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Green plates red carded: meter taxis are now the preferred Phuket taxi

Police to Sweep Taxis from Public Parking

Friday, September 5, 2014
PHUKET: Police in Patong will sweep green-plate taxis from public parking spots from Monday - a dramatic sign of change that today brought anguished cries from some of the drivers.

''First we had to change from illegal taxis to green-plates, now we are being forced to become meter taxis,'' one driver said, preferring to remain anonymous.

News of the changes for green-plate drivers was being conveyed to them yesterday and today in a printed message handed out from Kathu Police Station Traffic department.

Usually, a change as big as this one would be accompanied by a mass meeting and speeches from the Governor of Phuket and other authorities to explain what is happening and why.

For some reason, that isn't the case this time, and the green-plate drivers are being left to wallow in confusion.

They will be required to park in private spots, or join the queue at a holding pen in Tritrang beach, south of Patong, to be called in as required to resorts.

One driver we spoke to in Patong today is certainly right - the pressure is on and green-plate drivers are being advised that they can begin to make the switch to a meter taxi by first registering at the Land Transport Department in Phuket City.

''If we are not parked in front of the resorts, people won't see us and won't use us,'' the driver said, and he may be right about that, too.

While a few top-of-the-range limousines may survive to service the five-star market, the process of applying pressure to persuade green-plate drivers to become proud meter-taxi drivers is getting into full swing.

What the Phuket Provincial authorities should also be offering is retraining in other occupations because once the meter taxis begin work picking up and dropping off passengers all over the island, there won't be enough work for all the present drivers.

Unless counselling and realistic alternatives are offered, some may turn to crime. What can be said is that fewer young men on Phuket are going to believe that raising the deposit for a new car is the key to a relatively prosperous and steady future as a green-plate driver.

Patong's tuk-tuk drivers are unaffected by the latest development but that seems unlikely to last.

Drivers who have complained to police in a similar fashion to the way they complained to Phuketwan are being told the action is being carried out on the instructions of the National Council for Peace and Order and there's nothing that police can do to help.


Comments have been disabled for this article.


To my surprise already today I found that parking slots on Patong are for parking vehicles of general public, not for rent-a-car or taxis.
Tuktuk seemingly were pressed to roam, and submissively parked their vehicles for a short time against a trees separating parking slots. There was even parking attendant in uniform.
It seems that process of improvement is taking steam.

Posted by Sue on September 5, 2014 16:42


Taxis is taxis.

Posted by GiantFan on September 5, 2014 17:20


Start with moving them on Rat-U-thit 200 Pee rd

Posted by Sharp on September 5, 2014 20:08


Every business ever created has to move with the times, when things change, you as a person need to step back and think, should I change or not? The Not meaning you will fizzle out.
As a business owner, I have to keep on top of the latest trends and technology to offer to my clients, otherwise, why would the use me?
To everyone who is complaining, they don't understand how business works.

Posted by Tbs on September 5, 2014 20:19


The good driver seems to miss the point no one needed 40 tuk tuks outside a resort or a ramshackle unhygienic hut to blot the landscape you entered hotels looking like tramps to use as your personal bathrooms you refused to regulate yourselves to any standard or create any code of practice your species provided bad service grossly overcharged drove like kamikaze pilots in roadworthy vehs , diverted to places that pay you a commission assumed hiring a tuk tuk to go from A to B was a license to be a tour guide for the day played porter to steal peoples luggage to get them in your veh now you scream so unfair bemoaning the fact you had to become legal well your once protected species is branded the absolute dregs of tourism on the island by these actions and the sooner these cowboys are bulldozed out of the transport profession the better and replaced with decent professional services
so its being done for you a hearty three cheers to that.

Posted by slickmelb on September 5, 2014 20:53


"counselling" GOOD ONE! Disabusement of this as a career option is way better.

Posted by phonus balonus on September 5, 2014 20:54


Tbs... You have no clue with a ridiculous comment like that!!
Slickmelb... Spot on!

Posted by Sharp on September 5, 2014 21:31


I hope the military start patrolling the beach from The Gracelands Hotel and north. Because thats where many taxis, both legal and illegal , now park all day. Tuk tuks as well.Before these places had plenty of parking for beach goers, but not anymore.
Its not much point freeing up the beach if nobody can park to visit it..

Posted by Chob on September 6, 2014 02:20


This is very good new and I am looking forward seeing it coming true. However, not only green plate cars need to tackled, there are still plenty of white/black plate ( illegal ) taxis on the roads and occupying steadily public parking space. Waiting anxiously for the nexty step: Tuk Tuks

Posted by Resident on September 6, 2014 08:27


"First we had to change from illegal taxis to green-plates, and now..etc. ".
It seems that many thai people not understand the meaning of 'illegal'. As illegal is just a word only. For sure NCPO means, time for many.

Posted by Kurt on September 6, 2014 12:44

Friday December 1, 2023
Horizon Karon Beach Resort & Spa


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