Warning about high priced pedicabs

August 6, 2012 2:07:28 PM PDT
Pedicab rides are popular with many tourists enjoying a glorious New York City day.

It's one way to soak in the sites of Manhattan.

"It's perfect. It's tough for him. He's doing all the work for us it's great," said Anna Aliaga, a tourist.

But industry leaders say avoid any surprise by getting a price upfront.

The New York Post reports a Texas family of four paid more than $400 for a 13 block ride.

That's well over the going rate for some helicopter rides, but keep in mind what that licensed operator did was not illegal.

"Quoting up front is the only solution today. So you eliminate pricing on the side which can be confusing," said Gregg Zuman, Vice President of the New York City Pedicab Owners Association.

Zuman says that something's got to give.

Right now, city law allows licensed pedicab drivers to charge what they want, but they must post the price on a rate card in the cab.

The problem some say is the fine print.

Pedicab driver Fara Cash says a few greedy guys are giving this industry a bad name.

"They say it's a dollar a block but that's per person. People don't know. The signs are really small and it's at the bottom of the list," Cash said.

Because of these tricks, legit drivers want the city to amend the law so that all would-be riders are given the entire price before the trip.

Until then, Zuman says to ask your driver questions about their pricing.

"Always ask for a quote up front. Pedicabs are fun. They're fantastic. They're for enjoying, it's a great way around town but protect yourself, demand a quote up front," Zuman said.

The driver mentioned is being investigated for police issued traffic violations, but not consumer complaints.

You should also only use a licensed pedicab, get a quote up front, and get a receipt.

Consumer Affairs does not have any consumer complaints about this particular driver.

Right now driver have to post the rates on each side along with the cab license number, a drivers license number, and how to file a complaint.

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