Japanese taxis aren’t the cheapest, and that’s an understatement. But this apparently minor detail didn’t worry Koichi Machida of Aichi Prefecture – not in the slightest.
The 36-year-old man in question ordered a taxi in Toyohashi, with the destination being Aomori, his hometown. An ordinary sounding request on the surface, and one made even more understandable by Machida-san giving the reason for his journey as, “My relative is now critically ill. I want you to take me to Aomori where I will have money.” The potential customer’s mention of money however hints at the slightly unusual nature of the request: Toyohashi to Aomori is a whopping 1,115-kilometre journey.
Surprisingly unfazed by the distance, the cab company arranged a car and two drivers for the trip, and upon arrival in Aomori the meter showed a phenomenal 352,900 yen (1,777 pound) fare. The only problem was that Mr. Machida didn’t have the money, so instead of going to the bank as promised, he promptly ran off without paying.
The fare dodging fraudster was later picked up by the police in a nearby hotel, and found with the princely sum of 13,000 yen (65 pound) in his pocket. Machida later confessed that after losing his job in Toyohashi, he simply wanted to return home to Aomori. However why he didn’t just take the train wasn’t disclosed.