How do you Handle Rude Taxi Drivers?

Time for a reality check! And when I need one, who better to check with than TWG readers? Here’s the backstory. I have a taxi service I use to go to the airport. I’ve been using the same one for a few years now because they give me a great flat rate fee, and up until recently, I haven’t had an issue with them. The company always sends different drivers and it’s always worked well. Drivers are always on time and the cars are generally in good enough shape.

Image source: http://www.universaltaxidispatch.com/blog/2015/01/dealing-with-rude-cabbie-drivers/

Last week, during the early morning hours, my taxi ride started out fine. A few minutes into the ride, the driver turned on the radio and the news came on. I don’t like listening to news, especially early in the morning. Not my preferred way to start the day. The friend I was with politely asked him to turn off the radio explaining about not liking to listen to the news. At this point, we were maybe 10 minutes away from the airport. He said no because he likes to listen to the radio when he drives. I said that we were the customers and it was only for a few minutes until we got to the airport. He didn’t offer to find a station with music. He wanted his station. He did turn off the radio, but then he started talking non-stop about politics and about how he’d been driving for 40 years and no one ever asked him to turn off the radio. Then he started talking about how taxes were so high and on and on he went. It was obvious that this was the payback for asking him to please turn off the radio.

This pissed me off. I opened my window preferring the fresh air and noise of traffic to his talking. At one point, he closed my window and I opened it again and told him I needed the air. When we got to the airport, I decided to call the taxi company and let them know what happened. Also, the driver did not wear his seatbelt, so the reminder noise was dinging. I can only imagine what would have happened if I’d asked him to put on his seatbelt.

So I need a reality check. Am I off-base here expecting that if the radio is on and as the paying customer I politely ask a driver to turn it off, the driver will turn it off? I’ve asked drivers to please turn down air conditioning or to open windows and it’s never been an issue. And as an aside, I had already paid the fare and tipped him $3. I’d like to know your thoughts on my experience. Thanks!

15 thoughts on “How do you Handle Rude Taxi Drivers?

  1. LARRY

    You should always take care of the customer, but life seems too short to let little stuff like this bother you. This guy would have been out of your life in 10 more minutes…

    Reply
    1. Shelli Post author

      True enough, Larry, and I agree. I do think there’s an art to handling these situations and I’d like to be more of an artist and learn from how others would have handled things. Thanks for reading and taking the time to comment.

      Reply
  2. Wes

    Agree with commenter Larry. This was poor customer service. That said, reading between the lines, it appears that what ticked you off to the point of making a blog post over this is that you were “triggered” by the driver’s politics, and likely the politics of the radio station he had on. Am I close?

    Reply
    1. Shelli Post author

      Had nothing to do with his politics, Wes. It was his lack of customer courtesy and obvious obnoxiousness by talking the whole time. I open my window and he closes it…….that was a first. Also, I had paid my fare AND tipped him before the ride even started. I also think there was some gender power dynamic going on with him.

      Reply
  3. Christian

    You shouldn’t have to deal with any of the driver’s weirdnesses, let alone that many. You were nicer than I would have been. The guy obviously needs employment in another field.

    Reply
    1. Shelli Post author

      Since this is a company I often use and they know who I am, I did call them and request they never send me this driver again. Thanks for the reality check, Christian!

      Reply
  4. Alex

    I think its important to make it clear that you are being put upon. But the ultimate way to get even is to call the company and explain your displeasure. They don’t care at all about your specific experience. But if they keep getting calls, and they will with this jerk, then they will grow weary of hearing crap about the guy and lean on him.

    Reply
  5. henry LAX

    i just return the favor

    once a vegas cab driver bxxxched i didn’t tip enough when we arrived airport curb side, and said i can go pick up the luggage myself

    so i did that, and left both the trunk and passenger doors open, and told him he can come close it himself

    Reply
    1. Shelli Post author

      Wow, Henry, that is really weird. Quick thinking on your part. Maybe this guy was annoyed at my tip because I tipped ahead of time. I tipped him $3 on a 20$ fare, which I thought was fine.

      Reply
  6. Fonzi

    I simply do not understand why you tip him when you was not satisfied and now you complain. Makes no sense.

    Reply
    1. Shelli Post author

      I think you misread, Fonzi. I paid my fare and tipped BEFORE we started out to the airport. I always do that with this company to save myself time when I get to the airport.

      Reply
  7. Pingback: Are Taxis Obsolete?

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