This is the story of the Gyspy Cab, our one and only dodgy situation during 5 weeks in Mexico.
So, after leaving Garibaldi Plaza, we just missed the last train. The doors literally closed right in front of us. In Mexico City, you should never take a random cab, you always book or go to an official rank, or you run the risk of getting one of the many, many gypsy cabs. These look just like normal taxis, but are not official in any way, and will, at the very least, try to rip you off. But after a week up North, where it was relatively safe and you can take any taxi off the street, we simply had left our guard down.
When we walked out of the station, there was a line of Taxis, and a few cops walking around, so we didn’t hesitate. The taxi ride from Garibaldi Plaza to our area should take about 5min and cost around 30 Pesos. We agreed on 50 Pesos, a little high but its night so OK. Straight off, he was driving like crazy. Changing lanes, and speeding down a freeway we didn’t need to be on. We quickly realised something was wrong, and began talking about our situation in Japanese, in case the driver spoke English.
Jon checked his phone’s GPS and it showed we were now very far from our destination, and where we started. I asked numerous times to confirm where we were going. Eventually we showed him the map on the phone and insisted he take us to our place. He stopped the car at a random station and pointed to it as if to say “we are here”. The name didn’t sound anything like the station we asked for. We were very insistent at this point, and he angrily turned the car around. We could tell we were already in crack-town, hookers on every corner and dodgy establishments!
We eventually got to our station, where he asked for 150 pesos! Not the agreed 50. Jon was already out of the taxi so I just gave him the 50 and got out. The taxi then started reversing! So we just bolted down the road, between some buses, and into our side street.
He probably wanted to hustle us down and the end result could have been much, much worse, but luckily we caught on to him quickly and weren’t having any of it!
Just goes to show you can never let your guard down!
And to think, all that was over $11 hahahaha
*Note: The picture above is NOT the taxi we got in. Ours wasn’t a beetle, it looked just like the normal taxis.