Baht Buses and Motorbike taxis will be under scrutiny again
Col. Popanan Luangpanuwat, deputy commander of Military Circle 14 focuses on them in the coming months.
Last year, taxis, baht buses and motorbike taxis were instructed by the military to stop illegally parking, particularly in the red and white prohibited zones. However, it appears this request has not been effective enough, as taxis continue to park in these areas. The biggest problem area is outside on Beach Road, in front of Central Festival Pattaya Beach and Royal Garden Plaza. These areas are prime parking areas for taxis hoping to find customers who have just finished shopping. But all is not as it seems. One of the major concerns is the amount of un-registered taxis that also park in these areas looking for customers.
Col. Popanan Luangpanuwat has said that in the near future, registered taxis will be painted blue and white to clearly identify that these operators are operating from fully registered vehicles. Concerns are overcharging customers as well as personal safety. Black-plate taxis and private pickup trucks often can be seen in these areas as well as across town, and Government officials discourage using their services.
Another aspect of the transport system here in Pattaya that could do with an overhaul, is that of the Baht buses. So many people come here, unaware of how the system works and how much they should pay for using the bus. The moment you see the passenger window wind down and the unsuspecting tourist ask that fatal question, how much, you know they are about to pay a significantly higher price than the 10฿ they should pay. Another issues is knowing what route the bus will follow. Is the bus on the Beach Road/Second road loop or will it turn off to head up Pattaya Klang or towards Naklua? Identification stickers or even colours would make life so much easier for all concerned.
Remember, if you do use the bus system, unless you head off to Jomtien from Pattaya, or past Soi 14 in Naklua, you should only pay the standard 10฿ fee. For longer journeys you will be expected to pay 20฿, which when you consider how far you have travelled, is incredibly cheap.
National Council for Peace along with local Police will enforce Col. Popanan Luangpanuwat’s directive and remove the vehicles parking illegally.