Archive for tips

$20 to go…

Posted in Driving Basics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 10, 2011 by HackingVegas

First call of a VERY slow morning was a no go. Normally I get pissed when that happens but this time it turned out to be the best call I’ve had in a while.


I pull up to this little dive bar in North Las Vegas where I pick up at least ten times a week. They never go far but a ride is a ride. The bartender pokes his head out and asks me to give him a minute and he’ll get the guy out soon. It was slow that morning so I sat and waited.

Soon the door flew open and a guy comes stumbling out. He holds the railing on the walkway heading to the cab. As the rail ends he makes a leap of faith toward the cab and falls up against it. He opens the door and leans in asking in a the most slurred drunken voice I’ve heard in a while, “how much does it cost NOT to go home?” I said, “I don’t know, if you want to give me $10 for wasting my time that would be cool”. He said, “no problem” and reaches in his wallet and started digging for the money. The bartender was standing behind him the whole time and tells him, “NO, you’re cut off. If you think you’re going to stay here you’re paying him $20 or I’m not letting you back in”. The guy got pissed and had a few choice words for the bartender but promptly handed me a $20 bill.

He then told the bartender to take him back in and stop being a jackass.

Off they went and so did I with the meter shorted but my pocket a little fatter. So if anyone is ever wondering how much it costs to not go home, it’s now $20 if you call my cab.


To Speak Or Not To Speak, That Is The Question

Posted in Driving Basics, Random Info with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 22, 2011 by HackingVegas

Cab drivers wear many hats throughout the day. Much like bartenders, we hear and see it all. When I first started driving I thought my gift to gab would be one of my best assets. I could talk to anyone. I had enough knowledge about most topics that I could bullshit my way through any ride. It didn’t take long for me to fit right in as a seasoned hack in Vegas. I could tell you almost anything you wanted. If I didn’t know the right answer I made it up, sold it hard and looked up the info later. Oh wait, did I just give away a hack secret?

Time went on and I found myself becoming a different person with different backgrounds depending on who sat in the seat. I did well with this and made a good amount of side money because of my out going and all-knowing personality. I would have a fare sit in the cab and would bombard them with a series of questions to feel out who I needed to be to relate best with them. I would then get into that character and life went on like that for five to ten minutes at a time.

All was going well until I came I to work one day, I’m assuming sleep deprived, and just not in the mood to deal with anyone. I got my first fare and I don’t even think I said good morning. I simply asked “where to” and drove off not speaking a syllable until I got to the drop off point and told them the fare amount. I put my hand out and waited for some remark about my lack of personality and them to give me $13 on a $12.90 fare and ask for their dime back. But to my amazement, it was the exact opposite. I was handed a 20 and told to have a good day.

I sat there for a second trying to figure out what just happened and chalked it up to the fact that they must have just been nice. I got back into the cab and went to pick up my next fare. Still not being in the mood to deal with people, I treated the them the same and yet I got the same response. Ok this is just a fluke. No way am I making more money by not saying a word to these people. As the day went on, about 25 of the 30 fares that day gave me at least an $8 tip.

Being very confused as to what had happened that day, I got on the phone and called the wife. After braking the day down for her I hear a slight giggle roar of laughter coming through the phone. Not understanding what’s so funny about this, I asked why she was laughing? She replies simply,

Wife:     I’ve been telling you this forever. Just shut your big damn mouth.
Me:       What are you talking about?
Wife:     The more you talk, the less we listen. You talk too much and your fares  obviously think so too. So do us all a favor and shut your trap and make us some damn                             money.

Taken back from this news that the wife thinks I talk too much, (I swear I’ve never heard her say that before) I hang up the phone and start thinking. Is this true? Can I make more money by shutting up? I need to test this. Over the following weeks I tried talking to my fares and not talking to my fares to get a good average. And what do you know? I made more money by not trying to become who I thought they wanted me to be and by not making crap up as I go.  Nope! I made more money just sitting in the driver’s seat and driving.

Now of course this didn’t stop me from talking, but when I complained about have a slow tip day to the wife I would get the same response every time. SHUT YOUR DAMN MOUTH! I love her. Over the years I’ve found a good happy medium on talking. The made up stories are out the window for the most part and only used when a fare wants a good story that I just don’t have. I now read people to see if they are wanting to talk or not. But over the years I’ve found myself hiding in the residential dealing with locals.

Who Doesn’t Believe in Karma

Posted in Driving Basics with tags , , , , , , , , on December 5, 2010 by HackingVegas

This morning I had a fare that needed to go get her meds filled and told me up front she had $8. I knew they round trip was going to be a little more then that. I told her we’ll make it work. We started talking and I found out that her husband just pased (she was at least 90) and her kids left town for the week and she forgot to have them get her meds. At the end of the trip I knew she didn’t have a lot of money. I told her to keep her money for the night on the town I knew she was going to take while her kids were gone. She busted out laughing like I’ve never heard an old lady do. After trying to get me to take it she finally said “Good luck in life and may Karma be on your side.”
The day went on as many others do until I got a short run to the airport. He was flying a little airline that most people have never heard of unless they fly to your area or your a random knowledge whore like myself. We started talking about the airline and he was talking bad about some of it’s fees that are not normal, and the way it takes advantage of it passengers. I came to the airlines defense and debated him on business logic and what I feel is right and wrong. We sat in front of the terminal for about 5 minutes finishing this debate (friendly of course). When all was said and done he gave me a nice hand shake and said “thanks, you are a very down to earth thinker and you know how to state your points. My name is Mr. …… and I’m the CEO of ……. Airlines. You’ve made my point better then most of my employees do. Thank you”. I pulled my hand back and looked at what he palmed. He simply said have a Merry Christmas.

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