Paris-Charles de Gaulle airport announced new taxi rules after an unregistered and illegal acb driver charged a Thai tourist couple 247 euros ($283) for a trip from the airport to the city center.
Under the Taxi Officiel Aéroport, or Official Airport Taxi program, around 40 drivers at Charles de Gaulle will wear numbered blue vests so they can be easily identified by new arrivals at the country’s largest hub (and Europe’s second).
“Catching illegal taxi drivers is a top priority for public safety,” Paris police chief Michel Delpuech said. “Taxi service is part of hospitality and we must not downplay its dire impact”.
The new scheme will run daily from 5am to 11pm, with official taxis arriving at a particularly easy-to-find location.
French officials launched an investigation after two Thai tourists were overcharged for a 30-mile taxi ride from Charles de Gaulle airport to central Paris. A video of the incident shows the driver yelling at the couple in English: “Paris taxis are expensive…you pay me.”
According to the flat-rate system introduced for official taxis picking up at the airport of the French capital, the journey should cost 55 Euros. The couple is willing to pay 200 euros if the driver opens the door to let them out. “You’re crazy,” he yelled.
After the video went viral on YouTube, the identity of the driver was sentenced to eight months in jail last month after being found guilty of fraud and extortion involving threats.