A few weeks after the government announced the creation of a new tourist agency to manage tourist attractions in the country, thousands of tourists from around the world took to social media to express their dismay.
In Mexico City, one such incident that garnered national attention was when a driver refused to take a passenger who arrived with a family member.
“Why should we let a tourist leave the family behind for free?” asked a post on Twitter.
Another posted a photo of a family waiting at the airport, only to be refused entry to the cab when a tourist arrived.
The hashtag #TunisianTourism was quickly trending.
It seems that many people are tired of paying tourists for rides that they cannot take, as in this case.
The cab driver had a point, but the incident illustrates just how expensive taxis are in Mexico.
“The price of a taxi in Mexico is about $15 a ride, which is double the cost of a normal taxi,” said Manuela Garcia, who runs a cab-hailing service in Mexico and Costa Rica.
“A typical cab ride costs between $30 and $40, depending on how many people you have, how crowded you want to go, and where you want it to take place.”
Mexico City’s taxi drivers, like many others, don’t have the luxury of the luxury cars that many tourists are accustomed to seeing.
Taxi drivers, however, are paid a higher salary than most of the rest of the city’s workers, and they can earn more money in the future if they have to take more trips.
“If you want a cab, the first thing you need to do is learn how to operate it,” said Alejandro Gonzalez, a taxi driver in the capital.
“Then, you can then choose from a large selection of drivers to pick you up, and pay you as much as you want.”
In Mexico, a car can cost up to $5,000 a year, depending upon the number of passengers.
While drivers are allowed to pick up passengers for free, many do not have the same level of freedom as they do in the U.S. or Canada.
“People think they have unlimited freedom, but in fact they have limited freedom,” said Ricardo Martínez, a driver in El Paso, Texas, who owns two taxi services.
“Most of the time, they’re just making the trip for money.”
There are currently six companies in Mexico that provide cabs.
The most popular of them, Uber, charges between $4 and $5 a trip, according to data from the International Transport Workers Union.
Other companies, including Comandante de Taxi, operate independently.
The government is expected to issue a new regulations governing taxis in the coming months, but there are no official figures for how many of them there are in the Mexican capital.
The majority of drivers are Mexican citizens who live in the city, but some are also tourists, many of whom come to the country to get away from the stress of the economy.
“It’s not so much the drivers themselves, but that they are the ones who are getting into the taxis, driving them,” said Garcia.
“We are not so worried about what’s going on in the back, and that is what we do in Mexico.”