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Amman taxi drivers refuse customers, manipulate meters, passengers say

By Ahmed Bani Mustafa - Oct 31,2016 - Last updated at Oct 31,2016

Taxi drivers must abide by speed limits, take the shortest route and use the meter, according to regulations (File photo)

AMMAN — Residents of Amman expressed dissatisfaction with the capital's taxi drivers, who they say speed, refuse fares to inconvenient destinations, fail to use meters and do not know directions. 

Taxi drivers recently interviewed by The Jordan Times said they hoped a government study on public transport fees would lead to an increase in fares.  

But Ahmad Abu Ali, an accountant at a food manufacturing company who takes a taxi to work every day, said drivers should abide by traffic rules before asking for any rise in fees.

""I live in Shafa Badran and I take a taxi daily to my job in Khalda. Most of the time taxi drivers are annoying. They are never dressed properly and sometimes some of them smell bad," Abu Ali claimed.  

Most taxi drivers speed and disregard their passengers, he charged. 

"I went to Dubai several times. The taxi drivers there are dressed very nicely and they drive according to the speed limits. They do not tell you the story of their life on the way like they do here. Taxi drivers need to focus on work ethics rather than just asking for extra money," Abu Ali added.

Land Transport Regulatory Commission Spokesperson Abla Wishah told The Jordan Times that the commission has no authority over the field performance of taxi drivers.

"The commission's job is to grant licences to taxi agencies and taxis, and check on the specifications of vehicles," she said, adding that the field is the Traffic Department's responsibility.

In every taxi, there are guidelines and instructions telling passengers about rules that the driver must abide by, such as speed limits, taking the shortest route, not smoking and using the meter, Wishah said.

If a taxi driver does not use the meter, the customer has the right not to pay, she noted. 

Another customer, commenting on Facebook, said even finding a taxi willing to accept a passenger can be a struggle. 

"I always had a hard time finding a cab," the customer wrote, explaining that drivers do not stop, and when they do, they ask about the destination. 

"If they do not like it, they ask you to step out."

Another commenter agreed. "They are providing a service. They are not allowed to refuse customers, change the meter or add extra [charges because of]... fuel prices or traffic congestion."

Meanwhile, some taxi drivers park their cars near five-star hotels or night clubs, hoping to extract higher fares from tourists who might not be familiar with local fares, the currency or directions.  

Taxi driver Abu Adam said not all drivers are the same, adding that most are professionals who abide by the rules of the job.   

"Some of the drivers do choose clients according to their destinations, as going to some areas means getting stuck in a traffic jam or having to drive back empty," he said.

 

The only requirement to become a taxi driver is to have an appropriate driving licence and pass a security background check, Abu Adam said, noting that some drivers are new to the job and are not yet familiar with directions.

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Comments

i think in order to make tourism boost in jordan, all yellow taxis should be cancelled, replaced by proper agency with highest strict rules, for meter control, attitude, body odor, shaving, car cleaning, putting on AC whehn hot, bank terminals to pay by credit card
otherwise keep complaining that tourists not coming to jordan

I took a taxi from dar hotel in shmesani to city mall. Taxi driver after flirting all the way, the meter read 4.50 jd . I gave him 50 jd note, and he counted the change back in front of me ; it looked all proper and above board, when inside and I was trying to pay for a beverage I discovered that I had half the amount of money. Beware he fold the notes and it looks as if he counted 46 jd when it is really 23. I was duped NOT GOOD ADVERTISING FOR JORDAN.

If you don't know the area, they take the longest rout. If you speak English or another foreign language they tipple it.I took my wife to Jordan (I have a place in Amman) for her first tim and we jump in a yellow cab to head to Rainbow street from Khalda. I was sitting up front since it's normal and my wife was sitting in the back. The driver was getting all sweet and nice with my wife. There were talking in Arabic. The driver though I did not understand or speak Arabic because I was talking to my wife in English. I cursed the driver out from English then my Arabic just came out. The driver was in a shock and I told him to drop us off here. I did not pay him and I called him names left and right. He tried to apologize to me after I told him my parents are Jordanian.

Be careful and do not get in any cab till they turn on the meter. They always say the meter is broke. BS they turn off the meter so they can charge triple. They did it to my youngest sister and her best friend that lives in Jordan. They did not pay the driver at all since her best friend went off at the driver.

It does not matter if you take the bus to Aqaba or Taxi there always smoking. Even there is a sign says no smoking.

The worst of the worst , excessive cursing not to mention flirting and inappropriate advances on female passengers , demanding extra money sometimes double or triple the regulated amount , they say cab drivers reflect the image of the country , and I know that my country is better than that something needs to be done and fast .

This is exactly why I prefer to take Uber. I've been refused service many times because the driver doesn't want to go there. I've also got into many arguments because the driver wants to charge extra, also they don't accept credit cards. This is why I have started using Uber. No more headaches.

Especially when they have foreign passenger, they start to say "Meter is broken, and general price for your destination is 5JD, 10JD" When it comes to mid-night, they double this.
They are THIEF!!! Gov. need to do something!!

The worst people put behind wheels. Of course there are exceptions. But the majority are very rude, they have the disgusting habit of smoking without even asking if it's ok with the passenger, they can't drive at all and of course excessive cursing. And on top of that I'm almost certain that they manipulate the fair meter. Horrible horrible people.

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