Taking a cab in Prague can be taxing.

Rumour has it amongst the travel savvy that tourists run the risk of being ripped-off in Prague, where they may pay more than the going local rate in bars and restaurants and can be overcharged in taxis and even for underground tickets. While we are prepared to haggle over a taxi fare in many non-European countries, we expect EU Prague to play by the rules.

The city, aware of the threat to its reputation, has been fighting to clean up its taxi service, with some success, reports The Daily Mail, but it can still be risky. Apart from charging illegal higher fares, some dishonest drivers have refused to produce receipts, and one even wired up the seats so he could deliver an electric shock to difficult passengers. Interestingly, in 2005, the city’s mayor pretended to be a tourist and was taken round the houses, paying €26 for a €4 ride.

But before you pack your walking boots, there’s hope on the horizon. Czech firm Et netera has developed an iPhone app. which uses the global positioning system (GPS) to measure the distance each customer has taken to calculate the proper fare. The service, called 'virtual metre', allows visitors to verify right in the taxi whether the driver is trying to rob him. The app has the capability to report dishonest drivers to the country's regulating body.

Downloading the application is expected to be free.

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