Living in Chicago, I take taxis a lot. My general experience is one of dislike. Most taxi drivers in Chicago are almost oblivious to me getting into their taxi and taking me somewhere. They talk on the phone and most will not get out of the taxi to help with luggage. Whenever I tell them to take a certain route to my destination, they act as if I am interrupting them (that is, them talking on the phone).
But when it comes to paying and giving them a tip, they scowl when I give 10% (I am usually a 20% tipper for good service otherwise).
But enter Ahmed, the taxi driver I met on a recent trip to Nashville to speak at Belmont University. When he picked me up at the Marriott he asked me, “Where can I take you?” Throughout the whole trip, he was not on the phone. He tried to engage me in conversation without being intrusive. He jumped out of the taxi to get my luggage.
At the end of the trip, he asked me, “Do you need a ride back?” He then handed me his card with his cell number on it. If I would call him, he would be there in 5 minutes.
I loved his card. The title was “Self-Indulgent Yellow Cab” and on his card were phrases like:
“low prices with 15% off roundtrips”
“you can call after midnight!”
“We love u always come back sooner or later”
Needless to say I called Ahmed for the return trip and gave him a big tip. That’s what I call “BAM!-good customer service.”
Do you have any good taxi driver stories?