The rise of metered taxis has made its way to Cambodia with huge success. As the worldwide spread of the personalized taxi service Uber continues, a lot of other companies have found alternatives to increase competition in this industry. This has lead to metered taxis being preferred over local transport because of their cheaper and much more safer travelling methods.
While the entry of Uber into the Cambodian market is still a rumour, reports suggest that the local alternatives work just as well as the international brand. Today, catching a taxi on the road is almost impossible due to pre-bookings and orders.
While this happens, people prefer it much better to sit indoors and request a cab through their smartphone apps. Other than Uber, Phnom Penh and now Siem Reap has apps like PassApp Taxis, Exnet Taxis and iTsumo. The 3 different apps give you a range of options for booking a tuk-tuk, an SUV or a simple taxi.
As a traveller or someone who lives in Cambodia, all you need is a valid Cambodian telephone number and a smartphone to start using any of the services below.
PassApp taxis have the options available of a tuk-tuk, or a taxi. You can order either one with the average waiting time of about 10 minutes or so but it depends on rush hours and late night timings. A taxi costs 2000 riel for a kilometre and 200 riel by the minute. The tuk-tuk costs 1200 riel for a kilometre and has a 3000 riel minimum limit. PassApp taxis only seat 3 customers comfortably!
A bit more expensive than the PassApp Taxi service, Exnet has a huge lineup of regular coupe, sedan and SUV taxis. A regular taxi can cost you at least 2000 riel er kilometre and 200 riel by every minute. The expensive part is that it charges you 1000 riel for dropping a flag, and has a 6000 riel minimum cost.
The SUVs are a little more expensive than the regular taxis, with the meter rate costing about 2600 riel per kilometre and 260 riel for every minute of the ride. The minimum for the SUVs is also 7800 riel minimum, and they charge 2600 riel for a flag-drop. The company has a fixed 30% peak time surcharge from 6pm to 8pm, due to heavy traffic and increased demand.
The most in-demand taxi service of all is the iTsumo service. Users who have personally tried this often complain about it never being available, but drivers suggest this is because of high demand coupled with fewer taxis available.
The company has a very user-friendly and advanced software, and charges 1950 riel for a kilometre, with a 4500 riel minimum rate. They don’t charge for every minute of the ride, which means that iTsumo is currently the least expensive service in Phnom Penh.
A taxi app that is only limited to tuk-tuks, this company has their own lineup of Indian-style tuk-tuks with the seating capacity of 2 passengers. For 3000 riel rate for the first kilometre, and a 360 riel additional cost for every next 300 meters, EZ Go is currently the most cost-friendly transport system in Phnom Penh. The prices currently beat every competitor and the tuk-tuks offer a very traditional style ride. The wait on EZ Go is usually 5 to 10 minutes but the prices make the wait worth it.
The first taxi company to pop up in Phnom Penh, the Global Taxi, is the best service in town when it comes to metered taxis. An amazingly large fleet of over 200 white taxis, this company has a very prompt and quick service. The price is 2500 riel kilometre and usually costs much like a normal tuk-tuk. The company also has a 24 hour helpline that customers can contact anytime if they want to complain about a driver, which is a rare feature in Cambodia. The company also believes in the motto that if the driver does not follow the taxi meter, the customer has no right to pay the driver and can easily complain about them on the helpline.