SXSW: taxi tips

We’re down to two cab companies: Austin Yellow Cab and Austin Cab. Both operations will be very busy, busy enough at some hours to keep callers holding for extended periods of time. Great numbers of cabs will be doing nothing more than shuttling back and forth between hotels and the airport. Cabs are very likely to be standing near the downtown hotels, waiting for fares who just walk up. The “time call” system allows a fare to call in advance and set a time for pick-up, even for the next day. Anyone who puts in a “time call” and does not appear on time may be prevented from asking for another, at least under the same name, address, and telephone number. My experience has always been that a cab complies with a “time call” nearly to the minute, and always within five. If you find a driver that you like, ask for his or her business card so that you may call directly and bypass any wait there may be at the dispatcher number. Tip well.

2 Comments so far

  1. CarterB (unregistered) on March 9th, 2007 @ 1:19 pm

    At 2am when SXSW is wrapping up don’t look for a cab on streets leading out of downtown but look for them on streets heading in–particularly 5th street west of congress. They will all be returning somewhat empty to get a new fare. Catching a cab on West 6th street is pretty much impossible due to it being a main one-way route away from downtown.

  2. Rantor (unregistered) on March 9th, 2007 @ 3:00 pm

    That’s excellent advice. It’s a long walk in to the Four Seasons, but there often seem to be waiting cabs there and another place where there’s very often one to be found, surprisingly, is on Neches between Fifth and Sixth, maybe because it’s a quiet street, comparatively. Sometimes a car is waiting for someone who doesn’t appear and sometimes a waiting driver can be persuaded to return for you when the fare’s been dropped off.

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