There’s been a mystique around driver’s of taxis or “cabs” for a long time. Taking a taxi was a great way to get around town when you didn’t have access to a car.
Take a look at major cities like New York City. Taxis roam the wilderness of New York, consistently picking up passengers and taking them where they need to go. The dense population means a car isn’t practical, but taking a taxi when you need one is.
The concept for a taxi is simple. Flag down a car that could take you where you need to go. If you could, phone a dispatcher which would radio a taxi to your location for you to ride in. You’d pay by distance and/or time spent in a taxi. However, the concept of rideshares has made that more fluent. Many people eschew taxis for rideshares because they believe them superior. That being said, the taxi service is still a very important part of public infrastructure.
What’s Happened to Taxi Services?
Taxis started having trouble the minute ride shares came along. Suddenly people were able to get rides through an app on their phone. There’s a certain appeal to an app since there’s no need for human contact and interaction. Weirdly, many people love the automation and ability to minimize human contact. Ride shares also offered a sort of personal touch from the drivers. The ability to immediately rank them meant that rideshare drivers need to try to be polite and courteous. This led to a lot of little perks like chocolates, bottled water, etc. Rideshares also started off very economical. To start, there was no need for drivers to have insurance, benefits or vacation pay like taxi drivers needed. It seemed like ride shares were taking over.
Here’s the thing however. Many taxi companies and services have evolved as well. Rather than the old traditional dispatch model, automatic dispatching has become a thing as well. Many taxi companies can be reached through an application instead of a phone call or waving one down. In some cases, multiple taxi companies have joined up to work together in a single app. Just choose the taxi company you prefer at the start.
Questions and Answers
You likely have several questions about modern taxi services after reading that. What follows are some common questions that can hopefully put you at ease and keep you informed.
Q: Are taxi services more expensive?
A: In many cases, taxi services are more expensive than ride shares. Their drivers are full time employees, so it’s usually more expensive to run the company. That being said, the price gap has been shrinking.
Q: Do taxi fares fluctuate like ride shares do?
A: This is one place where taxi services are definitely superior. Their rate is their rate, and doesn’t change if it’s busy.
Q: Are taxi services safe?
A: Taxi drivers need to get a license to be able to work in that industry. Getting this license will involve some background checks. People can also report taxi drivers if they feel uncomfortable thanks to their license always being displayed as they drive.
Q: What are some good local taxi apps?