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Taxi Drivers and Restaurant Ripoffs in Prague

Taxi Drivers and Restaurant Ripoffs in Prague

Old Dec 9th, 2001, 12:24 PM
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Taxi Drivers and Restaurant Ripoffs in Prague

Can anyone offer any suggestions on dealing with overcharging and outright ripoffs by taxi drivers and restaurants. Prague is portrayed as a wonderful place to visit but it seems that the one drawback to this wonderful city is the terrible reputations of the taxi drivers and mystery charges on a restaurant bill. Does anyone have any comments or suggestions on how to remidy this. Thanks.
Old Dec 9th, 2001, 01:14 PM
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After being taken a couple of times on our first trip there, last year I had asked the hotel how much the fare should be from the train station. I wrote that on a piece of paper and when the first taxi driver in line pulled up, I showed him the address and the amount. He said no, but the second driver agreed so we went with him. The only other times we took a taxi, I had the hotel write out what the fare should be and got an OK before getting in. There was something else written on the note and I would love to know what it was. The girl at the desk who wrote it out just laughed and said it was a sort of threat in case they didn't treat us right. Also we were instructed to make a big deal of writing down the driver's number off his license when we got into the cab. I hate doing all this, but it did seem like it worked. I never had any problems that I was aware of with restaurants. I have had friends who were charged as much as $50 for a $5 taxi ride.
Old Dec 9th, 2001, 06:38 PM
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There are a couple of reliable taxis in Prague, I cannot remmember now the names but they are listed in
the LOnely Plantet guide for sure.
You should take ONLY those. THe hotel taxis will not be the worst but they will be also overpriced. THe ones in the street will be a ripoff.
We asked carried the number of the taxi company and asked waiters after dinner to call one for us, tipping him extra or asked the rest. cahier. We asked a lot of people whenever possible to call the taxis for us, but also called ourselves sometimes,
providing a simple name like Mary , a simple address , and soon enough a taxi would show.
The rest. were mostly ok, only thing they charge for everything extra, if yo do not wish to pay let us say for peanuts with your beer, send them back with a smile. The waiter may be will not smile but, who cares?

In all Prague is beautiful and you will have no problem, taxis are unexpensive, have change to pay them in case they do not have change.
Old Dec 9th, 2001, 06:44 PM
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Regarding restaurants, you will find that most have a service charge, whether you eat the peanuts or not. This ranges from 20 - 30 crowns per person. I read on a menu in a small restaurant that service charge was for condiments (salt, pepper, ketchup, A-1 Sauce, etc.), napkins, and flatware. The prices are so inexpensive that an extra 50 to 75 cents means nothing.
Old Dec 10th, 2001, 11:58 AM
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I have never had a problem with either. As for restaurant, I am not sure what you're referring to but it sounds like something done to tourists in tourist restaurants, which I didn't frequent much (except for one brasserie in Old town sq, but I only had beer there). I didn't have any mystery charges, if I did, I'd ask what they were for and either pay them or not. I didn't do anything special for cab, either, and was not ripped off at all--I used an airport private car service that is available walk-up at the airport. I did not negotiate or threaten--however, I did study Czech 6 mo before going and spoke to them in Czech at the airport and restaurants (really, I think the fact that I didn't go to tourist places helped on that one). There is a funny legitimate taxi company in Prague called "Profit" ha ha ha. Well, I didn't use them, talk about bad PR. Another is AA or AAA, I forget. I took the hotel's car service back to airport for a flat rate (500CK, as I recall), that was nice as I liked my hotel and trusted them. I had paid just slightly more than that coming into town on my own when I didn't do anything special. My hotel did offer to send a driver for me upon arrival, and that would be a good way to go, also, I declined as I think I wasn't quite sure when I'd get there. Believe me, Prague is a dream compared to some places I've been (3rd world countries in middle East) regarding getting ripped off.
Old Dec 11th, 2001, 08:49 AM
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The rule we used is to never get into a cab without a telephone number on the door. We never had a problem with this, but we once rushed into a cab without a phone number on the door and we were charged twice what we knew was the correct charge. The best is to get a cab at your hotel. Be careful at the airport or train station of the people who rush over to you. Best to look for the phone # on the door.
Old Dec 14th, 2001, 01:40 PM
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Yes Prague does have a bad rep for this. We always negotiated the fare for our taxi before we got in and usually taxis were grouped together so if one was extortionist we moved on to the next. As for restaurants. We just reviewed the bill. A few times they would just hand us a slip of paper with one number and we played dumb and said we needed an itemized check for expense reports. Otherwise we always would point out the error and say what a great meal we had.
Old Dec 14th, 2001, 07:19 PM
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We were ripped off by a taxi in Prague also. It was only once the entire time we were there and it was becuase we were in a rush. The general rule is quote an amount before you start your ride and watch the meter, make sure it's going while you're in the car. Also the best taxis we got were from the company that rented us our Apt. (Tom's Apts. - Don't you just love the name?). By the way they have wonderful apts. at great rates. I found them on the web. As far as restaurants, stay off the beaten path just as you would do in any large city - except for reputable ones. You can usually get that info from the hotel or apt you stay at.
Old Dec 15th, 2001, 06:21 AM
Brian in Atlanta
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Cheerie, I'm confused. What's the purpose of watching the meter if you've already set a price?
Old Dec 15th, 2001, 08:04 AM
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Old Dec 15th, 2001, 08:53 AM
Dan H
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Anyone who is going to prague i can suggest to you a great hotel. Walking distance to most all the city.
Also i can send you email address of a pick up service and you can use them for any taxi need.
I use them all the time and they are very well know at the hotel.
I use them all the time when i go to prague. I do not use the taxi and you do not need the taxi once at the hotel.
I go about 2 or 3 times a year. They know me at the hotel and you can use my name when talking to the people there or emailing the airport pick up people.
Feel free to send me email or ask me any question. I know prague well. LOVE IT>
I just came back and am going back again in Jan possibly.
email me at [email protected]
no problem seriously.

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