In one of our previous blog posts we looked at our top ten taxi talk subjects to help you get to know your fares and, hopefully, encourage them to tip you at the end of your journey. However, even though it’s always great to be able to spark up a conversation with your customers, every now and again you will find that they won’t give you the chance! In fact, there are some things that taxi drivers are asked by their customers on a regular basis, and here we look at the most popular and the best ways to answer them:
“How’s your day going?”
This is probably the most common question asked of taxi drivers by their fares, however it’s sometimes difficult to differentiate between those that are just being polite and those that actually want to know about your day. An easy way to gauge whether your fare is looking for a conversation is to provide a friendly answer and ask them about their day: if they continue the conversation and ask you more questions then you know they are up for a chat, however if they reply with a simple ‘fine thank you’ you will know that they were just being polite. However, even if your fare does want to chat make sure you don’t waffle on as it will make you look as though you are not paying enough attention to the road. Be polite but remember to always stay professional!
“How long have you been doing this?”
Being a taxi driver is something that often divides people: some think it’s something that they would never be able to do while others have seriously considered it as a career. By asking about your career your customer wants to know not just about you but also your job and what it’s really like being a taxi driver. It is therefore up to you to dispel or confirm a couple of myths such as whether you work long hours (yes), if your fares are generally difficult and whether you would recommend it to someone else. If you have been in the taxi industry for a considerable amount of time now is also a good time to show off your expertise and skills to your customers!
Everyone knows that taxi drivers can’t fully predict how busy each shift will be, however after a while you will be able to determine patterns. It’s therefore interesting to see how keen some passengers are when it comes to your ability to find fares and whether some times of the day are better than others. This question often crops up if there is a big event on or it’s a generally busy time such as a Friday or Saturday night. We are sure that during the London Olympics or last week at Ascot there were dozens of taxi drivers who were asked this question and most of which would have replied ‘yes!’
“I can’t believe the traffic!”
Even though this isn’t technically a question it’s something that deserves a reply, as generally your fare is saying this for one of two reasons: either the traffic is bad and you managed to pick them up anyway, or you have been stuck in traffic for some time. Either way, you need to make sure you acknowledge this comment as it may be the start of a complaint. If the traffic is particularly bad there isn’t much you can do, however it’s still a good idea to agree with your customer and assure them that you are doing everything you can to get them to their destination as quickly as possible.
“Can you just…”
There is no end to the requests customers make of taxi drivers, including “can you just stop here”, “can you just pull over for one minute”, “can you find me somewhere to eat” and a myriad of other weird and wonderful things. As a taxi driver it is your job to try and accommodate your customers as much as possible, however make sure you never do anything that will void your taxi insurance or end up costing you money. If it’s something little then hopefully it won’t take up too much of your time and your customer will reward you with a handsome tip!