Prague City Hall inspections are still facing overpriced taxis and scamming tourists. In extreme cases, it is overpriced in the order of thousands of crowns; Prague now wants to allow taxi drivers to raise official prices, the first time after 13 years.
„As an example of a record overpricing, I can mention the event from this Wednesday, when we have received a complaint from a foreign tourist who paid CZK 7,523 for a ride from the airport to Pankrác, ”said Vít Hofman, a spokesperson for the municipality. Current prices for such a trip are in the order of hundreds of crowns.
Of course, the vast majority of taxi drivers are fair. 844 inspections were carried out by the Magistrate officials as of the last year and there were 30 “overpriced” cases, with an average overcharge of 398 crowns.
However, taxi drivers also have experience with clients. “I often ask the customer where they want me to go. Especially with tourists and non-Praguers, I repeatedly ask when they pull out a mobile phone and wonder that I was not going where the applications were navigating them to. Some demand that I go their way, even if I know Prague and they do not. For the original price, of course, “said one of the drivers to Právo.
Fines of up to one hundred thousand
In connection with the overpriced taxi ride, 39 decisions were issued in Prague last year (some administrative proceedings from the previous year). Fines totalling over CZK 2.4 million were imposed. The average fine amounts to almost CZK 62,000.
According to Hofman, compliance with city-set maximum prices is the most often checked criteria using fake tourists.
If a taxi driver issues a taximeter check, the inspection is simple, because the document shows the prices based on which the final price is calculated according to the mileage and waiting time.
„If a taxi driver does not issue a taximeter document, the price requested by the taxi driver is controlled by applications were based on the exact route given by the officials, it is entered into the computer and then the distance is measured. It then calculates the maximum possible cost for transportation. A similar procedure is followed in cases of isolated passenger complaints,” said the spokesperson.
City wants to raise maximum prices
Now, the first time after 13 years, the municipality wants to allow taxi drivers to raise their prices. The highest possible price per kilometre should increase by eight crowns to 36 crowns, the boarding rate by 20 crowns to 60 crowns and a minute of waiting would cost more by a crown to a total of seven crowns.
The proposed increase was calculated by the municipality based on the annual cost of operating a taxi and the money a driver can earn.