Tourists are planning their trips to the island and asking how much to pay a cab. Someone suggested yesterday that to go to the Villa Vera area from Centro, you should just give the cabbie 15 pesos when you get there and get out of the cab!
Let me suggest that if you cannot afford 20 pesos, the tourist rate, you might consider a stay-cation. I mean, that's $1.50 for a cab for you and your honey to get out of the chaotic reconstruction of the main drag in Centro!
The recession, a decline in tourism, the rise in gasoline prices and related cost of living increases, has made this a difficult time for the cab drivers.
Many have left the island. Owners of the cars and union licenses, have gone from 12 hour shifts in which they collected 200 pesos, to 16 hour shift in which they are charging the drivers 300 pesos. It is hard with the population being as it is, underemployed, to collect the rental and gasoline money!
So, the first $25US collected, goes to the cab owner. I, as a local, don't feel in the least put out, to pay 100 pesos to someone who takes me into town, gets me past the construction, waits while I hop into the Seven-11 for the ATM, and takes me home. That would be $7.50 in US terms.
Yes, I have a reputation of being thrifty amongst my friends and detractors as well. But I am a reasonable person. I don't know how or why these cabbies continue to drive. But some do and we are lucky to have them.
So, if you are going to, say, La Gloria, from Centro, consider 20 pesos to be a fare rate, and a more just one. You are arriving during a deep recession in Mexico, one with inflation like you have not seen oversees, with gasoline prices higher than in the US, and people with families to feed and electric bills, unlike anything seen virtually anywhere else in the world, facing the drivers. And yes, the rest of us here as well.