Essentially bajaj drivers are licensed to carry 3 passengers and to operate on both fixed routes and fixed tariffs and flexible ones. There is a distinct tariff difference between the two.
Two of the fixed routes in Bahir Dar (a map of the routes has yet to be discovered) go from outside the Papyrus to-and-from Textile (Textile University campus) or Peda (Academic University campus). The cost, on the basis that the driver will not set off until all three passengers have boarded, is 1 birr. Bajaj drivers frequently risk accepting a fourth fare, although the fine for doing so is apparently out of proportion to the 1 birr fare gained. There seems to be more bajaj on the Textile route than the Peda route. The wait in the heat for a Peda-headed bajaj can seem interminable. This causes some passengers - particularly foreign visitors for whom time is ever pressing - to arrange Contract tariffs from outside their hotels:
CONTRACT tariffs (on Fixed routes but starting at an ad hoc point along the route): The price, that concerns the entire occupancy of the bajaj irrespective of the number of passengers (1, 2 or 3), MUST be negotiated and agreed BEFORE getting into the bajaj. The driver will not depart for the destination until the price is agreed. Depending on the bargaining ability of the passengers and the mood of the driver, CONTRACT tariffs from Addis Amba Hotel to Peda varied from 10-15 birr.
FLEXIBLE routes (CONTRACT tariffs): This occurs when the passenger(s) want to avoid taking multiple bajaj on various fixed routes and go straight to a particular destination. The difficulty is ensuring the bajaj driver understands the voiced destination. The rule of thumb is to chose a well-known location near the intended destination. For example - if the intended destination is Bernos Art Gallery (little known) - chose Lake Shore (well known). Also do not expect bajaj drivers to head out beyond the city limits to, for example, the little used former Imperial Palace and the excellent Viewpoint on Bezawit Road. The Contract tariff, that concerns the entire occupancy of the bajaj irrespective of the number of passengers (1, 2 or 3), MUST be negotiated and agreed BEFORE getting into the bajaj. The driver will not depart for the destination until the price is agreed. Addis Amba to the Bernos Art Gallery/Lake Shore restaurant cost 20 birr.