Tank versus the cabbies

Bangkok cabbie

Bangkok cabbie

Took cabs three times during my recent Asian trip. This is one of my cabbies. Friendly guy as you can see. We negotiated a price for a lengthy ride in Bangkok over a short distance. (Traffic in Bangkok is awful). Saved me from lugging my scuba dive equipment-stuffed suitcase up and down an overpass.

Other taxi trips left me feeling ripped off. Here’s what I learned:

* The internet has websites that estimate the cost of taxi fare in many cities. Check one out.

* Contact your hotel or destination and ask for a taxi fare estimate. They should be able to give you a ballpark amount from the airport, bus or train station to the destination. Ask the driver the estimated fare before you get in the cab.

* Consider taking transit. Research routes and fares in advance. I love using transit. This is easier if you arrive during daylight hours. Several Thai bus drivers helped me get my bag on/off their bus. With a smile.

Travel + Escape’s 10 Most Common Travel Scams

* Research taxi scams in your destination city. Sometimes meters are rigged or the base fare is being overcharged.

I tend to avoid cabs whenever possible. I always look for hotels with shuttles or easy connections with transit.

Don’t get me started on the Tuk Tuks.

Traffic in Bangkok is CRAZY.

Traffic in Bangkok is CRAZY.

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