“Black” taxi

"Black" taxi

If you're unfamiliar with South Africa you may wonder why I named the title of this post "Black" taxi, especially when there are no black vehicles in this photo. The orange minivan in the photo is in fact known colloquially as a "Black taxi"; this form of transport is used by a large portion of the country's population to get to and from work, and by far the majority of these commuters are black. These taxis are generally (and perhaps ironically) white, so this orange one is an exception.

If you are unlucky enough to find yourself on the N2 highway during rush-hour you're sure to experience the taxi operators' phenomenal driving ability - often you just have to sit back and laugh at these drivers' arrogant resourcefulness when navigating stopped or grid-locked traffic. And, oh, by the way, the unofficial rule of the road is that unless you have a significantly large vehicle and/or don't particularly mind your car being scratched or dented, these taxis have right of way. ;-)

6 thoughts on ““Black” taxi

  1. Ed

    I’ve never heard that term but find it offensive. I do not believe that is a PC term at all. The correct term is minibus.

  2. Kerry-Anne

    Ed, I’ve heard these vehicles referred to as “black taxis” for as long as I can remember. Personally, I call them “minibus taxis”, or most often just “taxis”, but the term “black taxis” is certainly in use – perhaps it’s just a northern suburbs thing, though?

  3. Carel-J

    I have to agree with Ed. I haven’t heard the term “Black Taxi” for many years. We just call them taxis.

  4. Paul

    Post author

    Yeah Carel-J, I guess it depends on who it is you speak with. Most of the people I know refer to them as taxis or minibus taxis… but I occasionally still hear the term “black taxi”, which must be really confusing for tourists and hence why I made mention of it. :)

  5. Craig

    Have to agree that the term “black taxi” is very much outdated. More and more these taxi’s are being used by anyone looking for cheap transport (hence commonly used by students such as myself). Really good photo though, especially from a moving vehicle!

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