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Spruce up, Taxi Drivers Told

Apr. 19. 2007

A Beijing taxi ride shouldn't come with a lesson in bad fashion.

Unusual hair colors, such as bright red or yellow, along with chunky earrings on female drivers, won't sit well with administrators as the city gets ready to host the summer Olympics.

Yao Kuo, vice-director of the municipal transport management bureau, said that it had devised a 12-point evaluation chart for cab services, The Beijing News reported yesterday.

For one, cab drivers are barred from smoking while driving. In addition, they can't overcharge, spit or litter.

In addition, drivers should dress in neat, clean clothes and be friendly and polite. Drivers who fail to use taximeters or refuse to pick up passengers will lose their licenses, the report said.

"Some drivers don't care about their appearance and this has a negative impact on the whole industry," said Yao.

Female drivers must not wear big, chunky earrings or dye their hair odd colors like bright red or yellow, and male drivers should not wear their hair long, said Yao. "A person's hairstyle and the accessories they wear are their personal business, but cab drivers must remember that their industry is a window for China's capital, and they contribute powerfully to the city's image," Yao said.

Yao's inspectors are determined to sniff out smelly cabs. Cab managers will be instructed to call in those cabs for a cleaning.

(China Daily April 19, 2007)

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