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October 12, 2009

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Home » Metro » Public Services

Scramble to beat taxi fare rises

CAB passengers are trying to beat yesterday's fare rise by choosing taxis with meters that have not yet updated their prices.
Shanghai transport authorities estimated it will take more than a week to change more than 40,000 taxi meters to reflect the new fares, which now start at 12 yuan (US$1.75).
Customers had tried to book cabs yesterday with older meters but a taxi call center official said they could not identify which had updated meters and couldn't help people who asked to book cabs at the old rate.
"I like to save money as much as I can," said one passenger Xu Xiaoying, who took a taxi at the old price of 50 yuan yesterday from Pudong New Area to western Changning District. The 15.1-kilometer journey would cost her at least "5 more yuan" if she had taken one with an upgraded meter, she said.
Xu said it was easy to tell cabs with updated meters because the new price stickers on the windows are in blue, whereas the old ones were in red.
One resident surnamed Yang said he would still take a taxi when he was late to work despite the price rise. The fare increase was announced by the Shanghai Development and Reform Commission last Friday.
Minimum fares rise by 1 yuan to 12 yuan, with additional kilometers increasing by 0.3 yuan to 2.4 yuan after the first 3km.
Cab rides after 11pm and before 6am will rise to 16 yuan from 14 yuan for the first 3 kilometers, with extra kilometers costing 3.10 yuan instead of 2.40 yuan.
The price rises mean taxi passengers will pay about 10 percent more in the city's first fare increase for three years. Authorities said the new tariffs offset higher fuel prices and environmental protection costs.
In raising cab fares, the commission also scrapped a subsidy to taxi drivers paid for the past two years to cover rising fuel costs.


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