, a German publication. Beijing taxis only charge 3.87 Euros (RMB 29.8, around $4.97) for a 10 kilometre trip.

At the other end is Tokyo, where taking a cab is downright prohibitive. A 10 kilometre ride in the world’s largest city is 25.39 Euros (RMB 200.1, approximately $32.64), 6.7 times more than Beijing.

The taxi services of other world cities fall in between. A ten kilometer taxi trip in London costs 22.5 Euros (around $28.93); in New York City, it costs the equivalent of 13.98 Euros (approximately $17.97); and in Paris, such a trip will set you back 12.20 Euros (about $15.68).

Wang Limei, secretary of the Chinese National Raod Transportation association, explained that these European and American cities have higher taxi fares because “foreigners have higher salaries”.

Traffic expert Zhang Haitao said Beijing fares couldn’t ever get as high as those overseas:

From downtown Washington to the airport, it will cost about $100. This is too expensive for locals, and removes the effectiveness of (the taxi) by its price.

Caijing explained that taxis in these other countries are used as an emergency measure, and not regularly used for commuting like in Beijing. Residents of the USA and Europe also take fewer taxis because they have a convenient and effective public transportation system. (The fact that many Europeans and North Americans also own cars wasn’t mentioned).

Caijing went on to say each of these world-class cities have subway stations within a 100 to 200 meter walk, and that it is even convenient to take luggage on the subway .

At the end of it all, you get what you pay for. You get cheap fares in Beijing, only to sit in the worst traffic in the country.


Photo: roll.msn


Foreigner Charged RMB 2,700 for a Ride in a Fake Taxi in Beijing

Posted: 06/22/2014 8:00 am

fake taxiA foreigner new to China was charged RMB 2,700 ($434 US) for a taxi ride from Beijing International Airport to Tanggu, Tianjin, reports the Beijing Evening Report.

A US citizen identified only as “Nick” revealed in an interview that he thinks he has been taken advantage of by a “black cab“, a common local term for an unlicensed taxi.

Described as a “laowai” by China Daily, Nick said this was his first time in China, and that he doesn’t speak Chinese. As there was no one to pick him up at the Beijing airport, Nick decided that he would make the trip to Tanggu by himself.

READ: Dongguan Taxi Driver Takes to Weibo To
Teach You How to Spot a Fake Taxi

After getting off the plane and into the airport terminal, Nick was approached by a man who offered to give him a ride. This man spoke English, and was able to gain Nick’s trust. As Nick was doubtful that other taxi drivers would be able to speak English, Nick enlisted the help of this man and gave him the address.

Upon entering the vehicle, Nick thought that the car was an authentic taxi except for not having a meter. Nick can’t remember the brand of the taxi, but it may have been sporting a Dazhong license.

READ: Taxi Driver Violently Attacked By Foreigner in Shanghai 

Upon arriving, however, Nick realized the car wasn’t a real taxi, but paid the fare all the same without bartering. He also received a bill marked as being from the Beijing Shouqi Joint Limited Taxi Company, but looks to be a fake.

A RMB 400 tip was included in the RMB 2,700 fare.

The distance between Beijing International Airport and Tanggu, Tianjin is less than 200 km. If taken in a regulation taxi, the trip should cost no more than RMB 1000 ($161 US).


Photo: Hebei News


Guangzhou looking at raising taxi fares

Posted: 05/10/2011 2:37 pm

Guangzhou authorities are toying with the idea of increasing taxi fares in the city. Right now, when you get into a taxi, the meter starts at RMB 7 for the first 2.3 kilometres. After that, it is 1 kuai for every kilometre thereafter, plus an RMB 2 fuel surchage once the final fare is known. This actually makes Guangzhou taxis among the cheapest in big, modern Chinese cities: the rate starts at RMB 10 in Beijing and RMB 12 in Shanghai for the first three kilometres, and each city charges 2 kuai per kilometre fee after that. It gets worse though… Beijing moves to an RMB 11 starting fee after 11pm, while Shanghai moves to RMB 16 at night. And authorities there are thinking of raising it further.

Shenzhen’s taxi fares also start at RMB 10, but is subject to a three kuai fuel surcharge – the highest in China. Perhaps somebody at the Guangzhou Bureau of Commodity Prices (yes, they are the ones that set taxi fares) noticed this pricing chasm. They are considering setting the initial fare at RMB 10, which is a steep 30% increase on current prices. However, the 2 kuai surcharge would be abolished. Even though that would make Guangzhou’s fares competitive on a national level, people, understandably, still don’t like coughing up the extra fen:

The result of a March survey by the Guangzhou Public Opinion Research Center revealed recently that 57.9 percent of the surveyors consider this price unreasonable and 57.1 percent will reduce use of taxis if the starting price increases.

In the survey, 40 percent of the citizens “accept” the price of the taxi fee, 7.8 percent lower than that in 2008. 48.5 percent of the citizens “reluctantly accept” and another 11.5 percent say they can’t afford it.

The Guangzhou Bureau of Commodity Price said that they will hold a hearing before they increase the starting price of taxi. The adjustment will be in accordance to the prices of LPG gas. Some drivers worry that the hike will affect their business, “passengers may not accept the price psychologically even though the price is increased only 1 Yuan. The metro and bus in the city is more and more convenient.”

The bottom line: with inflation surging in China, it just isn’t as cheap to live here as it once was.

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