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Athens hoteliers want crackdown on Greek taxi drivers

Horeca

The Athens hotel association on Friday urged the Greek government to take measures in order to prevent the country’s taxi drivers from ripping off foreign tourists. Visible signs listing indicative prices for taxi rides from Greece’s airports and harbours to the city centre and archaeological sites should be installed at terminals, the hoteliers said in a newsletter issued Friday.

‘Tourists’ complaints are increasing … Problems focus on the cars’ bad appearance and exaggerated charges on certain fares’, the Greater Athens Hotel Association (EXA) said in a press release.The signs should also feature the telephone number of the tourist police, EXA said.

EXA went public with their demand after their request to put up the signs was turned down by Greece’s transport ministry.The ministry said putting up signs was not feasible and that fares for each distance are written on taxi meters in a letter to EXA, a copy of which was obtained by AFP.

‘It’s obvious that the transport ministry has heard nothing about tourists’ complaints of being the object of exploitation by certain taxi drivers’, said EXA.Greece’s taxis are among the cheapest in Europe but are also known for their poor service. Cabbies often smoke, charge extra for turning air conditioners on, refuse to take passengers heading to directions they do not like, double up on clients and also leave them to load their own luggage in and out of the trunk.

Last week, Greece’s taxi owners and drivers held a 48-hour strike against a law obliging them to issue detailed receipts to passengers ahead of the 2004 Athens Olympics.

‘Tourists’ complaints are increasing … Problems focus on the cars’ bad appearance and exaggerated charges on certain fares’, the Greater Athens Hotel Association (EXA) said in a press release.The signs should also feature the telephone number of the tourist police, EXA said.

EXA went public with their demand after their request to put up the signs was turned down by Greece’s transport ministry.The ministry said putting up signs was not feasible and that fares for each distance are written on taxi meters in a letter to EXA, a copy of which was obtained by AFP.

‘It’s obvious that the transport ministry has heard nothing about tourists’ complaints of being the object of exploitation by certain taxi drivers’, said EXA.Greece’s taxis are among the cheapest in Europe but are also known for their poor service. Cabbies often smoke, charge extra for turning air conditioners on, refuse to take passengers heading to directions they do not like, double up on clients and also leave them to load their own luggage in and out of the trunk.

Last week, Greece’s taxi owners and drivers held a 48-hour strike against a law obliging them to issue detailed receipts to passengers ahead of the 2004 Athens Olympics.

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