“I wanted to shout out a thank you to this cab driver and I wish him the best”

taxi props
Photo by PoPville flickr user Casey Labrack

“Dear PoPville,

I just wanted to share a really great experience I had last night that is one of those small gestures that remind you there are really great people in this city.

I hailed a cab to go home last night and when I got in, the cab driver asked if I had cash because his credit reader was broken. My first reaction was extreme skepticism because I’ve had plenty of cab drivers lie to me about their card readers being broken in an attempt to get me to use cash so they don’t pay vendor fees. When I told him I didn’t have cash (I really didn’t), instead of getting frustrated, he said “okay, well I’ll give you a ride anyway.”

I was shocked and asked if he was serious. He said he was and he started driving. He didn’t even turn on the meter. I was so taken aback by his generosity, I said, if we see an ATM on the way, I’d be happy to stop and get some cash. We were about 3/4 of the way to my home when we did come across an ATM. He asked if I still wanted to stop and get some cash because he was fine just taking me home. I asked him to stop and picked up some cash and only then did he turn on the meter.

When we arrived at my home, he was only going to charge me for the last 1/4 of the trip when I had cash and when the meter was running. I was so appreciative that I paid for what would have been the charge for the whole trip and tipped generously on top of that. Such acts of kindness deserve recognition so I wanted to shout out a thank you to this cab driver and I wish him the best.”

14 Comment

  • ChenChen

    haha that is really nice

  • That is a great story.

  • Cab drivers are always more fun than the Uber drivers I encounter. Letting chance mediate the occasional short trip is real living! The yelp-like sword of a mutual expectation of a 5-star rating hangs heavy over the uberlife.

  • That is nice, and I don’t mean to downplay, but isn’t there some sort of law/regulation now that all DC cabs must have working credit card machines, and that if they don’t, you’re not required to pay for the ride? I might be grossly mis-remembering that though…

    • Yeah, I think that’s about right. I was reading this story thinking: “That’s all well and good, but this driver really shouldn’t be out driving if his card reader isn’t working.”

    • I haven’t actually read the law, but it sounds like the driver told the passenger he would take them free of charge–so if the law is what you think it is, it sounds like the driver was following it. Law or not, I think plenty of driver wouldn’t necessarily take a passenger who can’t pay.

    • its possible that his machine broke in the ride before that one, or earlier in the day. A credit card machine once broke in a cab while I was riding in it. Does the law say that they need to shut down when it stops working, or does it give them a time period within which it must be fixed? That said, there doesn’t seem any way to determine when it broke and hold them accountable…

  • I once had a cabbie pick me up after a rough breakup and I was pretty emotional. We chatted about it, and when we got to my apartment, he said no charge. It was really nice.

    On the other hand, I’ve also had a few cabbies proposition me, so you never know who you get.

  • On a similar note, I had a great experience similar to this with an Uber driver a few weeks ago. She was unable to find my house (I have this problem a lot), and pulled into the alley. Because she was deaf, she was unable to call and locate me. After about 10 minutes of confusion, I finally found her. She then offered to drive me across town for free because of the serious delay. I was totally taken aback, but her act of kindness made my day!

    Happy for you, and what a great cab driver!

  • I love DC cab drivers!

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