A rickshaw driver has been filmed trying to charge tourists more than £200 for a journey of one mile that look less than 10 minutes.
The mother and her son, who appeared not to speak very good English, had already handed over £100.
The incident was filmed by a black cab driver, who was outraged. Two policemen are seen intervening to tell the cyclist that he was “ripping off” the tourists.
The man was not doing anything illegal because there are currently no regulations for rickshaw rides, and drivers can charge customers what they like.
Boris Johnson, the Mayor of London, said the incident showed the need to regulate the rickshaw industry.
A spokesman for the Mayor’s office said: “The mayor has serious concerns about the pedicab trade and is lobbying the government for new legislation that would give Transport for London (TfL) powers to regulate them, powers they don’t legally possess at the moment.
“This video only adds weight to his determination to make that happen. It is shocking and utterly disgraceful that pedicab drivers appear to be taking advantage of customers in this way.”
A Westminster council spokesman said: “We are truly shocked at the audacity shown in this video. We have long argued for greater regulation and licensing on rickshaws, not only to avoid clear rip offs like this, but to reduce congestion and improve safety on our streets.
“All too often we see rickshaws riding onto pavements through crowds of pedestrians or blocking off major roads like Regent Street. It has to stop and the Government has to act to give London more power to regulate this trade.