Cancun Taxi Driver Arrested For Charging Canadian Tourist US$1,000 For A Short Ride

Cancun Taxi Driver Arrested For Charging Canadian Tourist US$1,000 For A Short Ride

A Cancun taxi driver has been arrested for extortion, after charging a Canadian traveler $1,050 for a short transfer between terminals 4 and 3 at the International Airport, confirmed the State Attorney General’s Office.

In a series of six viral TikTok videos, a visibly upset Xavier Cormier recorded most of his interactions with Eduardo Galicia Guadarrama (Cristian José “N” alias “Pollo,” according to other sources) the airport taxi driver, and some police officers when they finally showed up.

Cormier stated that the driver tried to flee the scene with his luggage while he was trying to find police assistance. He almost broke a leg when violently entered the taxi to safeguard his belongings from also being stolen.

According to the Canadian, he was going back to Montreal on April 18 at 2:00 am when he was approached by two security guards who told him he wasn’t allowed to stay at Terminal 3, so he needed to take a taxi to Terminal 4. The fare was only $5, so he thought it was okay. Wrong!

Strangely, the two guards pressured him to pay via credit card, telling him it was the only option. He didn’t want to do it but he had no choice.

“After paying with my card and getting back in the taxi for only 2 minutes, I realized the payment that went on my card was over $1,000 US dollars!”

He managed to make it to Terminal 4, where he called the attention of other international tourists.

“When the taxi driver saw the security guard, he tried to escape with my luggage in the car but I managed to jump in the front of the car and shift the transmission on park which almost resulted in a car accident.”

After that, the airport security arrived and forced the driver to make a reimbursement while Cormier demanded to speak with his embassy, said State Secretary Cristina Torres.

Torres said a federal investigation is underway to prevent these scams from happening in the future.

On Monday, the driver was taken into custody by National Guards. The criminal was found “working” at Cancun International Airport as if nothing had happened.

For the time being, the Canadian tourist won’t come back to Mexico, and he is advising other foreigners to stay away from this country.

I will never return to Mexico again. This is crazy,” Cormier said.

Complaints Against Taxi Scams and Violence In Cancun and Mexican Caribbean Continue Despite Drivers Arrests

This flagrant case of extortion adds to a long list of complaints against Cancun taxi drivers who have not only overcharged foreigners but also physically attacked them.

After posting the videos, several people commented that they had gone through similar situations in Cancun and other areas of Quintana Roo state.

In March 2024, a foreign woman and a man were brutally beaten by a couple of taxi drivers in Playa del Carmen when they refused to pay an exorbitant fare.

The taxi drivers were arrested under the charge of “narcomenudeo” (retail drug dealing), but not for attacking the tourists.

In July 2023, other two taxi drivers were arrested in Cancun for assaulting a van carrying foreign tourists, as reported by AP.

Safety Tips For Traveling By Taxi in Cancun and Mexican Caribbean

Traveling by taxi in Cancun and other parts of the Mexican Caribbean is very convenient but you can encounter scams or violence.

Follow these tips to avoid scams or issues:

Use taxi apps: if possible use reputable apps like Uber, Didi, or Cabify.

Double-check when paying by card: always double-check how much are you being charged before you tap your card. Don’t get confused between $USD or $MX.

Agree on the fare before the ride: Agree on the price for your ride before you get inside the taxi.

Take a bus or train: This option helps you to avoid potential scams and saves you money too!

Be respectful: To avoid escalation and potential violence, it’s important to be respectful and not to be rude even if you are part of the scam. Don’t play the “I am a tourist!” or “I am from … this or that country” card, it will most likely get you in more trouble.