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Thai transport minister agrees to taxi fare hikes in Bangkok

Tanutam Thawan

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The Ministry of Transport has given approval for taxi fares in Bangkok to go up within a month.

Transport Minister Saksayam Chidchob met with representatives of four Bangkok taxi groups and officials of the Land Transport Department to discuss demand by taxi drivers to hike taxi fares. Taxi drivers have been pleading for an increase for years and have staged a number of protests. They say they need the rise in line with the increasing petrol and diesel costs. They also claim that they are often stuck in traffic and no distance is being added onto the fare whilst they are not moving forward.

The new taxi fares will be…

  • the basic rate of 35 baht for the first kilometre distance remains unchanged
  • 50 baht/km from 5.50 baht/km for 1 plus km-10 km
  • 7 baht/km from 6.50 baht/km for distance above 10 km to 20 km
  • 8 baht/km from 7.50 baht/km for distance over 20 km to 40 km
  • 50 baht/km from 8 baht for distance over 40 to 60 km
  • 9 baht/km for distance over 60 km to 80 km
  • 50 baht/km for distance above 80 km.

Additionally, if a taxi is caught in a traffic jam and can travel not more than 6 km/hour, the fare will increase by one baht for every minute stuck in traffic.

The new fares are expected to come into effect in 30 days . The meeting also agreed to increase the surcharge for taxies at Suvarnabhumi international airport from 50 to 70 baht for ordinary taxies and 90 baht for large taxies. Airports of Thailand is being asked to publicise the new taxi rates.

Passenger luggage will also be subjected to a charge of 20 baht per item for three or more bags. Private cars will be allowed to operate as a taxi but they have to be registered as a company.

The changes don’t apply in the rest of the country, let alone Phuket where taxi fares are routinely 3-4 times the rates of Bangkok taxis and the meter is rarely used.

SOURCE: Thai PBS

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Local Thai journalist speaking fluent Thai and English. Tanutam studied in Khon Kaen before attending Bangkok’s Chulalongkhorn University.

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