Nightmare on song taew street


Dear Hillary,

Can nothing be done about the song taew drivers?  For a tourist city they give the place a bad name with their stand-over tactics and demands for fares much greater than should be the case.  No wonder the foreign tourists look for taxis, but unless they have their wits about them they will again be quoted exorbitant fares, rather than using the meters.  From what we thought was going to be a good idea, this has turned it into a nightmare.  For a real fun time, try a tuk-tuk which will attempt to take you straight to the nearest jewelry shop that pays for their fuel.  Until our city fathers meet the song taew monopoly head on and produce a real public transport system, this will always be a third world tourist destination.

“Where you go?”

Dear “Where you go?”

Unfortunately you are quite correct, my Petal.  The song taews which do not have any fixed or marked destination will always be a turn-off for tourists, as the majority of the drivers do not speak another language.  Why would you expect them to get on transport with unmarked destinations?  Perhaps it is time for the TAT to get involved and issue ‘tourist bus’ licenses for drivers who meet a minimum standard in communication.  Hillary has given up with the song taews, taxis and tuk-tuks, and uses motorcycle taxis when possible.  They appear to be a friendlier bunch but will heed the “cha-cha” (slowly) instructions.  You do have to barter first, but that’s part of the fun of living in the ‘third world’.