Travel safety tips for taxi passengers

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Whether it is a ride to the airport, work or home from a night out in one of the Cheltenham Nightclubs, all we really want is a safe and timely taxi journey for a fair price. Government guidelines recommend that we only take black cabs in London and other major cities, or pre-booked taxis in the rest of the country; however, it can be tempting to take a taxi that is waiting on the street, especially if you are not alone. Here are some safety tips for you to consider next time you need a taxi.

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Don’t get caught out

There are plenty of tricks and many of us have been caught out; for example, sometimes an unregistered taxi can look legitimate. You see the company name but once you are inside you realise that the driver doesn’t know the local area, the interior is scruffy or smells unpleasant, and you can’t see a taxi licence. Safety guidelines have been issued to check the legitimacy of a taxi, which you can read here.

What about Uber?

You have probably heard that black cabs are up in arms about Uber taxis stealing their business, which is a serious issue for both taxis and passengers. Uber argues that its taxis are the safest, as the company’s app tracks the journey, the car and the money; however, in some countries the company has been banned for storing credit card details centrally and linking approval to the customer’s phone, with a stolen phone potentially meaning free taxi journeys.

Pre-booked taxis are the safest option

Pre-booking a taxi means that a taxi company sends a known driver. When making a booking with a taxi company it is simple to check that the driver is legitimate. When your taxi arrives you will be able to see the licence and ID and you can ask the driver what name the booking is in. You can also establish the price of a pre-booked taxi when you call or email.

The passenger’s responsibilities

Your safety in a pre-booked taxi is still a joint effort. You might be with a professional driver but it is important to wear your seatbelt and to remember that you should never distract the driver from the road, drink alcohol in the taxi, or try to get out before the driver has stopped.

Follow these simple rules and every taxi ride will go smoothly.

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