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  1. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by YummyPL  [View Original Post]
    ShawMan,

    I feel for you but there are several not-so-old posts that speak to the benefits of Yandex Taxi and other apps as well as indication of how much a taxi ride should be. That said, I had a very similar experience in Istanbul. I guess we have to learn somewhere.

    Glad you are back safely. I'm looking at October for my next trip.
    ShawMan,

    Ditto on Yummy's comments. Fortunately, I was sternly warned before my first trip to Russia to ALWAYS arrange a taxi in advance. These dudes like the one who scammed you are brutal. By the way, the reason the woman behind the counter did not lift a finger to intervene in the scam was that she would have been threatened with physical violence if she did. As you may have learned by now, Russia is a gangster nation. Effectively, it's lawless in so far as the people making and enforcing the laws are the same ones committing the crimes. Like the old saying of letting the fox guard the hen house. Anyhow, not to to turn this into a rant but in the big picture 6,000 rubles ($95 US) is not the end of the world. If it makes you skeptical, wary and cautious then it's a cheap lesson. Trust me, there are far worse things that can happen to you in Moscow.

    Good luck on your next trip!

    Cheers,

    Jake.

  2. #3
    ShawMan,

    I feel for you but there are several not-so-old posts that speak to the benefits of Yandex Taxi and other apps as well as indication of how much a taxi ride should be. That said, I had a very similar experience in Istanbul. I guess we have to learn somewhere.

    Glad you are back safely. I'm looking at October for my next trip.

  3. #2

    Post 2. 0, corrected version

    Let me try this again guys, except this time in a way where you can understand what the hell I am talking about hehe LOL sorry about that previous post, please just delete / ignore it. This is the proper version:

    want to know what the cab fare from Domodedovo to the city center will look like? if you fall sucker like I did, it will be 6000 roubles. I am usually not a sucker either, I have travelled quite a bit, and have thwarted con scams before. but this time they got me good, because over here the system does NOTHING to protect you. so these guys use color of authority to job you over. my suggestion is that, JUST FOR YOUR FIRST TIME LANDING, have your ride already waiting. I already knew about android apps that you can use to call a registered cab in your immediate vicinity. I just didn't think to use it for that first cab ride into town, because I didn't feel like wrestling with waiting around for that cab to show up, if I even had a cell signal at all (which a lot of times I don't when I first land, or heavens forbid my battery is dead!). I was feeling nasty getting off that 12 hour plane ride and just wanted nothing more than use the commode, take a shower, and brush my teeth. yeah, don't look for a cab like I did. just use yandex or something and wait for your cab ;-)

    so here is the post mortem - I analyzed it over and over in my head to see where my critical flaw was, and what I realized was that they are allowed into the building to wait for you as you exit. even if you ignore them, and start walking over to the taxi stand like I did, they can and will CROSS THE BARRIER to approach you directly and insist that they are employees of the taxi service. THEY WEAR TAXI COMPANY UNIFORMS. the lady behind the counter will do nothing but watch with a deadpan mug as she witnesses your job ... she wont say a word, and she is probably smiling a little on the inside (gotta love that public sector union, huh!?!). HER COMPLACENCE SUPPORTS THE PREDATORY INTERLOPER. the guy will take your bags, walk you out the back service area where the employees are having their smoke breaks, and bring you over at the far end of the arrival pickup line to a cluster of yellow taxi cabs (which are PRIVATE cabs because there are no laws regulating the differences in color ... the fact that yellow is internationally recognized as a cab color doesn't help either). this is when they ask your destination, pull out a thick, official looking laminated spiral notebook, turn some pages and point to a chart that says your fare will be ... TADA you just got jobbed!!! he'll even finish you off by adding the touch of offering you a business upsell to a non descript suv LOL!!

    All the red flags are there, and when pointed out it appears like a no-brainer. BUT if you have never been here before, just got off a loooong flight, just want to get to the hotel ASAP, the sale doesn't happen inside the airport but happens at the cab, it looks like a negotiation for the total amount before just like many people are told to do, and first time travelers like me are unsure of local procedures or customers (ESPECIALLY if you HAVE travelled a lot and know just how varied the international airports can be), then this is easy to fall for, because nobody posts an online post mortem like this.

    You see, the thing is, before arrival, I actually I DID MY HOMEWORK. And I STILL FELL. All the reviews I have ever read were several years old and only had a few lines that were not detailed enough to present recognition to what will take place. What really sells it is that I HAVE been to other countries where the cabbies are doing their job by approaching you, and they are giving you regulated fares (not jobbing you). So it is easy to get confused. Also you are constantly told by everything around you that "Moscow is more expensive" and "things are different here".

    And as I communicate this, and maybe still don't end up helping anybody, I am sure that a few years down the line someone will post another thread about how they got jobbed, and may even have a few new twists. You see, what we are witnessing here are master craftsmen plying their trade. They are predators of the highest order, and they operate with insane empathy for their soon to be victims. And by that I mean they know what you're thinking and feeling before you do. They are old as time itself, and they pervade every area of commerce, not just con jobs. His life must be flourishing, otherwise he would most likely seek some sort of office in government, and all the power that comes with state authority. If you want to know the psychological makeup of someone as deeply pathological as this, I can tell that he is basically the same guy that gatecrashes large scale private parties in order to pickpocket the guests. So if you ever wondered what do people like that do during the day for work, well, now you know:-p they usually have drug habits and abandoned children as well. Master con men of this caliber are almost awe-inspiring in some twisted and evil sort of way. Movies portray them as the kind of people who are real special, and that you would want to emulate. Nietzschian pathology maybe? Who knows, but I digress.

    In all of this, who I really feel for are the drivers themselves. You see, they are just local private cabs. And they are probably told to keep their mouth shut while a masterclass predatory manipulator / interloper / scumbag slips in and takes three times more than what they make, as a greasy middle-man. 1500 goes to the driver (flat rate), 4500 roubles (the difference) is what the con man keeps, without lifting a finger to labor all day. The drivers are just supposed to be glad they are getting the work. BTW, 1500 roubles is THE HIGHEST you should pay for a cab from Domodedovo to city center. So at least the poor cab driver gets that. Let's just say I had a long time to chat with the cab driver. I knew something wasn't right, but I couldn't quite place my finger on it, so I chatted him up. He is a real good kid. My heart bled all over. Not for me, but for him. What a first experience right as someone literally take their first steps into the country of Russia, huh? To get so profoundly torched by something so deeply pathological that I can't really call it a human. If he were anything better he wouldn't be able to look himself in the mirror or justify his existence. But I guess I am glad and thankful for the experience.

  4. #1

    Connivance, confidence, cabbies, and you. A cautionary tale

    If you fell sucker like I did, it will be 6000 roubles. I am usually not a sucker either, I have travelled quite a bit, and have caught con scams before. But this time they got me good, because over here the system does NOTHING to protect you. So these guys use color of authority to job you over. My suggestion is that, JUST FOR YOUR FIRST TIME LANDING, have your ride already waiting. Use yandex app for the android. It will save you. Download it before your flight, and call up your cab through that app right as you land. There won't be much of a wait, and it will be totally worth it.

    So here is the post mortem. I analyzed it over and over in my head to see where my critical flaw was, and what I realized was that they are allowed into the building to wait for you as you exit. Even if you ignore them, and start walking over to the taxi stand like I did, they can and will CROSS THE BARRIER to approach you directly and insist that they are employees of the taxi service. THEY WEAR TAXI COMPANY UNIFORMS. The lady behind the counter will do nothing but watch with a deadpan mug as she witnesses your job. She won't say a word, and she is probably smiling a little on the inside. The guy will take you bags, walk you out the back service area where you employee smoking, and bring you over to a cluster of yellow taxi cabs (which are PRIVATE cabs because there are no laws regulating the differences in color. Yellow is internationally recognized as a cab color doesn't help either). This is when they ask your destination, pull out a thick, official looking laminated spiral notebook, turn some pages and point to a chart that says your fare will be. TADA you just got jobbed! He'll even finish you off by adding the touch of offering you a business upsell to a non descript suv LOL!!

    All the red flags are there, and when pointed out it appears like a no-brainer. BUT if you have never been here before, just got off a loooong flight, just want to get to the hotel ASAP, the sale doesn't happen inside the airport but happens at the cab, it looks like a negotiation for the total amount before just like many people are told to do, and first time travelers like me are unsure of local procedures or customers (ESPECIALLY if you HAVE travelled a lot and know just how varied the international airports can be), then this is easy to fall for, because nobody posts an online post mortem like this.

    You see, the thing is, before arrival, I actually I DID MY HOMEWORK. And I STILL FELL. All the reviews I have ever read were several years old and only had a few lines that were not detailed enough to present recognition to what will take place. What really sells it is that I HAVE been to other countries where the cabbies are doing their job by approaching you, and they are giving you regulated fares (not jobbing you). So it is easy to get confused. Also you are constantly told by everything around you that "Moscow is more expensive" and "things are different here".

    And as I communicate this, and maybe still don't end up helping anybody, I am sure that a few years down the line someone will post another thread about how they got jobbed, and may even have a few new twists. You see, what we are witnessing here are master craftsmen plying their trade. They are predators of the highest order, and they operate with insane empathy for their soon to be victims. And by that I mean they know what you're thinking and feeling before you do. They are old as time itself, and they pervade every area of commerce, not just con jobs. His life must be flourishing, otherwise he would most likely seek some sort of office in government, and all the power that comes with state authority. Master con men of this caliber are almost awe-inspiring in some twisted and evil sort of way. Movies portray them as the kind of people who are real special, and that you would want to emulate. Nietzschian pathology maybe? Who knows, but I digress.

    In all of this, who I really feel for are the drivers themselves. You see, they are just local private cabs. And they are probably told to keep their mouth shut while a masterclass predatory manipulator / interloper / scumbag slips in and takes three times more than what they make, as a greasy middle-man. 1500 goes to the driver (flat rate), 4500 roubles (the difference) is what the con man keeps, without lifting a finger to labor all day. The drivers are just supposed to be glad they are getting the work. BTW, 1500 roubles is THE HIGHEST you should pay for a cab from Domodedovo to city center. So at least the poor cab driver gets that. Let's just say I had a long time to chat with the cab driver. I knew something wasn't right, but I couldn't quite place my finger on it, so I chatted him up. He is a real good kid. My heart bled all over. Not for me, but for him. What a first experience right as someone literally take their first steps into the country of Russia, huh? To get so profoundly torched by something so deeply pathological that I can't really call it a human. If he were anything better he wouldn't be able to look himself in the mirror or justify his existence. But I guess I am glad and thankful for the experience.

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