Basic fare to increase from Feb., 3,000 late-night taxis to be added Wednesday
The basic taxi fare in Seoul will be raised to 4,800 won ($3.34), up 1,000 won from the current price, according to the Seoul Metropolitan Government on Tuesday.
The increase, which is the first in four years, will be applied from Feb. 1 next year.
The basic distance, or distance traveled before the fare increases, will be decreased to 1.6 kilometers (0.99 miles) from the current 2 kilometers.
The standard fare will then increase 100 won per 131 meters (0.08 miles) traveled, a decrease from the current 132 meters.
Starting December, the time frame for the premium late night taxi fare will be expanded from 10 p.m. to 4 a.m. from the current midnight to 4 a.m.
The basic fare and standard fare between 11 p.m. and 2 a.m. will increase by 40 percent. During the remainder of the late night time frame the fares increase by 20 percent compared to normal operating hours.
Meanwhile, around 3,000 late-night taxis will be added to the roads of Seoul starting Wednesday night, according to the Ministry of Land Infrastructure and Transport on Tuesday.
Private late-night taxi drivers in Seoul will work on shifts from 10 p.m. until 3 a.m. the next day as a part of the city government’s plan to relieve the worsening taxi shortage during late-night hours.
Taxi drivers on the late shift will work on different days, determined by the last number of their license plate.
The Seoul Private Taxi Association (SPTA) will operate the late-night shift until the end of the year. It expects the overall number of drivers will increase after fees are raised.
Before the new shift system begins Wednesday night, Minister of Land, Infrastructure and Transport Won Hee-ryong is expected to visit the office of the SPTA to check on the operations and encourage taxi drivers. It is also expected that the minister will promise to offer incentives for those who participate in the new system.
BY CHO JUNG-WOO [email@example.com]