Orange taxis!

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When my friend from high school had a layover here in Korea two weeks ago (she's a flight attendant), I offered to meet her in the hotel where she was staying and go somewhere afterwards. My husband told me I had to take the subway and then the taxi to get to the hotel. I am quite comfortable now in taking the subway because I have a map with English translation for the names of the stations plus I just have follow the colors of the subway lines! However, I still feel uneasy talking to taxi drivers. You see, I've been here in Korea for almost a year but my nose is still bleeding when I talk to them. I feel like my Korean pronunciation really sucks that they refuse to talk to me. Just like when I was on my way to meet my friend. I caught one taxi and when I said where I was supposed to go, he's got this frown on his face that I had to repeat it several times. He probably gave up (me, too!) and shook his head with matching hand gesture saying "ande" (안돼 or no). It was frustrating.

And so when I read this article, I was quite thrilled to know about these orange taxis or what they call "international taxis". Taxi is not my personal preference for transportation (it's quite costly!) but I do use them sometimes especially when I'm running late for my classes (sometimes means once a week!) or on rare occasions (like what I've mentioned).

Exclusive taxis for non-Koreans to appear in Seoul
April 21, 2009

In efforts to boost tourism and to make life easier for
expats, Seoul is set to introduce exclusive taxis for international tourists and
expatriates living in the city from May 1. The taxis will provide interpreting
services in English and Japanese and will be summoned through a reservation
system. Visitors will be able to reserve these so-called "international taxis"
through a call center or the Internet. The call center will offer 24-hour
service and there will also be a help desk at both Incheon and Gimpo
International Airports.Several taxi stands will be established in various parts
of Seoul including Insa-dong, Myeong-dong and Namdaemun Market.The service will
be launched with a fleet of 119 cabs and the city plans to increase this number
to 300 by August.

It's more expensive of course! But it's good for those people especially for the tourists who can't speak Korean:)


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