Paris has announced a new taxi scheme to prevent tourists from being overcharged by scams and fake drivers. Tourists travelling from Charles de Gaulle Airport just outside of the city will be able to use regulated taxis when travelling to the centre. Called the Taxi Officiel Aéroport, they will wait at taxi ranks by the airport between 5am and 11pm every day. The new taxis have been announced following a video which went viral which saw two tourists being scammed by a fake taxi.
The couple, originally from Thailand, were charged €247 after the driver aggressively demanded the large payment.
Despite the couple filming the exchange, they eventually paid €200 to be allowed out of the vehicle after becoming frightened.
An investigation was launched by the specialist taxi police in the city after the driver was found to be fake.
The new taxis will be recognised with drivers wearing blue vests, with approximately 40 drivers part of the new scheme.
Paris police chief Michel Delpuech told The Local: “The hunt for illegal taxi drivers is a public safety priority.”
It follows a surge in taxi scams which has seen an increase from 243 in 2016 to 918 drivers stopped by police in 2018.
A new law in 2016 was introduced which means taxis cannot charge more than €55 to travel to the centre of Paris.
This is if travelling to the Left Bank of the city; it is up to €50 if travelling to the Right Bank.
For any passengers worried about falling victim to a scam, they are advised to reserve a taxi with an official company such as Chauffeur Privé or to use ride-sharing apps.
Hotel scams are also on the rise in Paris, according to the latest travel warning.
Tourists have been warned about criminals targeting hotels popular with foreign visitors by mingling in with large groups of tours checking in.
They then target the belongings and luggage of tourists when their attention is elsewhere
A spate of criminal gangs have also been using fake names to check in before removing the magnetic locks on hotel room doors.
This enables them to break in without getting caught and stealing anything from inside.
Paris deployed an extra 5,000 police officers during the summer months in a bid to crackdown on petty crime.
Published at Thu, 27 Dec 2018 11:42:00 +0000