''Many complaints have been received,'' said Vice Governor Jamleran Tipayapongtada. ''It was not unusual for a motorcycle taxi to charge children 300 baht for the journey from Surakul Stadium in Phuket City to Robinson department store, downtown - little more than a five-minute ride.''
Vice Governor Jamleran said this was unacceptable. ''It's time for action on public transport,'' he said at a meeting at Provincial Hall in Phuket City.
Contracts between some drivers and Airports of Thailand, which manages Phuket airport, expired on September 30 so that would be a deadline to set things straight, he added.
Thirty more metered taxis had been approved for Phuket airport, taking the total to 110. But the vice governor said that many complaints had been received from people who said the taxis kept their meters off and charged similar large amounts to other illegal taxis.
The flagfall was to be set at 50 baht, but another 100 baht was needed to cover the fee charged by Airports of Thailand, making it 150 baht the moment someone got into a metered cab at Phuket airport.
From there the fare was set at seven baht a kilo for the first two kilos then six baht a kilo for three to 20 kilometres, meaning a trip from Phuket Airport to Patong should cost 450 baht.
The directors of Phuket's three districts - Muang Phuket City, Kathu and Thalang - were to meet on Friday to compile data on the numbers of tuk-tuks, taxis illegal and legal, and motorcycles and cars for rent across Phuket.
He said with that data, a course of action could be determined. There were also 150 green-plate limousines, whose arrangements were made directly with Phuket airport management.
The Director of Phuket Land Transport, Terayoot Prasertphol, said there were more than 400,000 motorcycles and 200,000 cars on Phuket, with many households having at least two vehicles and 10,000 cars being added each year.
''We want to make Phuket comply with set standards, and that means improving the cleanliness and look of the Phuket airport, too,'' he said.