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citywide_clt

Charlotte taxi services

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Hello everyone- I am new as a member, but have been reading almost everyday for a few years.

Just wanted to know what you guys thought of Charlotte's taxi companies. I am in a profession where I sometimes "sit" uptown and noticed some really crappy cabs on the street. One cabbie, who had a wire hanging out of his window and torn upholstry told me he couldn't understand why the uptown weekend crowd refused to get in his car.

Do any of you take a cab to work or other venues and if not, is it because of the drivers and/or look of the vehicle. A friend of mine's purse was held hostage by a barely-English speaking driver when she asked him to wait outside at the hospital. I am curious if any of you have had similar experiences.

This feedback will also help me with a project I am working on with a co-worker.

Thanks!

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Welcome to the forums! Personally, I have no need to take a cab in Charlotte, but when compared to other cities, our fleet is definately lacking. It appears to be harder to catch a cab in DT Charlotte and regarding the look and age of the cabs themselves, they're a bit lacking. Places like Chicago have much newer and better kept cabs where most of ours are aging. Sometimes it is hard to tell if a car is a cab or not in Charlotte because of the lack of standards. I've been DT on many occasions where I notice a cab on the street without a driver to be seen, I'm sure that can't have a positive effect on business.

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i have been in a few awful cabs in charlotte. It is especially bad in the early morning when taking cabs to the airport, as not only are the cars themselves rundown, but you get the reek of all the smoke, boos and sometime more from the bar crowd a few hours earlier.

I think Charlotte passed an ordinance last year, though, that further restricted the age of cabs. I don't think i've had any really old/bad ones since then, but i don't really use cabs that often.

I like the idea of cab uniformity for some reason. There is something about the new york cab system that really just makes it seem classier.

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I think Charlotte passed an ordinance last year, though, that further restricted the age of cabs.  I don't think i've had any really old/bad ones since then, but i don't really use cabs that often.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I think it hasn't gone into effect yet - From what I remember cabs will not be able to operate if they're more than seven years old. It reportedly upset most of the taxi companies, because the majority of Charlotte cabs are well over seven years old and now they must be replaced.

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or how about hybrid Ford Escapes?  that could provide space and lower costs.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Look what happened in NYC - they sold a few reduced price taxi licenses to those who would operate hybrid taxis; then realized they had no provision to authorize those cars to be taxis. Those who paid the $222,743 "reduced" price license are pretty ticked.

Hybrid Taxis Catch-22

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Look what happened in NYC - they sold a few reduced price taxi licenses to those who would operate hybrid taxis; then realized they had no provision to authorize those cars to be taxis. Those who paid the $222,743 "reduced" price license are pretty ticked.

Hybrid Taxis Catch-22

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

i saw that about those natural gas cabs... i'd be ticked, too, if i paid a quarter mil and couldn't find anywhere to fill up with natural gas :).

I'm talking about hybrids, though, there are no issues with finding gas for hybrids because they use regular unleaded. NYC is trying them, too, their main question mark is that they have less leg room than crown vics (aren't there companies that speciallize in stretching automobiles? maybe they can do that for the leg room)

This article references both:

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/8420904/

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Parents just got back from the Tokyo area. My mom was so impressed by the taxi's that she took this photo with a disposible camera. Drivers are clean cut, dressed nicely, cabs are clean, and the seats have lace covers that keep it pleasant for the passengers.

We are pigs in comparison.

taxi.jpg

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lol... there is a lot less money to be made in charlotte than tokyo on cab services.

where there is less money being made, there is less money being spent on the capital like hair cuts and seat covers.

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I was always impressed by how much pride taxi drivers in London took in their jobs. They are polite, speak English clearly, keep the cars clean and know their routes extremely well. The cars are roomy and comfortable. Apparently it takes many months of training to become a driver and it's considered an very honorable profession.

Then you have the polar opposite which is NYC cabbies. Bad or zero English, smelly cars (not to be confused with my name), lack of knowledge of the city's streets, rudeness, cramped seats, ad nauseum. All you have to do is listen to a Letterman monologue to understand. Unfortunately, like most U.S. cities, Charlotte is following this footprint.

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Never rode a taxi in Charlotte but I have done it in Raliegh a number of times. Every time, the driver was reasonably courteous, spoke reasonable english, and the cab was reasonably clean (though sometimes old.) I'm still waiting for the day when you can easily catch a cab home from the pub without having to call in advance.

One time I rode a cab in Salisbury, NC (of all places) and I ended up in a vehicle that was almost brand new, with a really friendly (and talkative) driver. The fare was cheap as dirt, too, since they were on a "zone" fare system rather than a metered system. It was like 6 bucks for a 5 mile ride. That was the best taxi experience I ever had in the US.

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Charlotte City Council passed an ordinance that would required taxi cabs to be less than 7 years old if they want to continue operating, I think that was suppose to go in effect this year or next year. However the taxi cab companies said they are not ready.

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I have had some absolutely abysmal cabs in the 8 months that I have lived in Charlotte, since I travel back and forth to the airport every week.

I have had a taxis which rattle as if they were trailing something along the road behind them.

I have had a taxi which has had so much rubbish in the trunk that I was required to put my luggage in the back seat with me.

I even had a taxi which RAN OUT OF GAS just as I got to the US Airways door at CLT...wonder what would have happened had the taxi run out of gas 1/2 way up West Boulevard.

The usual demons exist in all cabs I have been in...quite dirty and smelly, about 1/5 drivers actually bother to talk to me (might just be me), every one of them listens to public radio :)

All in all, I'd give the taxis in CLT 5/10...and that is being nice. The one good thing is that they are always on time when I call them up, but like I said, this might have something to do with me using the same company every week.

-ka

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Thanks for the input guys! Keep them coming. The more comments I receive, the better chance we have to improve the cab industry here in Charlotte (especially for the uptown area). Because of our NDA, I can't release a lot of information at this time, but I can assure you that a lot of your complaints are part of a private venture plan to turn things around in this city for the visitors and residents alike. Things such as hybrid taxis, uniformed drivers and car computers are in the works. I will see what kind of info I can share when I talk with the rest of the team.

From what I hear, by summer of next year, Charlotte will be enforcing the cab maximum age rule, but the time will go from 7 years to 10 as a compromise.

Trust me, I think the city feels the same way about the cabs as you guys do.

For those interested, the full city ordinance about our cab standards can be found here:

Charlotte Municipal Code - Chapter 22 - Private Vehicles for Hire.

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I've never had a particularly bad cab experience here...though I only use them a couple times a year....that said, I never had a particularly good experience either. I did enjoy the driver who told me that he had lost his driver's license years ealier for multiple DUIs, and driving the wrong way down a Detroit interstate.

One frustrating aspect is that they cannot be hailed in Charlotte....you must either go to a Taxi station, or call them.

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I'm surprised the cabbies make anything. Seems like during the weekday there's usually a long line of cabs on Tryon, with the drivers hanging around on the sidewalk benches, complaining about no fares. Must be boring as heck.

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I've had terrible taxi cab experiences... Several years ago when out uptown I was t-boned at the corner of Tryon and Fourth by a taxi driver who was under the influence. A month ago, I was in a taxi that ran a stop sign... At the Plaza and Commonwealth!!!! I've asked cabbies quite frankly if they were more intoxicated than me, and the reply I received... "ha ha ha ha ha"... did not make me feel like a safe passenger.

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The orange and blue ones are unmistakeable.

I haven't seen this lately, but when I first moved to Charlotte, if you were walking on Trade or Tryon at the end of the work day, cabbies would beep at you to get your attention to see if you wanted to flag them down. Very annoying. I felt like an object :).

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My taxi experiences are limited to the airport and the occasional experience of being over-served. While neither have been horrible, they weren't pleasant either. The best cabs are in Europe. As for the US, Vegas cabs are usually clean and the drivers nice (and there's always the chance of being on HBO's Taxi Cab Confessions).

The one time that stands out in my mind was from the airport. I had an Egyptian driver who berated me over the evils of the American lifestyle. He didn't get a tip.

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I'm surprised the cabbies make anything. Seems like during the weekday there's usually a long line of cabs on Tryon, with the drivers hanging around on the sidewalk benches, complaining about no fares. Must be boring as heck.

Yeah, its almost as bad as working in IT at a major bank. :lol:

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