Beginner's Guide To Taxi Etiquette

Nearly everyone has a need to use a taxi from time to time, whether it's a vacation or a business trip. If you live in a smaller city or normally use your car to get around, you may be on unfamiliar ground when using a taxi (from companies like Union Taxi). There are guidelines for manners that you may not be aware of if you seldom have the opportunity to practice them, so read on for the key rules of taxicab etiquette.

Calling the Cab

Hailing a cab in most larger cities is as simple as raising your arm at the curb. In some especially busy areas, and when it's raining, you may see a line forming. Be aware of these lines and don't jump in front of people to grab the first taxi that pulls up.

In small to medium sized cities or in an out-of-the-way location, you may need to call for a taxi. Many taxi companies now have apps for your smartphone, allowing you to not only request a taxi, but to monitor its progress toward you with a map.

Start with Hello

Greeting your driver with a polite "hello, how are you?" is not only good manners, but can also clue you in on how chatty your taxi driver might be. Taxi drivers can be a font of information about their city, and many enjoy talking with passengers. If you prefer a quiet ride, a few monosyllabic responses should get your message across.

Confirm the Address

Most taxi drivers know their city well, but it's impossible to have detailed knowledge of every neighborhood. When you give your driver the address, ensure that they know where it is. You yourself should know where you are going, and you should be ready to assist with a map and landmarks if necessary.

Here's a Tip

Tipping is absolutely necessary and the amount should be 10%-20% of the fare. Most taxis accept credit and debit cards and allow you to add your tip.

One final step should be to preserve a record of the taxi ride. You can take a photo of the driver's i.d., (usually clearly displayed on the dash), or snap a photo of the license plate. You will want a record in case you need to contact the taxi company later for left-behind items.

When you find yourself in need of this vital service, following the tips above should help you feel more comfortable with the unfamiliar situation of taking a taxi.