Getting a taxi represents the most convenient way of traveling when you visit another city. It is much more comfortable than using public transport, while you don’t need to worry about getting to the right destination as well.
Also, we have to mention that taxi services are improving in many countries, especially because of the increased number of alternatives like Lyft and Uber. In many cases, you will be able to use a website or app to find a vehicle. For instance, if you are traveling to Hague, the great option would be to use an online platform for getting a taxi, and you can read more here about that option.
Moreover, keep in mind that the practice related to getting a taxi, paying, and other features might not be the same as in your place. If you are not aware of some things, there is also a chance for fraud. Therefore, you should always read more about taxi services when you are planning to travel. Here are the biggest mistakes to avoid in foreign countries.
1. Not Researching Available Services
It is especially important to check these things if you are traveling to some third-world country, where fake taxi drivers are targeting tourists from foreign countries and charge them much more for driving. You might end up in a situation where you will pay $50 for a ride that actually costs $5 in some city.
In most cases, there are strict rules related to taxi services, where vehicles must be in a certain color, with a prominent sign and license number. Besides that, you should check how they are calculating the amount you need to pay. The most popular solution is a taximeter, where you can see the amount at any moment. Also, online services allow users to check the price before they even start the ride.
2. Not Learning More About the Locations
Besides the common issue related to fake services in popular tourist places, another problem is that a regular taxi driver might scam you into paying much more. Be sure to check the taximeter all the time. Also, learn more about the streets and locations so you can be sure that the driver is using the right directions.
For example, someone might decide to intentionally take the wrong path so he can drive you for a longer time and earn more money that way. In that matter, if a driver suggests you a shortcut or some alternative path, be sure to check that before you accept it.
3. Don’t Be Afraid to Argue With the Driver
The biggest mistake to make is to allow someone to scam you. For example, when someone pays a lot of money for some service even though it is a fraud. Keep in mind that the prices are usually suitable to the living standard of the country where you are traveling. Therefore, if you are coming from the EU, Canada, or the US, chances are great that this service is much more expensive in your country.
In that matter, if someone asks you to pay $50 for a 10-minute drive, that probably is a scam, and you should immediately report it. There is no reason to be afraid, no matter how suspicious or dangerous the driver seems. You should check the emergency number of the country where you are going, and add it to your phone so you can contact the police at any moment.
Exotic countries live from tourism, and their officials are actively working on improving the conditions for foreign visitors. With that in mind, you can expect the police to be on your side when you report that the driver is asking for a much higher price.
4. Always Call the Service in Advance
Chances are much higher than you will face some troubles if you choose to get into the first vehicle you see on the streets. Scammers are usually spread around places with a lot of tourists, especially train stations and airports.
We suggest you prepare before traveling and check the available options. If there is a website that you can use to schedule a drive, that would be the safest solution. The same is for choosing to pay with a card instead of using cash.
5. Don’t Lose Focus
The worst-case scenario would be to not look through the window and let the driver go into some unknown destination. The situation is especially risky if you are alone, and you just arrived with your bags. Some fake driver might decide to get you into some hidden spot and steal your goods. Avoid sitting on the front, and keep your phone active in your hands, so you can call emergency service if you notice anything suspicious.
It is important to learn more about the common tricks drivers are using all the time to get more money from foreign tourists. When you know about average prices and other details, there is no way to get into such scams.
If there is no way to pay with a card, be aware of the fact that the place that you are visiting must have lower or similar prices as taxi services in your country. Also, avoid paying if they don’t activate the taximeter at the start of the service.
According to the law in many countries, a licensed taxi vehicle must have a proper sign and a unique number so you can know that the company is legit. You should pay attention to these details since don’t focusing on them is the only way to get into trouble.