Traffic and songthaews

Friday, 18 January 2013 From Issue Vol. XXI No. 3

Dear Sir;

Since Pattaya boasts an English speaking mayor, I wonder if he might address the concerns publicly of the English speaking community that provides so much revenue and creation of jobs in this great city.

For some time now there have been continuing debates on the level of traffic in and around Pattaya which seems to be growing almost by the day and especially at holiday times.

I would express my particular concern on this occasion about the songthaew. I have for some 24 years supported this institution and service provided by the citizens of Pattaya for the benefit of its community. I fear that this great service and the providers of same over recent years have been abusing their privilege of providing this service to the community.

Many now choose only to pick up fares for 200 baht and 400 baht one stop one place in deference to those wishing to hop on and hop off. The unreliability of the service forces the community to seek more reliable forms of transport, buying bikes or cars. This in turn increases the traffic levels.

If these citizens who drive the songthaews do not realize their responsibility to the community to provide an efficient and reliable transport service then they must forfeit that privilege and the town hall must be obligated to provide a reliable and alternative means of transport to reduce Pattaya traffic.

Clearly the licensing and operation of songthaews is not being managed properly by the town hall and the drivers are abusing their position to the detriment of both the Thai people and the visitors.

Yours,

PAW

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4 comments

  • Comment Link Monday, 28 January 2013 22:26 posted by Dana

    Attn: Aussie Bill

    Thank-you for your patronizing pontifications. I disagree with every one of your comments.

    "I am a Guest here and I didn't come here to change things."

    Try it my way. I am a human here and all humans should expect and want dignity. Do you automatically receive that from Thai culture? I'll help you here. No you do not. I find fault with that. It does not make me an aggressor. I makes me tired.

  • Comment Link Friday, 25 January 2013 10:47 posted by Aussie Bill

    I've been around this City for over 20 years and can say I have never been "Riped Off" by a Songtheaw Driver.It's best to have the correct change. When I have had to tender a 20 Bhart note I smile and say Kaw Hi Sip Baht Na Khap. I have never had a Problem this way.Rather the Driver looks at me and smiles as he hands me my change.When in Bangkok and I hire a Tuk Tuk I can not claim I was " Over Charged" if I pay the agreed price. No need to raise your voice or rant and rave. after all 10 Bt is only 33C aud. Not a big deal for someone who earns 10 times what a Thai takes home. By your very words you are the aggressor,You have steriotyped all Thai's as Criminals. With your attitude never return a meal to the Kitchen as when it comes back I hate to think what has been done to it. I love Thailand and I can put up with the way things are.I am a Guest here and I didn't come here to change things.

  • Comment Link Thursday, 24 January 2013 00:44 posted by Dana

    The only way I can stay mentally stable and mentally alert when dealing with Pattaya songtheaw drivers is to assume that I am dealing with criminals. This puts me in the right defensive frame of mind. Too aggressive for you? Ok, consider this. I regard tuk tuk drivers as even worse representatives of the Kingdom and have not taken one in years. Prejudice based on experience is data the brain uses to survive.

  • Comment Link Tuesday, 22 January 2013 15:52 posted by Sean Murphy

    Hey PAW, Been around for 24 years? Durr!!!
    By now you should have worked out how the Songtheaw's work.You big spenders you get a fair ride for Tb10 on a designated route.
    Get off these routes and it's up to you to negotiate a price.
    If you are a"Cheap Charley" and want to go to ihe
    Bus Depot, you can change Songtheaws at the
    roundabout and board another going up P/Nua.total cost Tb 20.
    Or you can get a few friends and go for a negotiated price
    Other then that take it up with the English Speaking mayor.Tell him how much you and your Cronies spend and he will tell you to "Get on Your Bike"..
    (Bangkok Post 21/1/13.Taxi driver assaults two aged women (Nips) who refuse topay Tb 1200 for a short trip.)

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