A Guardian sub-editor overdosed on caffeine while writing the headline to a humdrum taxi-app story. How else to explain this? China's one-party rule has survived market reforms, the killing of students, Wukan, and Bo Xilai. But it currently quakes at its foundations because you damn people can't stop using Didi Dache and Kuaidi Dache.
If you ever run a scam, please note that overcharging by roughly 8,000 percent will probably get you caught. That's the sort of greed that's plain reckless.
In Shanghai last month, as reported on Sunday, a cab driver charged a Japanese passenger 2,300 yuan for a 4-km ride in Pudong. But there's a happy ending here, as Global Times reports:
A foreign couple's backseat passion in Shanghai on Sunday morning gave passengers of nearby cars a bit of a peep show they were not looking for, but obviously did not mind. Check out this collection of pictures from @frida1986 (an account that no longer exists). The woman reportedly sat on the man's lap and "moved her body up and down."
An international student with limited language skills arrives in an airport and is approached by a helpful-looking taxi driver. The student needs to get to a place 150 miles away. Sorry kid, no more buses, says the driver. But I can take you.
Great, the kid replies. How much?
Oh, only 1,000 RMB.
Sound familiar? Except this didn't happen in China...
For years, as the price of everything around us in Beijing increased, taxi fares remained unreasonably low, starting at 10 yuan ($1.63) and moving at a snail's pace when the vehicle was stalled (i.e. stuck in traffic). This has caused problems for drivers, especially during rush hour, and this, in turn, has caused problems for passengers, who have found it difficult to find open cabs during times of need.
Alright Beijing folks, taxi fuel surcharges are up to 3 yuan again, where they should have stayed after the April increase from 2 to 3 yuan. (The price went back to 2 yuan on June 18 due to a sharp decline in oil prices.) According to BJ News, gasoline prices are the main reason, again,... Read more »
This is the sort of story that you wish was merely an urban legend. Recently, a man in Beijing taking a cab from Wudaokou was jabbed by a hypodermic needle hidden, for reasons unknown, in the back pouch of the front seat, where magazines are kept. Apparently the syringe broke skin on his right knee. When he saw there was fluid inside the needle, he became very worried and had it examined at the Chaoyang District Disease Prevention and Control Center.
In Hong Kong, millions take the Peak Tram every year, making it one of Hong Kong Island's biggest tourist draws. And where there's tourists, there'll be vendors who try to capitalize. Unregistered taxi drivers, for instance.
I’m embarrassed to have gone so long without posting this, but last month, Chengdu tourism officials created a commercial promoting black-and-white “panda cabs” in London using Kate Middleton, Prince William, and the Queen impersonators, and the Daily Mail tells us, in its article yesterday, that Britons aren’t too happy about it. Is it because the... Read more »
Only two weeks ago, a reckless Chinese driver in Singapore plowed into a side of a taxi, killing both cab passengers and himself (GIF credit: Alicia). We now have more of the same. (And in case you needed a reminder — there’s a lot of the same.) On Shenzhen’s Binghai Road on Saturday around midnight, a... Read more »
I first encountered the following diagram — origins unknown* — two or three years ago, but considering it was revived as recently as a month ago — I noticed a bunch of friends passing it around on Facebook — it’s possible it’s been around even longer. And why not? Everything depicted is true, more or less:... Read more »
"What is it with people falling through the sidewalk in China?" asks Katie, who brought my attention to the above, which happened in Xi'an, Shaanxi province. Remember the woman in Beijing who was plunged into boiling water when the ground inexplicably gave out from under her feet? How can you not remember. Sidewalk. Walking. SUBMERGED BY SCALDING WATER. DISASTER. She would perish from her injuries, which we were told included her skin and flesh getting “almost separated.”
Starting tomorrow, taxis will charge 3 yuan instead of 2 yuan for distances over 3 kilometers. According to CNR, this regulation was approved by the Beijing Municipal Government in accordance with the National Development and Reform Commission’s increase in the price of refined oil to 600 yuan per ton on March 20. Before your eyes glaze over... Read more »