[ED] Improve taxi service

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[ED] Improve taxi service

Fare hike in Seoul takes effect Saturday

Seoul taxi fares will rise from Saturday for the first time since October 2013. Effective at 4 a.m., the base rate for the first 2 kilometers will increase to 3,800 won ($3.38) from 3,000 won. The basic fare for deluxe and jumbo taxis will also be hiked to 6,500 won, up 1,500 won.

The fare increase appears to be inevitable in that it has been frozen for five-and-a-half years. It is also necessary to give better treatment to cabbies who are reportedly suffering from inadequately low living wages.

Yet, the price increase is not good news for those in the low-income bracket as it is another burden on their household budgets amid the prolonged economic slowdown. It is also likely to trigger a fare hike in other forms of public transport such as subways and intra-city buses.

There are also many citizens who are not happy with the taxi fare rise. Even though the majority of taxi drivers serve their passengers kindly, there are still many who are not that kind, even denying a ride for those going a short distance. Some cabbies' reckless driving habits show little signs of change, making passengers uneasy.

On the occasion of the fare increase, both the city administration and taxi operators should cooperate to work out a plan to provide better services. On the part of passengers, they need to be kind enough to say "thank you" to the driver when they get out of the taxi as the old saying goes: What goes around comes around.

But a fundamental way to improve taxi services should be the guarantee of living expenses for taxi drivers. To find a clue, the city authorities, taxi drivers' unions and taxi companies should seek to work out mutually acceptable terms, including the introduction of a fixed monthly salary system for the drivers. The municipality needs to consider offering subsidies to taxi operators as it does to bus companies.




Fare hike in Seoul takes effect Saturday

Seoul taxi fares will rise from Saturday for the first time since October 2013. Effective at 4 a.m., the base rate for the first 2 kilometers will increase to 3,800 won ($3.38) from 3,000 won. The basic fare for deluxe and jumbo taxis will also be hiked to 6,500 won, up 1,500 won.

The fare increase appears to be inevitable in that it has been frozen for five-and-a-half years. It is also necessary to give better treatment to cabbies who are reportedly suffering from inadequately low living wages.

Yet, the price increase is not good news for those in the low-income bracket as it is another burden on their household budgets amid the prolonged economic slowdown. It is also likely to trigger a fare hike in other forms of public transport such as subways and intra-city buses.

There are also many citizens who are not happy with the taxi fare rise. Even though the majority of taxi drivers serve their passengers kindly, there are still many who are not that kind, even denying a ride for those going a short distance. Some cabbies' reckless driving habits show little signs of change, making passengers uneasy.

On the occasion of the fare increase, both the city administration and taxi operators should cooperate to work out a plan to provide better services. On the part of passengers, they need to be kind enough to say "thank you" to the driver when they get out of the taxi as the old saying goes: What goes around comes around.

But a fundamental way to improve taxi services should be the guarantee of living expenses for taxi drivers. To find a clue, the city authorities, taxi drivers' unions and taxi companies should seek to work out mutually acceptable terms, including the introduction of a fixed monthly salary system for the drivers. The municipality needs to consider offering subsidies to taxi operators as it does to bus companies.






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