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Meter taxis at Phuket airport will park all over the island from August 3

Meter Taxis Expand All Over Phuket

Wednesday, July 29, 2015
PHUKET: Parking bays are to be created for meter taxis all over Phuket in a strategy that seems likely to give the holiday island an improving taxi system.

Ten high-profile spots around Phuket will gain one or two parking bays from August 3, Governor Nisit Jansomwong told a meeting of the island's top officials at Phuket Provincial Hall today.

The much-mulled move comes as authorities finally expand parking for the island's meter taxis, which now number 370 cabs, from their main base at Phuket International Airport.

It's likely that the move will make more meter taxis available to be hailed around the island.

The governor's announcement today included parking spots for meter cabs at:

.. Phuket bus terminals one and two in Phuket City

.. Provincial Hall

.. The Public Transport offices in Saphan Hin

.. Patong Hospital

.. Chalong Police Station

.. Karon Police Station

.. Loma Park football field in Patong

.. Phuket City Police Station

.. Rajabhat University

GrabTaxi, an app-based taxi call service, has announced its willingness to work with Phuket Public Transport officials to help regularise the Phuket taxi system.

One remaining issue is that meter taxis on the holiday island, like the green-plate negotiable fee taxis, cost about six times more than taxis in Bangkok and other parts of Thailand.

The extreme fares remain one of the most complained-about items for tourists, especially those who visit Bangkok before coming on to Phuket.

Today's announcement came after a crackdown that saw six Phuket taxi drivers fined 2000 baht each for doctoring meters.

Comments

Comments have been disabled for this article.

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We always like to see, often laugh, at any attempt to "improve" any service, we hold our breathes on this one, however, even today, as reported in PW, we see some "metered" taxis that have "modified" meters. Will we see much change, well, we hopes so, but past failures out number the successful changes, unless it means an increase in tuk tuk/taxi revenue. We have yet to see any changes that benefit the customer.

Posted by Laurie Howells on July 29, 2015 15:58

Editor Comment:

All positive changes benefit the customer, Laurie. Catching and fining six meter-benders sends a message to all the others. It beats me how you and your glass-half-empty pals get through life without finding a single positive. Change is inevitable. One of these days, you should try laughing for the right reasons.

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Ed, from past "changes/failures" I suggest it is you that sees the world thru "glass-half-empty" eyes, can you find ANY customer that says the "changes" have benefitted them... just ONE Ed... yes we ALL know you take the safe line "change is inevitable" we all know it is... what a cop-out statement.

Posted by Laurie Howells on July 29, 2015 16:22

Editor Comment:

We can only report the changes, Laurie. We have no power to correct your chronic no-hope outlook.

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Ed the stop gilding the lily, doctoring the meters. Pff. What they were doing was blatant stealing, a criminal offence.

Posted by Duncan on July 29, 2015 16:23

Editor Comment:

Sure it was. Let's hope the drivers were warned that another offence will cost them their livelihoods.

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It might just be a step in the right direction. Fingers crossed.

What they need to do now is remove the responsibility of policing them from the police, who cannot be all things to all people; create a new department of inspectors whose sole role is to go around the island to monitor the taxis.

Posted by Logic on July 29, 2015 17:07

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Servicing component of the whole taxi service on Phuket,except price, will surely will improve.

In regard of price, even with slightly volatile demand based on the sent nights/ ave.expenditure figures, there is no market-based factor that prices would drop.

In term of state intervention, to regulate prices and regulate them down, that would be unwise economic policy for now, as tourists - the main market for taxi services in Phuket (every market has its own features, it should be taken into consideration when analysing; also whatever is status quo there should be forces that shift it to the other position, no changes here happen without such forces) has no signs that arrivals really drops because of taxi process. I think there is fairly still a lot of space for increases of taxi fares until tourists will start boycott Phuket, so it would be not clever from policy point of view to reduce taxi fares, as this will not result in overall higher revenue in this or other sectors, it will increase mobility of tourists to some degree, that is all, they will not eat three dinners per night in different locations, and other erlated considerations.

I am as taxi services consumer of course not happy about that, but at the same time I am not willing engage myself in wishful thinking and fantasy world on dropping Phuket taxi fares, it's better to be realistic.

Posted by Sue on July 29, 2015 17:16

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At least ,this is a good news and hope this is the beginning until a full taxi meter service on the island . Now taxi mafia has set up fare so high with regular increase these last years despite oil price decreasing that is the last issue to fight again : same price as Bangkok

Posted by Anonymous on July 29, 2015 17:40

Editor Comment:

There should be a loooong moratorium on fares increases. Ten years, at least.

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parked taxis are of little use to anyone.. what is needed is meter cabs which circulate and can be hailed or called to a pick up point..
look at these locations and ask yourself how often people at these locations are likely to need a taxi.. how about jungceylon/bangla as a prime spot?

Posted by another steve on July 29, 2015 18:31

Editor Comment:

One assumes telephone calls will also be made, another steve. Circulating meter taxis are already evident and there should be more as a result of this move.

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It is unrealistic to expect a sudden change with metered taxi's in abundance plying their trade throughout Phuket island but this most certainly a step in the right direction
Any weakening of the tuk tuk dominance is good but it will be important to ensure that the tuk tuk drivers do not simply abandon their tuk tuk's and drive metered taxi's and continue in their unacceptable manner
In particular meter taxi fares needs to be brought in line with other parts of Thailand and good behaviour of the drivers enforced
Should Grab Taxi and Uber develop a significant presence then it would be also helpful.

Posted by Paul on July 30, 2015 07:44

Editor Comment:

Uber's reputation is for working outside existing systems, whether or not existing fares are reasonable. That could work either way on Phuket, where fares are strictly controlled - by the drivers.

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Whatever happened to the airport buses??
Bit naive to think that most non Hi So Phuket resident Thais do not have sufficient transportation alternatives via friends trucks, motorbikes etc. that they need or want to engage tourist centric taxis or tuk tuks etc?

Posted by david on July 30, 2015 11:18

Editor Comment:

There are far too many deaths and needless crippling injuries and too much traffic on Phuket's roads because of the lack of a proper public transport system, david.


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