“Some years ago, I was traveling in Greece and arrived in Piraeus. As the custom on many Greek islands, owners of accommodation met the ferry with offers of accommodation. Here on the mainland, it proved to be similar. A taxi driver offered to take my friend and me to hotels.
‘For free?’ I asked.
‘Yes,’ I was told.
I was cautious, having read in tourist guides of dodgy practice by cheating Athens taxi drivers, but we agreed. This would have been fine except the hotel the driver took us to was full. He assured us he would find a room and took us to another hotel.
He eventually did. We checked in and then went out for a meal. We were down to our last few coins, so I visited a cashpoint. I had two separate lots of cash; small value coins in one pocket and a roll of notes in another. When we returned to the hotel, the taxi driver was there waiting for us and demanding payment. We explained that we had been told the fare was free due to us taking accommodation he took us to. He surely had a deal with the hotel. So we refused.
Later in our room, the phone rang. It was the reception desk, the taxi driver was demanding fare payment again. Again we refused. As we settled for the night, the phone went again and I was called down to reception to talk to the taxi driver.
When I met him downstairs, I gave up and reached into my pocket for a good handful of coins. As I put them in his hands, he looked scornful and asked for more. I put more coins in his hands but the value of the coins was small so they made very little value. He felt he was not going to get any more payment. Then I had an idea and went to his taxi number plate to photograph it with my camera. He obviously thought he was about to be reported and ran to me, seizing money from his bag and giving it to me. Then hurriedly drove off. I was left with far more money than I had started with.”