To Make an Honest Living

Time and again I have encountered dishonest taxi drivers who display the "on call" sign even though they have not been booked in advance by passengers.  But the driver I met tonight takes the cake.  Not only did he dishonestly show the "on call" sign (he was waiting at the taxi stand with the sign BEFORE I called for the cab and he was assigned to my booking), he even tried to cheat on his taxable income.  See my email to the taxi company and the tax authorities for details…


Email to Taxi Company with Complaint to IRAS within:

Please note that I have 2 complaints against taxi no. SHD1227X.

FIRST: Earlier tonight, I was waiting for taxis at UOB Plaza 1.  As no cab was in sight, I dialled this number (64815151) recommended by a friend to get a taxi through an operator assisted call.  Within 1 minute, I was told that "the taxi is already at UOB Plaza 1".

No surprise.  The taxi was indeed waiting at the lobby area with an "on-call" sign displayed.  Obviously, the driver dishonestly displayed the "on-call" sign while waiting for someone to call for a cab.

SECOND: My total cab fare came up to $19.70 and this is the fare my receipt shows.  However, your driver collected $20 from me and insisted that the $0.30 diesel surcharge is not reflected on the receipt.

Please explain the reason for this practice because I believe the diesel surcharge forms part of your taxable income, hence, it should be reflected on the receipt.  I strongly believe this is a case of tax evasion and I have reported this to IRAS.  Please see a copy & paste of my email to IRAS.

To Whom-it-may-concern,

With the recent introduction of the diesel surcharge by taxi companies, I would like to find out if this diesel surcharge forms taxable income by the companies.  The reason I am asking is this.

Earlier tonight, I took a taxi home from work and the bill on my receipt showed $19.70.  However, the taxi driver insisted that I had to pay $20 as there was a $0.30 diesel surcharge on all fares.  Given that the receipt only showed $19.70, does this mean that the $0.30 diesel surcharge earned by the taxi driver/company is not taxable?  Or is this a loophole for tax evasion?  Please advise.

FYI, the details of the taxi I took are as follows:
Company Name: Premier Taxis Pte Ltd
Reg. No.: 20-0304975-H
Taxi No. SHD1277X
Receipt No.: 8275
Start: 12/08/2008 21:44
End: 12/08/2008 22:06
Meter Fare: $13.20
CBD: $3.00
Current Booking: $3.50
Total Fare: $19.70

You should be hearing from IRAS soon.


Frankly, many taxi drivers dishonestly display the "on call" sign to force passengers to call for a cab so that they can earn the $3.50 booking fee.  But to cheat on the diesel surcharge also (Iceman believes the taxi driver did not include the diesel surcharge on the receipt on purpose so that he could earn the $0.30 instead of giving it to the taxi company) is just TOO MUCH.

0 Responses to “To Make an Honest Living”

  1. No Comments

Leave a Reply

August 2008