Friday, March 28, 2008

Taxi Scam at Kuala Lumpur International Airport

I have just blogged about Malaysian Style last week and on item 3, it was stated as follow:-

Lesson 3
You have no friends in Malaysia (yet) and you decide to take a cab from the airport. You'll soon realize that the one-way taxi fare is more expensive than a night's stay at most decent hotels.(this is still prevalent even though the government has said it again and again that illegal cabs wouldn't surface again)

In the newspapers lately, various complaints have been made known and are as follows:-

RM160 for taxi fare from KLIA to KL
I RECENTLY received guests from Russia who were here for the first time and immediately felt both embarrassed and angry that they had to fork out RM160 for a so called budget taxi coupon at KLIA.

I had already text them to ask for a budget taxi coupon, which they did. But somehow, my guests had to fork out RM160 for the one way trip from KLIA to Setapak, Kuala Lumpur.

In the morning traffic rush hour the following day, my guests took a cab to KLCC and it cost them RM6 because the honest taxi driver used the meter. But returning from KLCC to Setapak, they had to pay RM40 as no taxi wanted to use the meter.

This problem has been around for many years and perhaps hundreds of visitors have been cheated by taxi drivers. Why aren't the authorities able to stop this embarrassing situation at KLCC?

Don’t suspend just the licences of taxi drivers; charge them in court and blacklist them permanently.


Unfair ploy to upgrade taxi at LCCT
AS A frequent traveller on AirAsia, I use the taxi service at LCCT often. I always travel from LCCT to the same place, and always with two passengers on board. Therefore, I know the exact fare that I should be charged, which is RM60.80.

That was not the case on March 21 when I wanted to buy a ticket to my usual destination, and I was told that my fare was more than RM90! When I asked the counter staff on this, they said that my luggage might be too big to fit into the Budget Taxi, and that they were charging me for the Premier Taxi.

I told them that we only had two bags and there were only two of us on board. Even if my luggage couldn’t fit into the boot, it could’ve been placed in the front seat or between the two passengers in the back seat.

After they checked the sizes of our bags and that they would fit, they let us buy the Budget Taxi ticket.

I felt that we were being forced to “upgrade” our taxi without a valid reason. The fare is RM30 higher.

We fought our case since we knew how much we should be charged. What about the others who don't know?


Shame on LCCT taxi company
ON March 20, the attendant at the LCCT taxi counter refused to sell me a budget taxi coupon on the excuse that my suitcase was too big and the queue long.

I insisted on budget taxi because there were only my daughter and me sharing one suitcase and we are both quite skinny. No need to use a chopper to kill a fly, right? I also told her that queuing was my problem, not hers.

But she insisted we took a premier taxi costing over RM90 to Kuala Lumpur. On learning that both taxi counters belong to the same company, we took the bus to KL Sentral and from there, a budget taxi – a Proton Saga, same as those in LCCT – to hotel. It was a comfortable ride.

The total cost? RM30, plus a little more time. Shame on you LCCT taxi company!


My own experience - I don't opt for the premier taxi at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) when I come back from overseas trip. I travel alone usually so the budget taxi is just nice for me. BUT!

Yeah big BUT .............. if you were not careful with the girls at the airport taxi counter just after the customs checkpoint at the arrival door, you could be duped. The company managing the airport taxi may sue me for putting this up but I'm only highlighting what happened to me just like those complainants that wrote to Star newspaper.

Each time when you approach the counter, they would wish you and then ask for your destination. For sure they would tell you the price of the premier taxi first. If you were not careful and pay for it and subsequently boarded that taxi, there goes your money. You would have thought that was the only taxi available in the airport not knowing that budget taxis were available too.

If you were used to their first offer, you could answer back - "please give me the budget taxi". Without questioning and haggling you any further, they would print out the budget taxi coupon, you pay for it and off you go.

From what I witness on many occasions, when a foreigner approaches the airport taxi counter, the girls at the counter would definitely sound very sweet and say "Afternoon sir, where is your destination please".

Foreigner would respond "Hotel so and so at Kuala Lumpur". Straightaway the counter girl would print out a ticket for the premier taxi without informing the foreigner of the budget taxi option. You call this a sales gimmick or keeping quiet on options or plain cheating or Caveat Emptor?

The operator could say that "Well, the customers never ask any questions or for any other cheaper options".

Where are the authorities? Which authority in the first place? Well, at this point various authority would be passing the buck here and there. All this are happening right at the first step (for the foreigner) into our country.

Related post:-
* Malaysian Style
Tags: Malaysian Style, Taxi, Cab, Airport Taxi Scam, Airport Taxi, Airport Limo, Kuala Lumpur International Airport, KLIA, LCCT, Disputes



Blogger Emy said...

Hello!My family is going to visit K.L. first week of May, I just want to know if the budget taxi will allow 2 adults and 2 children passengers, if not, can we take the bus to K.L. central with our luggages? thank you in advance

18 April, 2008 20:57  
Blogger Johnny Ong said...

yes, the budget taxi cld fit in 2 adults and 2 kids.

BUT, yeah there's a but .... yr luggages cld be an issue. u see, its up to their judgement. i have already heard of cases where they find that yr luggages are too big and hence u need a premier taxi.

if its those easy and light shoulder carried bags, put it on yr legs where u sit in the taxi, the big ones cld go into the boot.

its up to u to argue. lemme know yr experience if it was a rough one then i'll put it up here. hopefully i dont get to hear from u then ... hehe

19 April, 2008 01:10  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Johnny,
For those paying for the premier taxis, will they end up in the same queue as those who opted for the budget taxis?

12 August, 2008 16:34  
Blogger Johnny Ong said...

anonymous - different lines for different categories

12 August, 2008 21:14  
Blogger Vonnie said...

thanks so much for posting this.
so is it better to take taxi or train?

21 January, 2009 23:25  
Blogger Johnny Ong said...

at the main airport terminal, once u have walk past the baggage collection and customs, there will be an official taxi counter. obtain yr taxi coupon there.

as long as u state yr destination and check yr coupon once given by the counter person, u shld be ok.

i travel a lot and i have not faced a single problem before

21 January, 2009 23:50  
Anonymous Happyrainz said...

Hi Johnny,

I am wondering would the budget taxi be able to take in 4 adults? We do not have any luggages. Only handcarry bags.

When i purchase the budget coupon, could i tell them i only got 3 pax and make them sell me the budget coupon. Would the taxi driver question or refuse to pick us up if he sees 4 pax after that?

Are there any additional charges that i have to pay the taxi driver after that?

Which taxi company you took for only $60.80?

So sorry for so many questions because this is my first time taking plane to KL airport. Normally, i will take coach buses. :)

Thanks for your great advices!

05 February, 2009 02:21  
Blogger Johnny Ong said...

happyrainz - 4 adults shld fit in nicely into a budget or premier taxi. only thing is the handcarry bags ...... pray that it fits into the same taxi's boot as well haha, otherwise u fellas may need another taxi.

it's always good to know right at the beginning on whether 4 cld ride in the same taxi. check with the counter people.

the payment for taxi is done one-off at the taxi counter. no further payments are required (not unless the taxi driver tries to be funny halfway thru the journey).

on the rate of RM60.80 - it was not me but by the person who wrote into the newspaper to complain.

05 February, 2009 11:57  
Anonymous Bell said...


I just happen to be googling taxis from LCCT to KL and found your blogspot.

Upon reading, it stated that the counter girl would automatically offer the premier taxi fare/coupon, once we state our destination. Can we just tell them "Hotel so and so at so so, KL, Budget taxi coupon please"? so not even bother to wait for them to print out a coupon first, just in case its for the premier one?

There will only be 2 people with normal medium sized luggage. So that should be ok?

02 April, 2009 20:04  
Blogger Johnny Ong said...

bell - the counter girl may not offer premier taxis all the time but u just have to be alert

yes, u can tell the counter girl way in advance of what u want. that's yr right.

two person's luggages shld be good.

when i travel, i always have 2 luggages too and sometimes with a big box too. it all fits into a taxi boot

05 April, 2009 16:31  

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