One netizen, Amo Jov, posted on Facebook a picture of the taxi, together with his unpleasant experience.
He said that on Sunday (1 March), he boarded a private car, whose driver claimed to be from Uber. The driver used an iPhone app to record the meter fare.
The base fare was S$3.90, with an additional S$070 per kilometre.
Amo Jov had boarded the taxi with his wife and children, and they were heading for Woodlands.
But when the car was on the highway, he noticed the fare shoot up to some S$50. He then asked the driver to stop the vehicle. The driver stopped at Yio Chu Kang Road, and the fare at the time was S$97.
Amo Jo said he paid the fare without any confrontation as he was afraid that any dispute might spark the driver to hurt his family.
It’s highly likely that the driver could simply be riding on Uber’s name to lend legitimacy to the pirate taxi scam.
The transport company doesn’t allow drivers who sign up with it to drive around and solicit for fares.
Rather, riders and drivers “hook up” over the Uber website or mobile application.
It’s pricing is also vastly different from the errant driver’s quote.
A similar trip using a Singapore taxi booked through Uber would also come up to a maximum of roughly S$25.
Apparently, Amo Jo isn’t the only person who’s been scammed by this ba wang che (“pirate taxi” in Mandarin).
At least one other person claims to have been tricked.
“Beware guys, do not aboard this “private taxi.
On 1st of March 2015, i was with my family (wife, 3 years old daughter & a newborn son) trying to hail a taxi at beach road area when this particular car stop by.
The man in a car approached me & asked where am i going. So i told him i’m heading to woodlands. Immediately, He told me to aboard. I thought it was some private taxi as when i aboard, he used some iphone apps to record the meter fare.
He then explain his from uber company & told us to search the net if we dont believe after that he then told us the meter fare was $3.90 upon boarding & $0.70 per km.
He asked us if we’re fine with it. He claim that they(uber company) is slightly more expensive than normal taxi. But while i was trying to do some research about this company to roughly know how much we need to pay. In less than 30 mins of ride, i saw his meter shoot up to $50++. We were already on the highway.
So i told him to alight us nearby where he can stop. Instead he stopped at some ulu destination around yio chu kang & told us to paid $97. Its less than 3 mins, the meter fare increase $40++.
When i asked him why is the fare so expensive, he claimed that he did inform us that it $8/km.
Who on earth will be so stupid, to allow someone to charge at $8/km. I didnt want to put my wife & kids in any danger as i’m afraid if i confront him longer & not pay him, he might do anything to harm them, i had no choice but to pay him the $97.”