Whether you’re accustomed to taking a yellow cab daily, or perhaps an Uber, Lyft, or other taxi/ride-share program here and there – you’ve at some point encountered an unexpectedly rude driver. In fact, folks in our community have told us they’ve had such frustrating experiences so many times that they avoid taking taxis as much as possible.
Whether you like them or not, taxis are ubiquitous in many urban environments and at some point, you’ll need to jump in and take one.
We’ve put together a list of taxi etiquette rules to remember, both for taxi drivers and for you – the rider. Etiquette, like all things in life, works both ways.
For Taxi DRIVERS:
- Welcome the passenger with a warm “hello” and ask for their destination address and cross street; remember they are your customer from the moment they hail your cab to the moment they step out
- Repeat the address to the passenger, and confirm the desired street corner as you near the destination. Speak loudly to avoid miscommunication
- Ask the passenger if the temperature is acceptable, and confirm that the current background volume (radio, Taxi TV etc) is acceptable
- Drive safely, obeying traffic signals and avoid honking
- Use your mobile phone as minimally as possible while a passenger is with you
- Ensure your taxi’s bankcard system is functioning; alert riders to any issues with it upon their entering your taxi
- Do not smoke in the vehicle at any time
- Avoid using heavily scented air fresheners in your taxi. Many people are sensitive to the chemicals in these fresheners, which can cause migraines or allergic reactions to some
For Taxi RIDERS:
- Greet the driver upon entering the taxi
- Be ready to announce your intended destination’s address, and a preferred route if you have one (highways, no highways, etc). Listen to your driver’s opinion on specific routes; they have been on shift most of the day and may be aware of traffic issues or alternate routes you won’t know about
- Your driver is not a mind reader – so alert him or her to temperature and volume needs shortly after entering the taxi
- Take cups, gum, Kleenex, and other trash with you upon your exit. The taxi is someone’s workspace and a future rider’s safe space, not a trashcan
- Put on your seatbelt for the duration of the ride. Your safety is paramount
- If you are feeling ill or have motion sensitivities, alert your driver immediately if you need to pull over
- Treat the driver with the same respect as you would any other professional; you may end up riding with them again
- Upon reaching your destination, pay your bill promptly and tip appropriately. 15% is acceptable for most rides, although late nights rides or heavy rain/snow conditions justify an additional few dollars in tip
Do you agree with these basic considerations? Tell us on Twitter @nycimageacademy
- What does your taxi etiquette say about your personal and professional brand? Find out more at our next “3 Steps To a Winning Personal Brand” class on February 20th in New York City. www.nycimageconsultantacademy.com