Taxi drivers dress code

Just found this story in the news about taxi driver’s dress code in Malaysia … it could set an example for Taipei’s taxi drivers …

[quote]Malaysia declares fashion war on taxi slobs
4:45PM Monday September 03, 2007

KUALA LUMPUR - Malaysia is cracking down on shabbily dressed taxi-drivers, fining them for not tucking in their shirts or for wearing shoes of the wrong colour.

Malaysia’s lowly paid tax-drivers are supposed to wear white shirts, dark trousers and black shoes, but in reality passengers are happy if they can just persuade them to use the meter.

But the Commercial Vehicle Licensing Board is out to make a fashion statement, the Star newspaper said on Monday, quoting its chairman as saying drivers had to present a professional image.

Taxi-drivers have been fined 100-300 ringgit ($42-$125) - or up to three days’ average wages - for wearing an off-white shirt or getting behind the wheel without socks, angering the drivers and reducing one of them to tears, the paper added.

“I actually saw a taxi-driver crying over having to pay a fine of 200 ringgit when I was at the (licensing board’s) office recently,” Abdul Jalil Maarof, president of the Klang Valley Taxi Owners Association, told the Star.[/quote]

I don’t really care about introducing a dress code here, more important to me would be if they were to fine them for driving like maniacs. In fact many of them should have their license withdrawn.

Taxis in KL are dirt cheap if they use the meter (as they are required by law), so the income is indeed very low. As such putting more burden on them is actually somewhat unfair.

There are actually many drivers in KL/Malaysia that refuse to go by meter as the article already mentioned or those that change the tires to smaller ones (after inspection of course) so that the meter runs faster, or taking the “scenic route” rather than the fastest/shortest one.
Said the cabby waiting in front of the club to me after I refused his “offer” for asking around ten times of what the metered fare would cost: “If you can spend that much money in there you can also pay me more”. There was no point to argue that inside the prices are fixed just as the meter prices are, so I went around the corner and flagged down a passing cab that drove me by meter.
That being said there are also lot’s of nice and honest drivers in KL, some have refused to keep small change / tips when offered, or the one who had already a passenger and still gave me a lift during the morning rush hour when it was hard to get a cab (for which I made a contribution to the fare).

binlang stains on the shirtfront should be mandatory.

KL cabs are ludicrously under-priced, by the meter. To their credit, I’ve only had them refuse to use the meter when traffic is really tied up, and the ‘jam rate’ on the meter is really low.
All the cabbies I saw there were wearing the uniform white shirts. Who care what color pants/socks/shoes they wear when the drivers are reasonably courteous both to their passengers and other road users? For all I care, Taiwan cabbies could drive dressed only in tattoos if they’d step away from their role as the #1 menace to public safety.