Cabbies being kept in check

The recent arrest at Athens International Airport of a taxi driver for cheating in terms of fares brought to eight the number of cabbies caught this year with taxi meters rigged to overcharge customers.

Sector representatives say that intensified inspections over that past few years have helped weed out cheating cabbies, asking that the momentum be kept up as taxi drivers — who have seen a decline in business of 40-60 percent since the start of the crisis in 2010 — cannot afford rotten apples among their ranks.

The most common way of cheating customers is rigging the taxi meter to clock up more mileage or euros per kilometer. The methods of doing so include activating the meter?s counter to clock up a bigger fare or the odometer to read a greater distance via a hidden remote control device.

The best way to see whether the taxi meter is legitimate is to check that the small metallic seal attached to it is intact. Customers should also demand a receipt, which is itemized.