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Tourists in Singapore fall victim to touting taxi drivers charging exorbitant fares

Tourists in Singapore express concerns as complaints about overcharging and touting by taxi drivers near Marina Bay Sands increase. Recent reports by 8world highlight the persistence of some drivers charging up to $65 for rides. Marina Bay Sands and the Land Transport Authority are taking measures to address the issue.

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SINGAPORE – A surge in complaints about overcharging and touting by taxi drivers near the Marina Bay Sands (MBS) in Singapore has raised concerns among tourists.

This issue came to light last month when a group of tourists accused a limousine taxi driver of charging an exorbitant $100 for a 3km ride from MBS to Chinatown hotel.

Now, it seems that some drivers still persist in soliciting passengers at the MBS taxi stand.

Tourists face exorbitant fares as MPV taxis charge up to $65 for rides

According to a report by 8world, several MPV taxis have been observed charging between $50 and $65 for rides to popular city areas like Orchard Road and Little India.

An investigative reporter from 8world who visited the MBS taxi stand on Saturday afternoon (Nov 26) witnessed at least six MPV taxis approaching tourists with their windows down and doors open.

The drivers will actively engaged with potential passengers, quoting prices for their desired destinations, and if unsuccessful in finding a passenger, some drivers reportedly circled back to the taxi stand.

In an attempt to assess the extent of the issue, the reporter inquired about fares to Orchard Road from six different MPV taxi drivers.

The responses ranged from $50 to $65, with all drivers attributing the high fares to purported traffic jams.

According to 8world, a driver allegedly asked that the reporter board the vehicle before “fare negotiations,” but later reversed his stance, stating that the fare would be determined based on the meter after realizing the “passenger” was a reporter.

In a recorded footage, a group of tourists, shared that they were informed by the driver of an MPV that the journey to their Little India hotel would amount to $65.

Despite the steep fare, the family opted for the taxi service as it was raining that day, and they were “tired of walking.”

Expressing dissatisfaction, another visitor named Jonathan disclosed that a different driver proposed a $60 fare for a trip to Orchard Road, significantly surpassing the rates provided by ride-hailing services.

@8world.news

滨海湾金沙出现霸王车砍菜头现象严重,从金沙到乌节路四公里车程竟开价高达65元。记者也亲睹游客因赶时间,无奈硬着头皮上车。 https://bit.ly/3sZEX8d #sgnews #touting #taxi #8worldnews 😢#8视界新闻网

♬ original sound – 8视界新闻网 – 8视界新闻网

 

Responding to the situation, a spokesperson for Marina Bay Sands acknowledged the touting issue and stated that they are collaborating with relevant authorities to address the problem.

Measures include increased manpower to supervise the area and the placement of traffic cones to prevent unauthorized parking.

Moreover, a prominently displayed signboard at the MBS taxi stand emphasizes the illegality of touting and overcharging, indicating that fares must adhere to the taximeter, and receipts must be issued upon request.

The Land Transport Authority (LTA), in response to 8world’s queries, emphasizes the seriousness of soliciting passengers and the legal consequences for private hire drivers and cabbies caught engaging in such practices.

Offenders may face 12 demerit points and a S$500 fine, with continued violations leading to a four-week suspension of their driver’s license.

LTA recommended passengers make travel arrangements with licensed service operators and encouraged them to report any issues to LTA.

Additionally, passengers are advised to verify that the taximeter is activated and the fare is correctly reflected at the end of their trip to ensure a fair and legal transaction.

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MBS has a MRT connection doesn’t it? Tired of even walking to the train station? It is true the cost of PHV and fuel has increased so much and there are traffic jams. If the passengers have a choice, why be bothered about these touts? Take the train, the bus, or wait for the cheaper hail riding lah.

reporters should just take their license plate and report them to police and their companies. this is illegal long ago. they should be fired and their driving license cancelled.
polis too busy fixxing oppo?

It’s ironic that MBS says they are aware of touting when they themselves pay all the Vellfire and Alphard MPV drivers the same fare to chauffeur their valued casino clients back to their hotels. Perhaps $65 is a small price considering how much these valued clients contribute to their coffer at the casino table.

So poor thing

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