Some years back, a strange phenomenon happened in Dumaguete. Seen plying the narrow streets were a couple of white cars emblazoned with blue letters saying "Ken Taxi." I felt then that it was so strange to have taxis in my little old hometown, where one can practically walk to everywhere, and the places too far to walk to were always accessible via pedicabs. Whatever would we need taxis for? It seems that many other people shared that sentiment and in a few months the Ken taxis were nowhere to be found.
Recently, however, we've been seeing white taxis with green letters going around the city once again. I was at the airport this morning and saw five such taxis. I interviewed one driver and he told me (in English, ha) that they've been operational for three months already and they have lots of costumers, mostly foreigners or balikbayans, which they bring to hotels, resorts and to their respective hometowns in Negros. From the airport to downtown Dumaguete costs 150.00 pesos, from the airport to Valencia, 400.00 pesos, to Bayawan 2,200.00 pesos, and so on and so forth. He further assured me they can give discounts for long distance trips.
The words on the banner are not so clear so let me just decipher them for you: "Arari Negros Taxi, reliable and finest taxi service in town."
And here are two of the five taxis. The driver's door panel sports the letters ARN which means Arari Negros Taxi.
I wonder what the Arari means, maybe that's the name of the owner. Who, by the way, is also the owner of this new place at the airport: Le Traveller's Cafe which offers a restaurant (Jumong, serving Korean and Filipino food), internet connection AND foot spa services for the weary traveler and/or the forlorn send-off-er.