Seoul taxi drivers to fine vomiting passengers

January 27, 2015
Taxies form a long queue at a taxi stop in Seoul. (Yonhap)

Taxies form a long queue at a taxi stop in Seoul. (Yonhap)

By Kim Se-jeong

Starting from next month, passengers who vomit inside taxis will be fined 150,000 won ($138), according to the Seoul Taxi Association.

The city government recently approved a proposal from the Seoul Taxi Association to impose a fine on those who vomit inside taxis.

City officials said the fine is a symbolic move to make passengers behave and try to change society’s heavy drinking culture.

Passengers who refuse to pay the fine will risk facing a penalty five times that amount.

“This won’t make drivers issue tickets for unconscious passengers,” said one association member. “That will be another dispute. This revision is important in that it has established the basis upon which passengers can be fined for not behaving properly in the taxi.”

According to an association survey last year, out of 25,631 complaints reported by taxi drivers, 10,892 cases, or 42.5 percent, involved vomiting. On average, a Seoul cab driver encountered a vomiting passenger at least once every two weeks.

The association surveyed 4,773 taxi drivers between September and November.