All Caleches

Places in Egypt that you don't recommend members or guests to visit, stay, eat , drink or shop for souvenirs and necessities.
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Re: All Caleches

Post by hatusu » Sun Aug 26, 2012 10:25 am

Teddyboy wrote:"It's a barter economy"

Come on TT, I expect better from you! I don't think that the driver would be very happy to swap a scarf or something for a caleche ride; but he might be willing to bargain, or haggle the cash price.
I have actually bartered not long ago. I didnt have the right change for a 10LE taxi fare; the driver didnt have any change either. Stalemate. I dont smoke but happened to have a packet of Marlborough Duty Frees in my bag having recently come back from England. We were both happy with the exchange.



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Re: All Caleches

Post by Chocolate Eclair » Sun Aug 26, 2012 1:28 pm

This subject about Caleche Drivers and their hassle and abuse is well documented on Youtube, as with the words Luxor and Hassle, maybe tourists are queuing up with their short fillms to destroy them as well? who knows, but it does seem that Luxor is well documented on Youtube, and because of this it makes you wonder why we are not flooded with tourists. The City is so famous on Youtube we should maybe be having 40 flights a week from the UK alone, I spent over 2 hours on Youtube looking at Tourist's Video Clips, the funniest one was the Policeman not knowing where the Police Station was, and the 200m Dash by a Caleche Driver, even Hussain Bolt could not run this fast, a great one was the seller trying to sell a small scarab for 500le, and the tourist policeman having his photo taken with a tourist and asking for backsheesh for the pose. :lol: :lol: :lol:

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Re: All Caleches

Post by Chocolate Eclair » Sun Aug 26, 2012 1:35 pm

I forgot to add regarding the Barter Economy, I bartered with a Caleche Driver once asking 20le from him to take me to Karnak because he told me he had no business, needless to say he refused to take me, am I doing something wrong? Another shouted horse and carriage 10le, I paid him the 10le and he refused to give me the horse and carriage so asked for my money back!! Even a taxi driver who shouted taxi to me, I replied how much he said 20le. Again when I asked for the keys he looked at me like I was an Alien. (No Comments Please)

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Re: All Caleches

Post by Mimimay » Sun Aug 26, 2012 3:11 pm

It's been 5 le for as long as I've been going to Luxor,maybe they should put their prices up if they're not happy with 5 le ? Even the price in arabeya has gone up so maybe it's time ?
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Re: All Caleches

Post by Who2 » Sun Aug 26, 2012 6:06 pm

5clebbies ? for that are you maad ? "look at the leather look at the chrome it's worth 2Oclebbies at least. Brian....:cool:
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Re: All Caleches

Post by hatusu » Mon Aug 27, 2012 9:22 am

Barb wrote:I wasnt going to comment on this thread coz what I say always gets me in to trouble, but here goes. :D

The fact of the matter is not what Hatusu was willing to pay the calleche driver the fact is that she shouldnt have been subjected to abuse like that at all. If they can do that to an expat then they are certainly doing it to tourists. I know most of the calleche drivers that sit outside the st Joseph and have given them a telling off on many occasions for hassling tourists, I think Bombay witnessed me doing just that a few days ago over another incident that I heard about. They have always shown me respect but I am trying to get them to understand that by doing things like that they are not doing themselves or Luxor any favours. Things like this needs to be addressed by the ministry of tourism before it gets TOTALLY out of hand!!!!

Hatusu do you know the name of the calleche driver or describe him or his horse so that I can have yet another word with them?
Hi Barb - Ive sent you a PM.

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Re: All Caleches

Post by Subversion » Sun Sep 02, 2012 1:15 am

If something is offered at a fixed price, a customary price or an agreed price - then that should be the price each party should expect to pay or receive. It is for the free will of the buyer/seller to slide up or down from the agreed priced if they so choose to do so - as it is in any situation - and I understand why Hatusu is so peeved !

One thing I did learn - as a westerner you do not earn the respect of Egyptians by being a cash cow. And this is a particularly important consideration for those living there and I would say particularly important for western women to hold their ground.

I agree that 5LE is a paltry sum when viewed in terms of western prices - but if that is the price then that is what it is - it is not about the money but the principle of transacting transparently and honestly.

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Re: All Caleches

Post by TonyC » Sun Sep 02, 2012 11:22 am

Subversion wrote:I agree that 5LE is a paltry sum when viewed in terms of western prices - but if that is the price then that is what it is
My thanks for opening this up again :D . I submit that 5LE is a pretty paltry sum when viewed in terms of Egyptian prices, too. In chat yesterday, we put the price to the "cigarette test". In 2008, for one trip, the 5LE caleche man/taxi man/boat man could buy the cheapest brand, at 3LE, and have 2 left over. Now that brand is 7.5LE, so he needs two trips to have a bit left over.

To thwart “he shouldn’t be smoking” criticism, I offer inflation on prices. The 5LE taxi/carriage/boat man who should keep his prices at those asked five years ago, has seen inflation rises of 11.7% in 2009, 16.2% in 2009, 11.7% in 2010, and 13.3% in 2011 (various indices on the net). So he needs a fare of more than 8LE just to keep pace!

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Re: All Caleches

Post by Subversion » Sun Sep 02, 2012 12:25 pm

TonyC wrote:
Subversion wrote:I agree that 5LE is a paltry sum when viewed in terms of western prices - but if that is the price then that is what it is
My thanks for opening this up again :D . I submit that 5LE is a pretty paltry sum when viewed in terms of Egyptian prices, too. In chat yesterday, we put the price to the "cigarette test". In 2008, for one trip, the 5LE caleche man/taxi man/boat man could buy the cheapest brand, at 3LE, and have 2 left over. Now that brand is 7.5LE, so he needs two trips to have a bit left over.

To thwart “he shouldn’t be smoking” criticism, I offer inflation on prices. The 5LE taxi/carriage/boat man who should keep his prices at those asked five years ago, has seen inflation rises of 11.7% in 2009, 16.2% in 2009, 11.7% in 2010, and 13.3% in 2011 (various indices on the net). So he needs a fare of more than 8LE just to keep pace!
Tony - I agree that those trying to make an honest living should expect a reasonable return for their efforts - in my head 5LE doesn't represent that, though I still don't feel that "overcharging" is the right solution! And although I get the frustration an outpouring of abuse wasn't helpful either.

I do feel that this is a situation where the ex-pat community can weild some positive power by voluntary action.

My first thought would be an acknowledgement that registered caleche drivers need a pay rise to sustain - and only using caleches that display their plates and voluntarily paying 8LE as a standard "short hop" fare?

If everyone got together and did this then it wouldn't take long for it to filter through to become the norm.

Although I am very out of touch, I still get the feeling that grass roots efforts can change a lot in a place like Luxor - perhaps if the ex-pat community were seen to be acting to support local workers then it might help improve relationships...

Maybe I am naive -but I do think there is much local people can do to balance a local economy without waiting on the government to write the rules.

S x

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Re: All Caleches

Post by Goddess » Sun Sep 02, 2012 1:35 pm

TonyC wrote:
Subversion wrote:I agree that 5LE is a paltry sum when viewed in terms of western prices - but if that is the price then that is what it is
My thanks for opening this up again :D . I submit that 5LE is a pretty paltry sum when viewed in terms of Egyptian prices, too. In chat yesterday, we put the price to the "cigarette test". In 2008, for one trip, the 5LE caleche man/taxi man/boat man could buy the cheapest brand, at 3LE, and have 2 left over. Now that brand is 7.5LE, so he needs two trips to have a bit left over.

To thwart “he shouldn’t be smoking” criticism, I offer inflation on prices. The 5LE taxi/carriage/boat man who should keep his prices at those asked five years ago, has seen inflation rises of 11.7% in 2009, 16.2% in 2009, 11.7% in 2010, and 13.3% in 2011 (various indices on the net). So he needs a fare of more than 8LE just to keep pace!
:lol:
I see someone has been sat thinking!
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Re: All Caleches

Post by hatusu » Sun Sep 02, 2012 2:13 pm

Its not up to the expat community to sort things out, its up to the caleche drivers as a group (or whatever other group) to get themselves sorted. Im willing to pay the going rate for anything - at the moment the majority of caleche drivers SAY 5LE when they are touting. If they want 10LE they should be honest and say so at the beginning. If they all got together and decided the minimum price was now going to be 10LE - fine, thats what Im happy to pay.

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Re: All Caleches

Post by Teddyboy » Sun Sep 02, 2012 3:48 pm

But then it would be a cartel, hatusu, and you know that it would be beneath their dignity to have anything to do with mere 'carts', they're caleche-men, for heaven's sake!

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Re: All Caleches

Post by TonyC » Sun Sep 02, 2012 7:33 pm

Subversion wrote:perhaps if the ex-pat community were seen to be acting to support local workers then it might help improve relationships...
That might be a tall order here! :D . I agree that groups such as the caleche men and the boat men should "sort themselves out" and if business returns I trust they will set higher prices. In the meantime, they ain't gonna get rich on what most expats are willing to pay!

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Re: All Caleches

Post by hatusu » Sun Sep 02, 2012 8:02 pm

If they want our business then they have to provide their service at an attractive price. If the motorboat prices go up too much, we will take the ferry. If the taxi fares go up too much on the East bank, we will walk, (which on the whole I enjoy) and others will take arabayahs. I totally understand and want people to earn a decent living wage, but they also have to understand that we are not a "captive audience". We do have other choices. And its not just expats. Many tourists who know Luxor wont pay the higher prices - the vast majority of guests here at the hotel, when I tell them the prices, prefer to take the ferry as opposed to a motorboat when crossing. Those of you living in the UK - when you fly out here you're all looking for the cheapest price for a flight arent you? Whats the difference?

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Re: All Caleches

Post by Subversion » Sun Sep 02, 2012 8:25 pm

hatusu wrote:If they want our business then they have to provide their service at an attractive price. If the motorboat prices go up too much, we will take the ferry. If the taxi fares go up too much on the East bank, we will walk, (which on the whole I enjoy) and others will take arabayahs. I totally understand and want people to earn a decent living wage, but they also have to understand that we are not a "captive audience". We do have other choices. And its not just expats. Many tourists who know Luxor wont pay the higher prices - the vast majority of guests here at the hotel, when I tell them the prices, prefer to take the ferry as opposed to a motorboat when crossing. Those of you living in the UK - when you fly out here you're all looking for the cheapest price for a flight arent you? Whats the difference?
But what constitutes an attractive price?

Is an attractive price to the customer the price that acknowledges the overheads of the provider and allows them the chance to make a profit or is it the cheapest price, which may see the provider operating at a loss?

I don't for one minute agree it was right in your situation to have agreed a price and then be subjected to a fleecing and a gobfull - but reflecting on Tony's post it doesn't seem there has been an increase in prices for this service for 20 years

I don't think either that it is down to the ex-pat community to resolve all of Luxor's issues - but similarly if there is a problem on your doorstep then in some way or another it is your problem. You can choose to absolve yourself of any responsibility for being a part of the solution or you can choose to work with the problem and help form a solution - each to their own

As for looking for the cheapest price - no that's not how I roll. I am happy to pay the fair market price for the service I need, coming back to your original post - this is what you had agreed to do. And again I say you didn't deserve the treatment you got

S x

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Re: All Caleches

Post by Goddess » Mon Sep 03, 2012 10:43 am

Just to clarify, just because I can and I'm a bit bored .....but the prices for taxis and caleches are far higher in Luxor than anywhere else in Egypt barring Sharm.
It's funny that caleche drivers up in Alex charge lest and still get their ciggies is it not?
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Re: All Caleches

Post by Bombay » Sun Sep 16, 2012 12:26 pm

I would suggest not using any caleche that is not displaying its license on the back, there is probably a reason they are not displaying the license plate, there is something in the mindset not to display the plate. There are caleches' out there that have the plates on.

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Re: All Caleches

Post by Adamantium » Sun Mar 22, 2015 1:28 am

Whenever I research the Hassles of Luxor it is always the Caliche drivers that come out on top. I have read of some stating a price of 20 pounds to a tourist for the hour. The tourist quite rightly being in Egypt took this as being 20LE. After the journey was up he was asked for £20 which angered him as it would me. I would stand my ground and hand over 20LE. This is the price I had always paid for an hour. I had driven to Karnak temple on a Caliche, wondered around the temple for a couple of hours and then driven back into the heart of Luxor all for 20LE. Admittedly on the trip the driver tried to sell me a longer ride to gain more money. I let him prattle on and I got off where I wanted to get off.

I had videoed that trip so I know how much he did prattle on. I had also become aware his co-driver had insulted me something I was not aware of at the time not then being aware of bad Arabic swear words. It is a shame as I had since given that family a lot of business. I am disappointed with them and it is an issue I shall bring up with them if I find it necessary. I have always enjoyed Caliche rides especially when we venture off to places I would otherwise miss. Although I have a lot of video of these pleasant experiences none of them have made it to YouTube. If they do they will be positive experiences. But the downturn in tourism is making these Caliche drivers into their own worse enemies.

I did see one tourist in an argument with a Caliche driver, perhaps on account of the cross-wires concerning their interpretation of the fare. Caliche drivers should be grateful for any trade that comes their way. Feed for the horses is the only fuel expense and so it is all profit.

Some Egyptians usually tradesmen, Caliche drivers and Felucca captains can exhibit a Jekyll and Hyde mentality. When seeking business and when they obtain custom they can be as nice as pie. Deny them business or cross them they turn into monsters. And so they leave us with the obvious opinion that we are just money bags to them. So long as they are getting out money then they are nice, except as stated above they might say something in Arabic which then comes back to bite them in the butt. Now I appreciate why some get a bit funny about me filming my trip. These are however rare.

I do have video of one trip when the driver pushed his luck and asked for a fee of 100's of LE. This however didn't get nasty. He was actually quite the gentleman and quite genuine. He accepted the price, perhaps as it is the price as stated in 'Rough guide to Egypt' at the time. So that guide is worth referring to if in doubt.

Having heard about these Caliche video experiences on YouTube I shall have to investigate and see if they feature any familiar faces. Given how numerous these Drivers are the odds are probably against that.

But now things have changed and they are like Vultures or so I have heard. Pouncing on the tourists as they depart their hotel making it difficult for those who have spent all of that money to return to Egypt only to be pushed back into their hotel and hide away. Would cutting them out through the use of an iPod deflect their advances? I doubt they like being ignored and if, as has happened they pull the ear-plugs from my ears I will get upset. One tip I have read is not to reply to them or make eye contact. If they know the language you speak they have got you. Do not say a word or if you know some ancient or unfamiliar tongue speak that. If they cannot engage you in a conversation then they are wasting their time. If you make eye contact again they will leap. Shades, darker the better. It is Egypt so you should cover up and shield your eyes. They could prove to be your best deterrent.

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Re: All Caleches

Post by Glyphdoctor » Sun Mar 22, 2015 4:51 am

Check out the prices in other major cities around the world for a horse carriage ride and you will find that even 20 GBP is a dirt cheap bargain. One hour in a horse carriage in NYC will set you back significantly more than the average British tourist spends in an entire day in Egypt, on everything-lodging, food, transport and other activities. If you can't even handle Egypt's bargain prices, then it is better to stay home. You're definitely not moneybags, you are penny pinching misers.

Of course, they don't have any expenses for medical care for their horses as they have never earned enough to afford to pay for it themselves and after decades of their operation in Luxor, are still reliant on charity horse hospitals. That alone should tell you something about "all profit".

Then there are the license fees and the cost of maintaining their carriages from wear and tear that you forgot about.

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Re: All Caleches

Post by Dusak » Sun Mar 22, 2015 5:08 am

In compering the cost of carriages in other parts of the world, there has usually been an excepted level of payment, so if you pay a high price in NY that is because it has always been relatively high. You come to Egypt and it was renowned for the cheapness of the carriages, but now, due to the lack of customers, they are attempting to increase it some ten fold which the seasoned traveler to this country refuse to pay. I would be surprised if they pay any license fee as they haven't since the Rev 1 took off. Care for horses in the animal welfare centers here has been a license for abuse since it became common knowledge that they can plead poverty and receive free treatment. That should be stopped and the money spent on the animals that do not make their owners profits by way of transporting tourists about. If you want to comment of the maintenance of the carriages, take a slow walk around Luxor on any given day, eight out of ten show distinct lack of any maintenance. They still do not have their license plate numbers on the rear, so many still prowl the roads illegally and unregulated, a practice that proves to me that they are not, majority wise, honest traders.
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