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There were two kinds of taxi : metered taxi and regular taxi.
In metered taxi there is no bad surprise as the passenger fare is proportional to distance.
If the taxi is going through highways, the passenger has to pay the toll
(10 to 30 Baht). In regular taxi, price had to be negotiated first. Now all the
new taxis are metered taxis.
In 1998 police claimed they were cracking down
on taxi drivers who jiggered their meters to cheat riders. There are 20,000 Bangkok
taxis idle in the car barn every day -- out of a total of 53,000. Drivers say a
10-hour shift often earns just 100 baht. Four hours without a customer is common.
A large percentage of drivers are behind in their taxi-rent payments.
In year 2010, taxi company mainly employs men,
mostly from the northeastern province of Roi Et.
Some drivers rent to taxi company a new cab for around 580 baht
per one 12-hour shift and 450 baht for an older car (year 2010 price).
After three years, a cab is considered as old because it has been driven every day. Most drivers
prefer new cars because it is easier to get passengers.
Most Bangkok taxi drivers are facing tough times financially.
In the face of competition from other forms of public transport and the increasing number of cabs,
their living standards are declining.
Taxi cars brand is often Toyota Corolla.
Taxi colors can be yellow, pink or green color. Taxi color depends on the firm that owns
the taxis. Often taxi drivers are nice. Many drivers are coming from
"ISAN" area (อีสาน - northeastern part of Thailand).
In September 2010 a Bangkok taxi driver
became famous. Duan Sosarn returned a purse left in his cab that contained USD 6500
and 26,000 baht in cash. National Police Chief gave him a shield of honour during
National Police Day.
In year 2010 there were 90,000 taxis in Bangkok. 69,000 registered with
companies and 21,000 privately owned. In twelve years, the number of taxis have increased by 37,000!
In year 2015 there were 120,000 taxis in Bangkok.
The daily rent was around 900 baht a day. After 4 years it is paid. Taxis have 9 years life (up to 600 000 km).
Drivers renting a cab have to return it every day.
The flag fall cost of 35 baht is the same since year 1992. It was changed in year 2008
to reduce the length of free travel from two kilometres to one kilometre. Each kilometer is
then 10 baht. Phoning a taxi adds 20 baht to the fare.
Some drivers prefer to invest in a car instead of renting
a taxi up to 1500 baht a day from a taxi company. It is better to have recurrent customers.