It's a matter of course for petit taxi drivers in Fez to put the meter on as the car sets off ... why, then, are taxi drivers in Casablanca and Marrakech so very obstreperous?
a petit taxi in Fez - Casablanca's are also red
When The View from Fez team visited Casablanca recently, we had plenty of fights with local taxi drivers who simply refused to use their meter. In fact, on emerging from Casa Voyageurs station, we picked not the man who shouted 'taxi!', but the one who shouted 'meter!'.
This kindly man, Ibrahim, explained to us that the fares stipulated by the city are too low to make it economical. So drivers would rather not use their meter and charge as much as they can get, which can be quite a bit when their passengers are unknowing tourists. It seems to us that it would be better for the city to allow the drivers to put their fares up, if it means that meters will be used. Meanwhile, the drivers are giving Morocco a bad name.
Marrakech is even worse. But we can report that in Fez and in Tangier taxi drivers DO use their meters and are courteous and polite. It is to be hoped that the authorities crack down on the rude and arrogant Casa taxi drivers, for, as one American tourist told us - "To have to deal with a dishonest taxi driver on your first day in a country, leaves a very bad impression."