Taxi Fares in Tokyo to Change Effective Jan. 30
Foreign tourists, watch out! Taxi fares in Tokyo are changing effective next month to benefit some and hurt others, the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport announced December 20.
According to the new fare scheme, the current scheme of 700-730 yen for the first 2 kilometers will now be 380-410 yen for the first 1 kilometer - meaning the base fare is reduced; so is the first base distance.
The taxi operators in Tokyo had long appealed to the ministry for such fare scheme changes, and the ministerial conference on commodity prices approved such changes December 20.
The ministry authorized the taxi operators to set new fares effective January 30 next year - from 700-730 yen for the first 2 km to 380-410 yen for 1.052 km. Most operators are likely to set it at 410 yen.
What it all means is that the fares will drop roughly up to 1. 7 km but rise over 6.5 km. The operators' argument is that the changes should benefit the elders and foreign tourists who use taxis for shorter rides.
Minister Ishii pointed out in his press interview that the changes are expected to urge more foreign tourists and the elderly people to take taxis more freely. He added:
"While sanctioning the new fare schemes, we urge the taxi operators to improve routine manners to handle customers for shorter distances."
The way the current scheme applies the initial base fare, for instance, of 730 yen rises 90 yen for each additional 280m. According to the new scheme, the first 410 yen will go up by 80 yen for every additional 237m.
In a nutshell, you save roughly up to 1.7 km, average at 2 km or so, save and lose out from 2km to 6.5km and definitely lose out over 6.5km and thereafter.
So, there. Watch out, folks. Be sure to figure out how far you are going before you beckon a taxi. (Nathan Shiga)