THE AIRPORT

…there are some things in life I consider to be "basics"…suffice to say that when someone calls you for a ride to the airport - - it's USUALLY to catch a plane.  Included in that BASIC fact is that as important as you may be - that said plane is NOT going to wait for you. Furthermore, it can be safely assumed that when you request a ride at ___ pm - then it's quite important that your ride to the airport be there at said time.

AUTHOR NOTE: If you are going to the airport, tell the person on the other end of the phone line that is your destination. Cabdrivers generally like airport rides and this will increase the chances of smooth coordination with your travel plans.

My plane landed at SFO just after midnight and BART no longer ran so I was forced to take a cab. First off we had to wait for cabs. I live close to the airport (about five miles away) and when I told the driver where I was going he complained about it being too short of a fare…

AUTHOR NOTE: The above person got caught in one of the quirks of the airport system. Journeys from the Airport are not randomly distributed which means that certain types of trips both in terms of location happen at certain times. The taxi system at the airport generally compensates to even out the flow & length of trips but one that doesn’t get offset is a trip to one of the cities on the peninsula between Foster City-Redwood City and South San Francisco that takes place after mid-night. If you get lucky and get a trip back to San Francisco, you finish your shift without a long empty drive when you’re most tired. If you end-up going on a short trip down the peninsula and you are near the end of your shift, you have a long empty drive home and you might end-up having to pay a late charge.

…needing a ride to the airport, and not trusting xxx response that they are sending a cab out, I started picturing horrific scenarios of my boyfriend missing his flight (and it being all my fault since he assigned to me what should have been a simple task of calling a cab for him) or almost worse, having to drive him to the airport in my pajamas in a mad rush later on. I figured it was better to call 2 cabs, assuming that xxx's will never show up anyhow.  I called --- Cab, and noticed two immediate differences…First - someone answers the phone. With xxx, I had to listen to a ridiculous message for the first 30 seconds prior to even being connected…At ---, a kind voice answered the phone. Second - I told him where I needed a cab and explained that I needed it right now, and while I was still on the phone - I heard him radio the cabbies asking who will be going to my address.  He asked, and kept on asking until someone replied and I was assured that a taxi was on its way now.  I asked how long it would be, and he said approximately 10 minutes…Ten minutes later, a cab was in front of my building, as promised. Up to this point, it was a perfect experience. Now, I did not take the cab myself…this was for Mr. R - and upon arrival at the airport, he calls me and the following conversation ensues:

G: "You made it!  They got here on time?" 
R: "Yeah - they called while I was in the elevator down... perfect timing but GOOD GOD!" 
G:  (dreadful) "WHAT?" 
R: "I have no idea how a cab could stink of urine that much!"  G: "…urine?"  R: "Urine!  Even if people peed in the cab for a year, I don't think it could stink that much!" 
G: "…wow…oh, that sucks…but at least it got you to the airport." 
R: "Yeah - but I have never smelled anything like this…I can still smell it!"

So close to a 5-star experience…The cab we ended up with was merely one of however many they have. I have hailed --- Cabs before, so I am certain that this is not the company "norm". During my moment of need, the dispatcher pulled through with flying colors and got someone here on time, and the passenger DID get to the airport ON TIME and in one piece, albeit reeking of urine… 

…they were supposed to be here at 7:15 to pick my fiancé up to get to SFO, I called they said they would be here. I called again at 7:20 and they hadn’t even dispatched a cab. I heard the woman dispatcher asking who could be there the fastest. The fastest turns out to be 7 minutes.
Ten minutes later and Michael is still standing on the curb and I am scrambling to find a cab for him. Maybe I’ll just drive him…ok they just came…UPDATE! So just got the call from the airport- " What type of company did you call- they were HORRIBLE)…cab STUNK like smoke…THEY DO NOT TAKE CREDIT CARDS! - this was my ONE stipulation and first question I asked the dispatcher…when they  were late the dispatcher (who according to the cabbie only works Mondays and keeps messing up)  said they were sooo busy. First thing the cabbie says to Michael is that he is having a "slow" morning…

I've ridden --- Cabs many times throughout my life in the City, but this was the first time I called to order a cab for the airport. The dispatcher was very friendly and considerate. I didn't feel rushed and there wasn't an attitude like many other cab companies I have called in the past…I even asked for a credit card taking cab and they said, "No problem." Sweet. Music to my ears. It makes expensing things a whole helluva lot easier.