Kathmandu, January 2, 2016:Â Three taxi cabs were fitted with meters that print out receipts on Sunday, marking the formal inauguration of the taxi receipt system in Nepal.
From now on, taxi drivers will have to provide a receipt to their passengers at the end of the journey. The slip contains details about the distance travelled, the fare and the vehicleâ€™s registration number. The Nepal Bureau of Standards and Metrology (NBSM) had issued a deadline to all taxis operating in the Kathmandu Valley that they should install the new meter from Sunday.
NBSM Director General Bishwo Babu Pudasaini said that three taxi operators had installed new meters equipped with the billing system. â€œAround 25-30 cab drivers had visited the NBSM office to buy the new meters, but they returned saying that they didnâ€™t enough money on them,â€ he said.
As per the NBSM, the new taxi meters cost Rs5,000-Rs8,000 each. â€œCab drivers do not have to pay any additional charge, just the cost of the meter,â€ Pudasaini said. According to him, they have planned to install new meters on 500 taxis weekly. The NBSM had planned to launch the taxi receipt system as a pilot project on December 5, making it mandatory for cabs renewing their meters to install the new equipment.
On December 20, the NBSM issued a public notice saying that all taxis would have to install the receipt system, and published a timetable based on their registration numbers.
Tax cabs with numbers Ba2Ja 3000 to Ba2Ja 3200 have been told to install the receipt printing system from January 1-7. The regulator has given a deadline of July 22 for all taxis in the Valley.
Pudasaini said they expected all taxis to install the new machine within the time limit.
The receipt system is also expected to prevent cases of taxi drivers misbehaving with passengers or scamming them by tampering with the meter.
Travellers often find themselves at the mercy of cabbies at locations such as hospitals, bus parks and airports where they have no choice but to take a taxi.
The receipt system is also expected to prevent cab drivers from overcharging travellersÂ citing shortage of publicÂ vehicles during festivals and Nepal bandas.