Say No to Taxi Passengers, Lose License 30 Days, Prayuth Proposes

The singer of famous Korean boy band Ok Taec-yeon, being refused by a Bangkok taxi driver in a Dec. 14, 2014 file photo. Photo: Ok Taec-yeon / Twitter

By Pravit Rojanaphruk
Senior Staff Writer

BANGKOK — Taxi drivers who refuse to take passengers could lose their licenses for up to 30 days.

Prime Minister Gen. Prayuth Chan-ocha said Friday he was toying with the idea in response to one of Bangkok’s most intractable taxi complaints of drivers flatly refusing to pick up passengers whose destinations don’t agree with them.

Prayuth said the idea of revoking a driver’s license for 15 to 30 days would make the drivers afraid of repeating such an offense again.

“If the violation is severe then their license should be confiscated,” he said. “This is what the people want.”

Refusing a fare is an illegal and punishable offense, but that doesn’t stop it from being regular practice in the capital city.

Over the years, numerous threats, crackdowns, lectures and passenger complaint channels have failed to end the practice. Exactly one year ago the junta hosted a photo-op of 100 taxi drivers putting stickers in their windows saying "Go Anywhere – No Rejections" to fix the problem.

Meanwhile two-wheeled taxi alternative GrabBike has been shut down by transportation officials who said it was operating illegally and introduced unfair competition to the transportation sector.

Related stories:

Military, Police to Monitor GrabBike Shutdown

Taxi Fares to Rise After Songkran

Airport Taxi Busted for ‘Turbo’ Meter

Thai Govt Releases Taxi Rating App 

Taxi Association Condemns 'No Japanese Passengers' Sign

Pravit Rojanaphruk can be reached at [email protected] and @PravitR.

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