Seoul, Korea, 4 January 2007 – Calling a taxi in Seoul will get easier thanks to a new system which will financially support taxis that use a satellite-based positioning system, under a city government proposal. The global positioning system will allow customers to get taxis in a shorter period of time because the system will spot the nearest available cab, Seoul City officials said.
The current call taxi system enables the taxi drivers to select the customers, which usually takes more time especially when the customer’s destination is nearby, because the taxi driver doesn’t want to pick up a small fare.
City officials said that they plan to announce the necessary requirements the taxi companies have to meet in order to apply for the financial support and then they will select some taxi companies in the first half of this year, said Kim Se-gyo, an official at the Taxi and Logistics Division of the city government.
Kim said the city expects to support at least 4,000 taxis starting as early as the latter half of this year, but that number is likely to change since it won’t cover the whole city. “Call taxis have been operating in the city since 1994, but the service was not satisfactory for many. With the new system, customers will be able to enjoy a safer and more convenient ride and we believe this may reduce the number of people driving their own vehicles,” said Kim Hyon-sik, director of the Taxi and Logistics Division.