Luxor Taxi Conclusion: It’s Impossible to Pay What You Paid

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And now for the dramatic conclusion of my time in Luxor.

Fed up with the swindlers, I passed out early yesterday from exhaustion. All I wanted to do was wake up, get in a taxi, and get to the airport. Instead, I found myself walking the empty streets of Luxor searching for a taxi that wouldn’t rip me off too badly.

Even at 430am, their ability to haggle was as sharp as I ever. I knew that time was against me so I grew slightly worried that I would not find a taxi at this hour and on a Friday, the Muslim day of prayer.

When one taxi driver said, “It is impossible to pay what you have paid from the airport,” I thought I had finally lost it. The driver was making me question my own reality.

After a couple more ridiculous offers, I thought maybe I should just call it a defeat and pay whatever they asked. The alternative was to miss my flight and stay another day in this tourist exploiting paradise.

But lucky for me the taxi driver blinked and accepted my offer. En route the anxiety grew as I swore I heard the driver’s tire pop. Then at the checkpoint the driver said he left his ID papers at home.

Finally at the airport, I’m happy to be getting out of this place. I’m not saying don’t visit Luxor but bring your blood pressure medication if you do.

One last Luxor taxi
One last Luxor taxi

 

 

9 COMMENTS

    • I wish I could Gene but I enjoy the bargaining too much. There are rules to hustling that have to be honored to keep it fun and fair. I won’t give in even if it causes me more stress than it is worth if that makes any sense.

      • Actually I have a better reply. If I didn’t haggle as hard as I did that $30 would’ve been $300 and the person ok with losing $300 would be out even more. There’s only one fair price and I won’t pay a cent more than that and neither should you.

  1. Your first reply shows that your original post is disingenuous in tone. You make it sound like you were so beaten down by being there. That doesn’t align with saying in the reply that you enjoy the bargaining too much. Either this was a highlight of your trip or you hated it, pick one. I can understand you writing in a bit of hyperbole to get more clicks, but at least be consistent about it.

    Moreover, your second reply is actually a far worse reply. Your argument that $30 would have been $300, which would have been even more is not true either. There’s a time and a place to haggle. If you don’t have constraints and have the luxury of time on your hands (and if bargaining provides you utility and a sense of fairness), then go ahead and bargain. When you have a fixed obligation, like a flight to catch, then you may not be as much of a stickler. There’s nothing forcing you to negotiate hard during your trip and saving money and then giving in on the last trip. So it would have actually been $30 and your slippery slope argument is specious.

    Now, factor in the cost of another night’s stay and food, not to mention the fact that you’d have to take your chances and bargain for a taxi the next night, and it’s pretty clear that paying the extra $30 in that situation is actually the rational and money saving move.

    I’m with Gene on this.

    • First, the click nonsense has nothing to do with my writing. That’s just silly.

      And like I said there are rules to hustling. In fact there is honor among thieves. If you get the better of me then I can deal with that but I can’t deal with the nonsense of changing what we agreed on.

      There’s a fine line between the two and the diminishing return from the fun of bargaining and dealing with bullshit.

      And you are wrong about the slippery slope argument. If I don’t account for every peso, pound, and leira, then it easily spirals out of control and I’m left wondering what happened to my cash.

      Maybe you are better than I am at budgeting while traveling but that’s inapplicable to my experience.

      This post and the previous one are meant to highlight how annoying the taxi and bargaining were in Luxor. Literally worse than anywhere I have ever been. Bargain vs bullshit probably should’ve been the title because it was more annoyance from the latter than enjoyment of the further.

      Thanks for the comment regardless of our disagreement.

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