An Open Letter to Boston Cabdrivers

Image source Wikipedia

Per Amelia’s earlier vitriol-filled rant against the MBTA, our city’s public transportation system is often lackluster at best. But to the Hub’s harried commuters, I’d like to point out that local taxi services leave much to be desired as well. Case in point: the class-action lawsuit two cab drivers recently filed against the City of Boston indicates a flawed system rife with disgruntled workers and overly compensated fleet owners, leaving passengers with the shit end of the stick.

Sure, there are a handful of conscientious cabbies in our midst (shout-out to the jolly Russian man who went out of his way to return my wallet, then refused to accept a $20 tip), but nine times out of ten the guy (or occasional gal) on the other side of the partition acts put-upon, ungracious or downright hostile.

Herewith, a snapshot of my grievances:

  • You refuse to pick me up in Back Bay and take me to Beacon Hill because the fare isn’t high enough…when I’m by myself at 2am and it’s the dead of winter. You are not only breaking the law, but sealing your own karmic retribution in one fell swoop.
  • You can’t decide whether or not having your light on means you currently have a passenger. CAN EVERYONE JUST PICK ONE AND STICK WITH IT?!
  • You huff and puff when I ask to pay using plastic, then swear under your breath that I didn’t leave a high enough tip. Boston cabs must be equipped with a FUNCTIONAL credit card processing capability. Deal with it. (Side note: I’d throw in another dollar if you didn’t give me a hard time about paying with credit in the first place).
  • You drive at a glacial pace, go a roundabout route, stop at every yellow light and take other prolonging measures to jack up the fare. May I remind you, maximizing passenger turnover maximizes the money in your pocket.

Trust me, the list continues but I’ll stop ranting so others can chime in. Let me know your experiences and gripes!

Posted by Abby

2 responses to “An Open Letter to Boston Cabdrivers

  1. I travel the country a lot taking cabs They are the worst, with the exception of Pittsburgh PA.
    Cab drivers in Boston are so rude and dumb that they almost always are stopping in the middle of downtown roadways instead of pulling over to corner or side of the road, They are causing/contributing to tie ups and overall bad traffic flow as greatly as any other factor. The Boston Police must cite them for this. They are unprofessional, rude and among the absolute worst drivers navigating the city on a daily basis.

  2. 1) You are correct that it is illegal for drivers to “shop” for fares and it does lead to bad Karma. As a side note I could tell by your attitude you live on Beacon hill. Have you actually ever caught a taxi number and complained to the Boston police hackney carriage unit about “shopping” or you just though whining about it to other cabbies and random internet strangers would solve the problem?

    2) There is no “light on cab open” or vice versa system in Boston. The fact that you still think there might be a system in place means you are either new here or just self absorbed. Since you live in Beacon Hill I assume it is because you are self absorbed. At one time we were close to implementing a system then the Boston Police promoted the commander of the hackney carriage unit to head up the Hyde Park command and the new guy gives no shits about doing anything positive.

    3) Have you once stopped to consider why we do not wish to accept credit? The system forced upon us by the city of Boston is a very bad deal for the drivers. When we hear “I am going to pay by care” We really hear ” I am not going to pay you until Tuesday and I am taking a 6% discount” I would explain to you something positive you could do to assist us in overturning this huge injustice that has been heaped upon us but, we both know you are self absorbed and will do nothing more than continue to piss and moan because we do not want to wait 4 days and lose 6% on your ride home. Also your ride is under $10. Why do you not have $10 on you? Who raised you? I am guessing someone as equally self absorbed?

    4) When the city was busy dumping this shitheap credit card system in our laps they dumped new driving regulations on us which somehow allow them to supersede state law in deciding what constitutes a “safe driver” We have to be more careful then ever now not to be ticketed. Too many tickets negate our ability to service the self absorbed low tipping cretins traveling to and fro from Beacon Hill to the Back Bay with daddy’s credit card. Understand precious?

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