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Taxis Reaping Double Fares from Airport – WTF!?

By InnerNorthn00b - 14 August 2011 34

I flew into Canberra the other day and was asked at the taxi rank if I was happy to take a cab with another person in the queue as we were both heading in roughly the same direction. After we both got in, and after we arrived at the other passenger’s destination, the cab stopped and charged the passenger $12. I then drove on for another 0.5-1km to my destination and the cab charged me $18, because rather than resetting the meter, he kept it running after the initial fare was paid.

So basically, the cab company collected $30 for a trip that would usually cost $20, and I effectively paid a cab $18 to drive less than a km. I asked the driver why the meter wasn’t reset after the first passenger got out and he said that it was not because we were given the off-peak rate as we agreed to carpool together in the cab.

I’m just wondering if this is common and whether it is necessarily legal or regulated against?

It just seems rather dodgy to me.

Thoughts?

What’s Your opinion?


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34 Responses to
Taxis Reaping Double Fares from Airport – WTF!?
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zllauh 8:46 pm 27 Sep 15

are there any places from where you book a cab and it would actually show up :/

scorpio63 11:49 pm 17 Aug 11

Henry the only problem with the pre-chat between passengers sharing a cab is that some people do not honour their agreement to pay half when the time arrives for departing the cab at their destination.

I caught a cab once with another person when younger and at the time a five or ten dollar note was offered instead of a 50/50 share (Sydney by memory) a suburb apart. I was left with the majority of the fare.

Skyring 10:43 pm 17 Aug 11

Mozzie said :

Now I just say nothing until we are both seated in the taxi.

This is your right, and I salute you for sticking to your guns.

Mozzie 9:57 pm 17 Aug 11

I-filed said :

The huge benefit for the sharing system is that it means people don’t wait ages for a taxi at the airport, or any other taxi rank. It’s a great scheme. Punters who don’t wish to share are under no obligation. In my experience the driver ALWAYS asks whether it’s OK to share. You’d need a pretty good reason to say no!

I don’t like it. I find it akward and uncomfortable packed into a taxi with a couple of strangers.

Several times they have asked me where I am going and shoved several people in the cab. Like Alien Fiend said I always end up at the end of the journey. Sometimes I have ended up paying more and taking longer than I would have. Screw that. I took to not telling them.

But then the taxi driver would ask, and as soon as I told them, they would find people and shove them in the taxi.

Now I just say nothing until we are both seated in the taxi.

rosscoact 4:12 pm 15 Aug 11

I always refuse because the person is never on the way therefore I lose the time and convenience of using a taxi. If I wanted to share I’d use a bus.

Devil_n_Disquiz 3:40 pm 15 Aug 11

Aenveigh said :

However, the constant airport tolls are getting grating – there’s a new $1.20 toll leaving the airport (in addition to the existing $2) which isn’t signed that I’ve seen, isn’t on the taxi company or airport websites, but that all the drivers seem to know about… I’m guessing it’s legit given I’ve been charged it 3 times in a row.

from my blog

Aerial has now put on 4 commissionaires at the Canberra Airport. To pay for this service Aerial is going to charge each taxi (Silver excluded) $93.40 per month. This is based on their formula of each taxi picking up from the airport 2.78 times a day at $1.20 per pickup. This $1.20 is charged to the passenger.
This equates to $93.40 per 28 day cycle for each cab in the fleet (of which I have been told amounts to 287) netting Aerial a whopping $350714 per year. Based on 287 cabs and $93.40 per month equals $1222.00 a year per cab.

caf 2:58 pm 15 Aug 11

Devil_n_Disquiz said :

Well..given that logic I should be ok to do a bit of collective bargaining next time I get on a Qantas flight ?? I mean, we are all going to the same place aren’t we ??

The only reason it’s not possible on a Qantas flight is that Qantas charges by the seat, rather than by the journey.

I’m sure if you found a planeload of passengers wanting to go to the same destination, and organised to charter a flight and split it between you, then no-one would try and stop you – regardless of whether or not you were all “work colleagues”!

Thoroughly Smashed 2:45 pm 15 Aug 11

Devil_n_Disquiz said :

caf said :

Devil_n_Disquiz said :

You missed the point John. We are talking about deliberate deception by passengers to avoid paying a multi-hire, which is what I was referring to. Which I have actioned, and which has involved the police. Its fare evasion and as such you wouldn’t have a leg to stand on.

What rubbish. What business of yours is it whether the passengers are work colleagues or just friends who first met 5 minutes ago in the taxi queue? There is nothing wrong with a bit of collective bargaining.

Well..given that logic I should be ok to do a bit of collective bargaining next time I get on a Qantas flight ?? I mean, we are all going to the same place aren’t we ??

You’ll find one of these things in legislation, and not the other.

Devil_n_Disquiz 2:37 pm 15 Aug 11

caf said :

Devil_n_Disquiz said :

You missed the point John. We are talking about deliberate deception by passengers to avoid paying a multi-hire, which is what I was referring to. Which I have actioned, and which has involved the police. Its fare evasion and as such you wouldn’t have a leg to stand on.

What rubbish. What business of yours is it whether the passengers are work colleagues or just friends who first met 5 minutes ago in the taxi queue? There is nothing wrong with a bit of collective bargaining.

Well..given that logic I should be ok to do a bit of collective bargaining next time I get on a Qantas flight ?? I mean, we are all going to the same place aren’t we ??

caf 2:09 pm 15 Aug 11

Devil_n_Disquiz said :

You missed the point John. We are talking about deliberate deception by passengers to avoid paying a multi-hire, which is what I was referring to. Which I have actioned, and which has involved the police. Its fare evasion and as such you wouldn’t have a leg to stand on.

What rubbish. What business of yours is it whether the passengers are work colleagues or just friends who first met 5 minutes ago in the taxi queue? There is nothing wrong with a bit of collective bargaining.

Skyring 9:50 am 15 Aug 11

Alien Fiend said :

And why do taxi drivers sit there and look at you to wait for you to say where you are going before they leave the taxi rank? Mate, anywhere in the world I can go is out of here!

Yeees, but you know where you’re going and the taxi driver doesn’t. He’s got to work out the best way of getting to a random destination and the earlier he gets the information, the better.

For example, there are several good ways of getting to Belconnen Town Centre:
1. Along Parkes Way to Gridloch Interchange, then up the GDE or Bindubi to Belconnen Way, turn into Benjamin. Quickest but longest, and fares are calculated on distance, not time.
2. Along Parkes Way to Clunies Ross, swap over to Belconnen Way to Benjamin. Good mix of speed and distance. A chance of getting caught at a few more traffic lights. A slightly shorter alternative is to go through Civic, maybe along Marcus Clarke, but you’re now talking serious traffic lights and delay. Each red light is roughly another minute and another dollar on top of the distance fare.
3. Turn right at the first lights, go up the back way along Fairbairn Avenue past the gun gates of Duntroon, the War Memorial, turn left at Wakefield past the ABC and it’s a straight shot along Macarthur to Belconnen Way. This is the absolute shortest route, but there’s a lot of 60 km/h zone, beginning at Duntroon and it’s well sprinkled with traffic lights. Avoid during rush hour!

The first major decision point comes up pretty quickly, and there’s usually some fiddly driving with merging and dealing with random airport construction vehicles and lost souls, plus the chance of cutting across three lanes to make the turn at the lights, so the driver has to be doing some serious thinking, especially if the destination isn’t at the town centre, but at (say) Bruce or Spence.

And if the destination is Queanbeyan, the first decision point comes up even sooner.

The driver needs to know the destination so he can start making decisions aimed at saving you time and money.

It is a huge help if you indicate your preferred route. You likely know the exact best way to your home address because you’ve tried all the alternatives.

At the airport, if the destination isn’t offered, I’ll start driving because I’ve got a few seconds along the lower U of the pick-up road and I can ask where we’re going. You would be amazed at the number of people who say nothing, resuming interrupted conversations with travelling companions or fiddling with their mobile. They know where they want to go, because their home address is on their drivers licence, or the hotel address is on the travel documents, and somehow they assume that this information is already known to the poor cabbie in a non-verbal fashion.

However, in fairness, there are cabbies who put the meter on while you load up the boot, then ask for the destination so that they can type it into their GPS. At this point, you may consider taking a different cab.

trevar 8:58 am 15 Aug 11

I really don’t get why you’d bother questioning the legality or morality of these practices. Anything that’s written down, law or otherwise, is open to circumvention unless you’re living under a totalitarian regime. If you don’t like the system, learn it inside out, and then find a way to turn it to your own advantage; in the west, we call this entrepreneurship.

The obvious way to do that in this instance has already been suggested, but I’m sure there are others. I haven’t bothered with them because usually when I fly somewhere the only reason I’m flying is because it’s a quick trip, and if the trip is less than five days the car parking is cheaper than the taxi…

Aenveigh 8:41 am 15 Aug 11

The multi-hire system here is a bit strange and not well explained at the airport (where I assume most such trips originate). The flat fare system mentioned earlier would work well, and indeed some drivers offer this anyway.

However, the constant airport tolls are getting grating – there’s a new $1.20 toll leaving the airport (in addition to the existing $2) which isn’t signed that I’ve seen, isn’t on the taxi company or airport websites, but that all the drivers seem to know about… I’m guessing it’s legit given I’ve been charged it 3 times in a row.

JC 7:32 am 15 Aug 11

Mr Gillespie said :

How do cabbies get away with charging so much? What are the costs that justify such a high rate per km of travel??? And travel to and from the airport is even worse! And how dare they make it legal for them to double-dip like this!!! GREEDY PIGS!!!!!

I assume you are talking in general and not specifically about double hire. If so it’s like everything else about life in modern Australia. That is housing, utilities and food are bloody expensive, needing high rates of pay to allow people to live, which means costs need to go up to cover these costs. With taxi’s in particular the licences are also very expensive and we the passenger needs to pay.

If your talking about double hire rates, then the bottom line is both passengers should have paid less then they would have otherwise paid, so they are hardly being ripped off. They are getting the advantage of a lower rate with less waiting time and yes the driver makes a bit more. Also as others have pointed out it is optional. If your the first passenger in the cab you can refuse a 2nd passenger getting in, and if your in the line and someone calls for a double booking your under no obligation to take up the offer.

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