Phuket Airport taxis inspected as Thailand legalises three more apps

Phuket Land Transport Office (PLTO) officials yesterday initiated inspections of taxi services at Phuket International Airport. These checks occurred ahead of the PLTO’s announcement that three new app-based taxi services, including Maxim, are now considered legal in Thailand.

These inspections took place at Phuket Airport from 4pm to 6pm. In their online statement, the PLTO said the checks were a collaborative effort with the Phuket branch of Airports of Thailand (AoT Phuket), the Phuket Tourist Police and the Sakhu Police. Their objective was to jointly investigate any illicit usage of private cars for passenger transportation, a practice the PLTO labels as black plate operations.

The officials specifically targeted individuals utilising private cars as taxis, a violation of the Motor Vehicle Act and the Road Traffic Act. The PLTO reported that two individuals were apprehended for illegally using private cars as taxis. In addition, 21 charges were recorded for breaches of the Motor Vehicle Act.

These inspections were conducted before the PLTO shared a public notice issued by the Department of Land Transport (DLT) that subtly indicated the legalisation of three more app-based taxi services in Thailand. The DLT originally posted its notice on Wednesday, February 14, with the PLTO sharing the same notice at 7.15pm yesterday February 15, more than an hour after the airport checks had ended, reported Phuket News.

The DLT issued this notice to encourage the public to use legally sanctioned, electronic taxi services, emphasising the safety, service quality, and fair pricing these platforms offer. The notice confirmed the approval of three new taxi app services by the DLT, bringing the total number of legally recognised taxi app services in Thailand to 11.

Phuket Airport taxis inspected as Thailand legalises three more apps | News by Thaiger
Picture courtesy of Phuket News

In October last year, over 100 public transport operators, including metered taxi drivers, green plate taxis, and passenger van drivers, assembled at Phuket Provincial Hall yesterday to formally complain. They are demanding that the Phuket provincial government take more robust action against illegal private car services operating through taxi apps on the island.

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Bright Choomanee

With a degree in English from Srinakharinwirot University, Bright specializes in writing engaging content. Her interests vary greatly, including lifestyle, travel, and news. She enjoys watching series with her orange cat, Garfield, in her free time.

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