Go Back  FlyerTalk Forums > Destinations > Asia > China
Reload this Page >

Official Taxi vs "Black Taxi" vs DIdi?

Official Taxi vs "Black Taxi" vs DIdi?

Old Dec 25, 18, 7:33 pm
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Programs: Aeroplan SE AND 1MM, HHonors Gold, Marriott Rewards Gold, Fairmont President Club Platinum
Posts: 9,001
Official Taxi vs "Black Taxi" vs DIdi?

How does one make sure that one is not taking the "black taxi"? Are there letters or numbers on license plates whereby one can tell the difference between the 3?

I understand that "didi" is the local Chinese version of "uber" now that the latter left China.

How does didi compare with official taxis?

How does one hail a "didi" driver - similar to an "uber" driver? Is there a English language app for "didi".

Presumably none of the 3 transportation options drivers accept credit cards? So if we do not have Chinese currency on hand, we would be in trouble?
FlyerGoldII is offline  
Old Dec 25, 18, 8:24 pm
  #2  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Shanghai
Posts: 30,221
Didi is the most popular car service company in China, though a few others are starting to make a pretty big dent in the market. You can download the app (Chinese or English) and link your credit card to it. You can also use didi inside of WeChat, in case you don't want too many apps. I use didi or similar about 80% of the time, and taxis the rest of the time. Black taxis are really easy to spot....pretty much a non issue.
moondog is online now  
Old Dec 26, 18, 1:36 am
  #3  
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: PEK and BOS
Programs: BA - Blue
Posts: 3,682
Didi is "hailed" via APP just like Uber, and needs either Wechat or a dedicated app. English language interface available, and can link to foreign CC. Can also use to hail conventional taxi.

Black cabs are informal taxis, and can't be hailed...you flag them down on the street. I suspect a lot of them are now Didi drivers! We still see our regulars in the neighbourhood, but don't tend to call on them anymore...but since they are around, presumably they still have plenty of clientele! I have used "black cabs" many, many times without issue: the only critical piece of advice is that it's essential to negotiate and agree a price upfront. For Didi, it's calculated automatically, so that's not an issue.

tb
trueblu is offline  
Old Dec 26, 18, 6:04 am
  #4  
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: China and Canada
Posts: 1,783
With Didi, I suspect that black taxis are rare as most are on Didi. None of these are to be confused with scammers approaching you at the airport as they most in many countries and should be ignored.
JPDM is offline  
Old Jan 2, 19, 9:06 am
  #5  
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Trenton NJ
Programs: UA Gold MM, AA Plat, Honors Silver, Marriott Plat, IHG Plat, Wyndham Plat, National Exec, Hertz 5*
Posts: 1,755
I was warned about X plated taxis while I was in China having their meters run faster than the regular cabs. Is this still the case?
Bluehen1 is offline  
Old Jan 9, 19, 8:26 pm
  #6  
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: NYC
Programs: Marriot Am, MU Pt
Posts: 3,093
Originally Posted by Bluehen1 View Post
I was warned about X plated taxis while I was in China having their meters run faster than the regular cabs. Is this still the case?
What do you mean X plated?
alphaod is offline  
Old Jan 10, 19, 7:25 am
  #7  
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Trenton NJ
Programs: UA Gold MM, AA Plat, Honors Silver, Marriott Plat, IHG Plat, Wyndham Plat, National Exec, Hertz 5*
Posts: 1,755
Originally Posted by alphaod View Post
What do you mean X plated?
Chinese license plates all typically have a letter after the Chinese character designating the location. In Shanghai, the ones with an X were somewhat notorious, during the time I was there, for having meters that ran faster than the other cabs.
Bluehen1 is offline  
Old Jan 12, 19, 3:37 am
  #8  
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: PVG
Posts: 664
Originally Posted by Bluehen1 View Post
I was warned about X plated taxis while I was in China having their meters run faster than the regular cabs. Is this still the case?
The X plated taxis have an interesting history (apparently they were given out to ex-cons at the very beginning, but as truck plates which were later converted to taxi registrations) but these days they're managed just like other taxi plates so I personally haven't had any issues with them. I highly doubt any original ex-cons who got the initial truck registration would still be driving a taxi today.
tauphi is offline  
Old Jan 13, 19, 12:12 pm
  #9  
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: 42.1% in PDX , 49.9% in PVG & 8% in the air somewhere
Programs: Marriott Ambassador Elite, UA 1K, AS MVP GLD 75K
Posts: 733
Didi has option for both Taxi and private car drivers, you want a better car there are several options in the Ap. I went from using taxi to the private cars and found them 100% reliable, better car, better driver and more often than not cheaper too.

With some bad press in China with the private car options they responded and have several new security measures and I can vouch I feel safer in a China Didi hailed private car then Uber US car.
chipmaster is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread