"" Writer's Wanderings: Need A Ride? Who You Gonna Call?

Tuesday, October 02, 2018

Need A Ride? Who You Gonna Call?

Up until a couple of years ago, we called a local cab company for a ride to and from the airport when the cost of a cab was less than what parking at one of the parking lots would be for the length of our trip. That is still the formula we use in deciding to ride rather than drive. It usually works out to be a trip that is more than seven or eight nights. Rather than call a cab, now we call Uber. So far it has been a good experience and usually saves us some money as well.

So far we have had a good experience coming and going. There has always been a pickup on time and we've never had to wait too long for a ride from the airport. We haven't used the service much on our travels though as we've usually no need to because we either have transportation provided or plan to use public transportation--or of course good old shoe leather. The exception has been Tokyo several times.

When visiting with our son, we ended up taking Uber a couple of times in Tokyo because of rain showers. The service there is quite different. The driver showed up in a very nice black SUV with lace covers on the seats. He was dressed in a black suit and wore white gloves. Our son explained that the Uber drivers in Tokyo were usually people who provided limousine services and used their down time to supply Uber requests.

If you use Uber or Lyft services just be careful and use some guidelines for safety. Be sure to check your driver's license plate and name and ask him who he or she is there to pick up before you give your name. Never pay in cash. The apps automatically charge your account with the credit card you have registered. No matter what you choose, Uber, Lyft or a taxi, sit in the back and wear your seat belt if traveling alone. 

We all tend to get chatty as we ride to the airport. Try to contain yourself and talk about the weather or sports (I'd avoid politics). Don't share a lot of personal information and especially as it pertains to how long you will be gone from home and whether or not someone is watching your home. If you do mention a cruise or other tour that obviously will be a week or so, you might turn to your spouse and say that you remembered to call the police and activate a house watch. It never hurts to cover the bases.

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