Kuala Lumpur Taxis

I’ve been staying in the downtown area of Kuala Lumpur – near KLCC.  To get around the central area I have been using taxis.  This has led to a lot of annoyance and stress.  I have adjusted my mindset to accept that I will be ripped off by every taxi driver, but I find it offensive when they try to gouge me in extreme ways.

For example… I feel that 10 ringgit is already a high price to get around the central area.  If the taxis were to use the meter, it would probably only cost 5 RM – 8 RM to get anywhere downtown.  Typically the drivers will refuse to use the meter and instead throw out the price of 20 RM.  After a bit of negotiation (and not wanting to deal with too much time loss / hassle), I end up settling for 10 RM.

Last night, while trying to make my way back from a wedding, a taxi driver quoted 25 RM as the price to get me from Pavilion to Pacific Regency.  Their reason?  “Traffic”.” At 1 in the morning?!?  Wrong.  So moved on to a different driver… who gave me the price of 40 RM.  WHAT!!  That was just offensive and over-the-top.

I ended up finding a taxi for 15 RM.

Anyway, I chatted with a taxi driver who provided some interesting info (whether it is true or not I have no idea):

  • The flagdown fee is 2 RM – this has not changed in 20 years
  • When going to the budget airport terminal or KLIA, a fair price should be 60 RM – 70 RM
  • Taxis are not allowed to pick up passengers from the airport and take them to the city so they have to come back to the city empty
  • The government mandates that taxis should use the meter.  But no government officials use taxis so this is not enforced.

In conclusion, every time I get in a taxi in Kuala Lumpur, I feel like I am voluntarily #!$@-ing myself in the ass.

(Written on the HP Mini 1000 at Kuala Lumpur’s Budget Terminal – which honestly may be the worst designed airport terminal I have ever been to. Perhaps a blog entry about that…)

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4 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by corra on February 24, 2009 at 12:51 pm

    What he said were true.


  2. Posted by Anonymous on February 25, 2009 at 4:01 am

    Very true indeed


  3. How frustrating


  4. i’m a malaysian, but i never like kuala lumpur. i don’t feel like i’m in malaysia there, feels more like as if i’m indonesia. there are better places in malaysia like malacca and penang. anyway, if you’re ever in kl, try going to subang area or petaling jaya area.. it’s a more malaysian area in selangor.


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