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Taxi, UBER, etc. around the world

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Taxi, UBER, etc. around the world

Postby MrMan » April 30th, 2017, 3:31 am

Some countries have cheap taxis.

I don't know if I've ever ridden in an actual taxi in the US. I hear the prices are expensive. I've called and asked for the prices many years ago. I've never lived in NYC. Most places I've lived, you kind of had to have a car to get around, except for college, where I could ride city buses, but had a car and didn't have to on the rare occasions I needed a car.

When I lived in Korea, over 20 years ago, taxis were reasonably cheap. Taxi drivers, strangely, did want to turn around the block and go the other way in Seoul. They'd rather go without passengers. It made no sense at all. A few of them would try to pick up other passengers and collect the money with you in the car in Seoul. I didn't see that in Taejon. Are taxis in South Korea still cheap?

In China, in a large city by world cities, but second tier by Chinese standards, I took a taxi with a Chinese guy who paid for it with funds from a potential employer. I think it was five bucks for a mile or two to the shopping center. The taxi had a dirty floor and smelled dirty, like it was full of dust.

I've ridden in a taxi in Malaysia, too in the past year. I'd go for about 45 minutes on a highway from the KL airport to the hotel for about $25 or so in US. Trains were cheaper for one person, but a taxi van is best for a family. The taxis were more expensive than somewhere like Jakarta, but not too expensive.

In Jakarta, taxis are cheap. I took one for about two and a half miles for about $1.95. UBERs are cheaper, about half that. There is also Go-Jek, which started with motorcycle taxis and now does all kinds of delivery of goods and services. And there is GRAB, an UBER competitor. I tipped the UBER drivers because I felt so bad paying so little.

I took an UBER in the LA area for $8, I think, for about 5 miles. I needed the transportation, but I was upset by the fact that I had to use a credit card, but then I couldn't take it off the system. So when I went to a country in Asia that would allow you to pay cash for an UBER, it puts it on my US credit card unless I set it for cash every time. The default is a credit card. I've had to make payments to the US for UBER trips overseas instead of just paying cash, and I'd have to delete my UBER profile and restart a new account to change it. I may do it, but I just never get around to it. I usually use my wife's phone now.

But I do like UBER, GRAB, etc. In the old days, when I lived in Jakarta, if there weren't any taxis or buses around, I'd have to walk somewhere to find one. Now, you can be just about anywhere, at least in the city, and they can find out. Out of town I had an UBER who couldn't find us. Before UBER XL, an UBER refused to take a group of six or seven in a van that fit six or seven. Then they added a feature to pay a fraction of the cost more to take more than four, which took care of my situation nicely.

Where are taxis expensive? Where are they cheap? Where is it worth it to buy a car? Where is it not worth it?
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Re: Taxi, UBER, etc. around the world

Postby drealm » April 30th, 2017, 3:42 am

Funny story, I took a taxi back from an airport in the USA. It was my first time taking one. They installed a fancy touch screen in the back to pay. After paying, a tips screen comes up. I had no idea what a good tip is so I asked the driver. He says "put whatever you want". So I put $1. A moment later I'm grabbing my bags and he says "WHAT, did you seriously tip me only $1?"..
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Re: Taxi, UBER, etc. around the world

Postby wingfeather » April 30th, 2017, 5:23 am

The last time I had to use a taxi was in Orlando, Florida USA. $45 from the airport to the downtown (about 12 miles). Total ripoff!!! I have managed to AVOID taxis ever since!
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Re: Taxi, UBER, etc. around the world

Postby droid » April 30th, 2017, 6:13 am

^Taxis are untouchable in America. The only thing that will fix it will be self-driving taxis, if that ever gets to pass.
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Re: Taxi, UBER, etc. around the world

Postby onethousandknives » April 30th, 2017, 6:35 am

No real taxi experience in USA. My mom bought a ride for my sister once in approx 2004, and it was $10 for 1.5 miles, calling the taxi up. Looking up the price for a half hour airport ride here with an official taxi, it's apparently $71 for a 30 mile ride.

Taiwan for taxis, it was reasonable. Half hour airport ride, was about 30 miles from Taoyun to Songshan District, was $30, or 1000NTD. Bus fare was only $5, though, but I didn't wanna screw around with a bus after spending 20+ hours flying for my first time out of the country and being super sleep deprived. For shorter trips around the city, not really too bad. Generally all I "needed" them there for was to find my airbnb place or have them take me and my luggage to a station. I think starting rate was 70NTD, for I don't know how much. But those little trips of like a kilometer or so from whatever station to the side street, etc, was like 100 or 85 NT or something, so $3? Taxi drivers there were curteous, no tipping, and one actually cut $5-6 (150 or 200NTD or so) off my bill on the way to the airport, which was really surprising and nice. Taxis were clean, modern, had good smooth suspension, had a lot of power (my driver was going like 120km/h on the highway) and were pretty modern. Also cool feeling was the black visor to hide your face on the windows. Made me feel pretty VIP like, haha.

Vietnam, I took taxis a lot more. The green Vinasun ones. I think it started at 10K? Don't remember exact rates, but I don't think I paid over 100K ($5) per ride of 15-20 minutes or so? Taxis were in rougher shape overall, not nearly as classy and VIP elegant feeling as Taiwan. Also most were manual transmission, which must suck for them driving in Hanoi traffic. Most didn't have ultra cool and cranked up AC like in Taiwan. Lots had no seatbelts, as seatbelts are for pussies in Vietnam. Most were Toyota Vios, iirc. Took a few private taxis and cars, too. Ever aside from Uber in Vietnam, that's a giant business that seemingly, anyone that has a car who isn't ultra rich, also uses it as a taxi sometimes. In one place, I paid 300-400K, or about $15-20 for a private car that took us 3-4 places in the town, but also waited around and picked us up for 2-3 hours or so. Another time we rented a van for my girlfriend's whole family (I didn't pay anything for this, nor did they ask me to) and it was 1 million VND ($40) for filling the whole van with people (5-6 people) and my luggage, and about 1.5-2 hours of driving total and about 60 miles to Hanoi from her hometown? A better option for a lot of trips was the "VIP Bus" which was usually a Mercedes Sprinter van or similar, but with really nice leather seats, etc, and not crowded up. I think those were something like 300K ($15?) per person for a big trip like from Hanoi to her hometown, but comfy. No seatbelts on those usually, too.
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Re: Taxi, UBER, etc. around the world

Postby droid » April 30th, 2017, 8:14 am

^That sounds about right for vietnam. Probably a dollar per kilometer. I don't know when you last were here but the vinasun taxis are pretty much brand new though, as well as the ubers of course.
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Re: Taxi, UBER, etc. around the world

Postby onethousandknives » April 30th, 2017, 4:22 pm

Oh, the taxis were not from the 1980s or something. All 2010 or so model cars, but I just thought condition was pretty mediocre compared to the ones in Taiwan. I was in Hanoi area, though, and I've read Saigon is generally more developed, so maybe taxis are nicer there?
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Re: Taxi, UBER, etc. around the world

Postby CannedHam » April 30th, 2017, 6:28 pm

wingfeather wrote:The last time I had to use a taxi was in Orlando, Florida USA. $45 from the airport to the downtown (about 12 miles). Total ripoff!!! I have managed to AVOID taxis ever since!


A 20 minute ride from my place to the airport is roughly $45 + tip, :shock: with uber it's around $21 + tip.

Love uber. Pretty much take it exclusively now, and use it a lot while traveling if available (even used it while I was in India, and had only great experiences).

The taxi industry one of the most corrupt out there.
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Re: Taxi, UBER, etc. around the world

Postby Kradmelder » April 30th, 2017, 6:37 pm

I got a quote from Uber once but was so expensive it was far cheaper to drive and park at airport.
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