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McCarran Airport Cab Ride Survival Strategies

Discussion in 'Getting There & Getting Around' started by La$Vega$, Apr 27, 2014.

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  1. La$Vega$

    La$Vega$ Low-Roller

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    I thought I'd share this advice I read on another site.
    Originally, posted on HAWJOHN's thread, but did not want to hijack it and that thread is golden in it's own right!
    What I liked about this was that it was from an insider's perspective, the cabbie.
    Just about everyone that cabs it has been had at some point, myself included.
    Experienced or not, get distracted for 1 second and WHAM!
    However, as this story unfolds, there are diamonds in the rough like the author RustyChops41

    McCarran Airport Survival Strategies
    'Tips From An Honest (Cab) Driver'

    I am an honest cab driver, been driving over 5 years. All of these are good posts. The magic word really is "tunnel" because when you say that word the crooked cabbie knows that you know the game. (They call it "tunneling," people in the break room, where every night it's like sitting around a camp fire listening to "Fish Stories" about how they cheated people all day.) If ANY vital info in the cab is covered up by Post-It notes or family photos (I.E. their ID #, their picture or name, etc), call the TA (Taxicab Authority) and report it, and rest assured it is probably a red flag that he/she is a crook.

    Also, and I hate to paint with a broad brush here, but try to avoid Desert Cab Co (white with orange stripes) and Nellis Cab Co (white with aqua blue fenders) as they are by far the worst, although any company has too many crooks. The side streets to request are Koval Lane, or Swenson/Paradise. But even then, drivers have figured out how to long haul you even without the tunnel. If you arrive at the new terminal 3 and say "no tunnel" or "please use the streets" they will still try to scam you out of about $2 by taking the long way to Swenson Street. As you head west back toward the old terminal (and see Mandalay Bay ahead) make sure the driver stays to the RIGHT and takes the CLEARLY MARKED SIGN "Swenson" which curves right and dumps you right onto Swenson. To cheat you, they will stay to the LEFT and go back toward the tunnel, then turn right at the light onto Swenson, but about 3/4 a mile further south than you should already be had they stayed right. Even bolder crooks will take you EAST out of terminal 3 towards SPENCER street which sounds a lot like Swenson St, but will add even more $$ to your no-tunnel ride.

    Another easy extra dollar they steal is by taking Paradise TOO FAR NORTH so as to double back to your hotel. If you are going to Venetian, Palazzo, Harrah's, The Quad, Mirage, or Caesars Palace, they should turn onto Flamingo and take it to the Strip for Caesars and the Mirage, or go right at Koval for the back way into the others. Going up Paradise all the way to Sands/Twain means you are being long hauled because they will have to go back south to get to your destination.

    And for any downtown destination: taking the freeway into downtown can make sense, although the tunnel is still a rip off. Swenson to Tropicana, then to I-15 and downtown is OK. But here's where almost any trip downtown turns into a long haul. The driver should exit at Charleston Blvd and go into downtown from Main St or 4th Street. Instead they will stay on I-15, connect to I-95 south, and go around the north end of downtown, adding about $5 or more to the trip. (Pay attention @kippaxcol, this will save you money).

    Hope these tips help even more. And by all means PLEASE call the authorities when you've been ripped off. Apathy is what makes honest cab drivers lose their jobs to these crooks, I don't know how I've survived over 5 years while being honest. Thanks for your time.

    Thank you, @RustyChops41, for taking to time to share this advice!
    (reprinted from Vegas Chatter)

    Nevada Taxicab Authority: http://taxi.nv.gov/
    Complaints
    Call Dispatch @ (702) 668-4005 or send email to [email protected].
     
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2014
  2. luci5

    luci5 Low-Roller

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    Thanks for posting. Some interesting comments there on still being long hauled even if you ask for Swenson.

    We were long hauled in a similar fashion a few years ago. I had asked the driver to take Swenson as soon as we got in the cab. We were going to the IP. The droved right past the rear entrance, kept going and went as far as the back of the Venetian before he finally turned around and took us back. Unfortunately I had just started to become ill with food poisoning and was in no fit state to question him. We paid the fare as I couldn't get out of the cab fast enough.

    I don't really pay attention to which direction the cab takes as it leaves the airport as I am not familiar with that area, but will try to remember to see if he take the right or left lane to Swenson.
     
  3. william142

    william142 Tourist

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    I don't know why anyone allows themselves to be long-hauled. It seems just in general people are sheep and don't like confrontation. I was in Vegas earlier this month and was getting longed hauled from the Monte Carlo to Harrah's. I took a picture of his driver info and told him to turn the meter off or I would call the taxi cab authority. Of course he did as he knew he had long-hauled me. Anytime I have ever threaten to call Las Vegas Metro (Police) or the taxi authority, they have always backed down. No one should put up with being long-hauled ever! There is no way any cab driver will say lets wait for the police or for the taxi authority to show up because that is 30 minutes or longer of them not getting fares, which they need for survival.
     
  4. La$Vega$

    La$Vega$ Low-Roller

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    Just about everyone gets LH'ed, once!
    For all those that cab it and get LH'ed, putting your foot down etc. like you william is a good thing (while at your final destination).
    I do think it's important (even if you settle w/driver) to report the incident for the good of the whole.
    I never had any reason to go on the Taxi Cab Authority site before, but upon looking at it, it is chock full of usefull information:
    http://taxi.nv.gov/Complaints/Complaints

    [​IMG]
    Right off the NTA web site:
    In order for the Taxicab Authority to process or investigate the incident, you must include:

    • Your name
    • Date of the incident
    • Time of the incident
    • Place where incident occurred
    • Cab company name
    • Physical description of the taxicab (click here to view taxicab photos)
    • Cab number
    • What occurred that brought you to file this complaint/incident report
    • Names and contact information for any witnesses

    It would also be helpful for you to include:

    • The driver's name
    • The driver's Taxicab Authority Permit number
    • Physical description of the driver and any other participants in the incident

    Complaint/Incident Affidavit

    Click below for the COMPLAINT/INCIDENT AFFIDAVIT
    Victim of Longhauling?

    Note: Your driver may not take a longer route to your destination than is necessary, unless specifically requested by the passenger. (NRS 706.8846)
    Complaint Incident Affadavit: http://taxi.nv.gov/Complaints/complaint_form/Complaint/Incident_Affidavit/
    (you can fill this out in one minute online!)
     
  5. melbedewy

    melbedewy Low-Roller

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    The magic word is "shuttle".
     
  6. Sklem211

    Sklem211 High-Roller

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    The word shuttle makes me shutter.

    I don't want to overpay for my trip to the hotel, but I don't want it to take over an hour to get there as well.
     
  7. farkingidiot

    farkingidiot High-Roller

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    Thanks so much for sharing La$vega$. :thumbsup:

    I got long hauled for the first time last trip. I went from being incredulous, to pissed to amused. I wanted to see just how off track he would take me.

    I was staying at Encore, on my way to the airport. Of course, the quickest way is pretty much taking Paradise the whole way. Which way did my guy take me? I-15 to Tropicana. Take a minute a mapquest google routes to the airport from Encore. Yup, he took me out a route that covers 5 and a half miles, when the typical route only covers 3.6 miles. He added TWO MILES to my route to get to the airport!

    When I realized what was happening, I wrote down all his information off his ID card, then I told him, "If you're done giving me a tour of Las Vegas, I need you to take me to the airport. I have a plane to catch. I know you are long hauling me." He immediately turned off the meter and told me he'd get me there and onyl charge me twenty bucks. I told him that's all he's getting anyway.

    I reported him to the Taxi Authority and contacted his cab company by snail mail. I got repsonses from both, saying something would be done. What was done, i don't know, but I at least felt like I took some power back.
     
  8. La$Vega$

    La$Vega$ Low-Roller

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    Heard that everyone,
    We usually make a week+ on our visits so for us it makes sense to rent.
    Make sure you read HAWJOHN's thread and discuss the long hauling there.

    I posted this from VegasChatter in order to show the perspective and help those long hauled to go through the correct procedures to report the culprits.
    The honest taxi drivers need us to do this. It gives them a bad name.

    And it is so easy to report them online per-above
    -----------------------
    Complaint/Incident Affidavit

    Click below for the COMPLAINT/INCIDENT AFFIDAVIT
    Victim of Longhauling?

    Note: Your driver may not take a longer route to your destination than is necessary, unless specifically requested by the passenger. (NRS 706.8846)
    Complaint Incident Affadavit: http://taxi.nv.gov/Complaints/compla...ent_Affidavit/
    (you can fill this out in one minute online!)
     
  9. luci5

    luci5 Low-Roller

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    We were also leaving from the Encore to go to the airport early on a quiet Sunday morning. The cab driver asked if we wanted to take the freeway as the strip was busy. I said no thank you and that we were in no hurry. The strip was dead, but at least she asked first. I can't remember at which point we turned off the strip.
     
  10. Viva Las Vegas

    Viva Las Vegas Ramblin' Gamblin' Man

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    I'm not disputing the accuracy of this advice, but I always drove this way from MB or other points on the strip (Industrial to 15 to 95/downtown), which saves a few minutes from surface streets. Wouldn't doubt extra distance is added, but I'm surprised it's $5+, especially since you aren't wasting time at lights between Charleston and Fremont.

    This is true. Prior to this board or much Vegas research via the internets, my brother and I were long hauled to The Orleans, via the tunnel and IIRC he drove all the way to 215 before exiting Tropicana and returning back to Orleans (or perhaps he got off at Rainbow).

    I believe the fare was $36 and we didn't tip as I knew instinctively they screwed us based on a discussion w/ a co-worker before the trip. Have never taken a cab from the airport since, and only take a cab if I know exactly where I'm going and give directions to the driver. He didn't say a word at the lack of tip. It's the only time I ever recall not tipping a cab driver.
     
  11. La$Vega$

    La$Vega$ Low-Roller

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    We too were Longhauled....lol, sounds like LH anonymous

    Viva: To be quite honest, I did not study the information. I read through it and it seemed logical. I'd suggest everyone study the local maps prior to their rides.

    If you do cab it, make this a must read & bookmark http://taxi.nv.gov/

    On our first trip I do recall the tunnel, but back then we didn't think twice about it. I mean it's your first time in Vegas, right!
    Well, a few other attempts and you learn.

    I know we take Koval, Paradise & Industrial (and other time, not distance) etc. shortcuts when we rent.
    Rarely will we go into traffic unless necessary and we are usually coming home when everyone is getting up :whistle:
     
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2014
  12. La$Vega$

    La$Vega$ Low-Roller

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  13. Sinatraatthesands

    Sinatraatthesands Low-Roller

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    Nothing was done. it wasn't even mentioned to the driver by either. You need to call the TA and have them come to the scene. How do I know this? Let's just say I do know this is a fact.
     
  14. leepinlizard

    leepinlizard Newbie

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    Well, just got back from Vegas yesterday. Lost a chunk 'o change, but had a great time. Stayed at Rio.

    The trip started off a bit rough though. Get to the airport, got my bag and hopped in a cab. The driver was nice and cheery welcomed me to Vegas. We were chit chatting away and then I knew why. I had never been "tunneled" before and had been to Vegas around 10 times or so. We went into the tunnel and I was stunned. I asked the driver "Are these the tunnels you aren't supposed to take me through?" He said, "Oh, I take this route so I don't have to mess with the traffic." I told him that if this fare is over $17 we have a problem. :grrr:He shut up big time. Didn't say another word. We go round and round the streets, past In-n-Out, loop around onto the highway and I notice the fare going up close to $20 and the Rio is nowhere in sight. I pulled out my phone and said I'm making that call right now. He reached up & shut the meter off completely & said we'll keep it at $17. 10 minutes later we pull into the Rio. I gave him his $17 and he took off. I had some other choice words words that I won't put in here, but I wasn't about to get screwed over at the beginning of the trip. I didn't want to take the time to file a report or take his info. I just wanted to get to the Rio to start the games. Don't let this happen to you and stand up for yourself folks!:beer:
     
  15. jbee

    jbee Low-Roller

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    Just to add something to this post. I always have a car but after a few brewskies, a cab is in order. About 1 1/2 years ago we went from PHO to MGM for a concert. I told the cabbie twice, and was loud enough, to not take the Strip as we had just come from there and it was a madhouse. Traffic was backing up for the concert already. Yep, he turned right towards the strip. I was adamant that he should turn and take other route. He was busy talking on his phone and acted like he ignored me. This was before I've read from others on this board. After the rest of our group got into the bitching mood, he finally turned off the meter when we turned off the Strip onto Tropicana. Later I told a person that hails cabs at a resort and his reply was that was also against the taxicab authority. We should not have to go through all this.
     
  16. luci5

    luci5 Low-Roller

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    Just taken a cab from the airport to Harmon. I asked the driver to take Swenson rather than my usual "no tunnel thanks" and he took us directly.

    The fare was a couple of dollars less than last year, but this year we arrived at T1 and last year it was T3 so I don't know if that would have made the difference.

    No chat or anything, but he still got a 25% tip.
     
  17. La$Vega$

    La$Vega$ Low-Roller

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    Good to stand your ground, but not sure if you should do it in transit as there are other horror stories out there and you really don't know who is at the wheel. I'd wait until you get to your destination and then let them know what you will pay them. In addition, let them know you are going to be contacting the Nevada Taxicab Authority.
    Longhaulee's should start doing some video taping of these crooks and it would help put an end to it. Call the valet or security over for help.
    (not sure on the legal ramifications and while I am not suggesting any legal advice, I did stay at a holiday Inn last night :wink)

    Note: Your driver may not take a longer route to your destination than is necessary, unless specifically requested by the passenger. (NRS 706.8846)

    Record:
    • Day/date/time
    • Cab Company, Cab Number, NV license plate if known
    • Name and/or Permit Number of Driver, if known
    • Location of pick up
    • Destination Location

    STATE OF NEVADA
    DEPARTMENT OF BUSINESS AND INDUSTRY
    TAXICAB AUTHORITY

    1785 E. Sahara Avenue, Suite 200
    Las Vegas Nevada 89104
    Telephone (702) 668-4000 • Fax (702) 668-4001
    Long Route Voluntary Witness Statement

    Go on this site: http://taxi.nv.gov/Complaints/Complaints/ click on the top tab Complaints and file the form online.
    Report them! It's like getting robbed, over & over again.
    Certainly demand the correct fee for the haul, but report the culprits!
     
  18. lasvegas_limo_driver

    lasvegas_limo_driver Vegas Guru at Infinity

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    Some of the problem is that calling the TA is that people dont want to wait for them or the cabbie just tells you no problem, i cover and then they leave. If you see hes longhauling you, take a picture oh his placard, its always on the dash, and the cab company and cab number. Take a picture of the meter when he hits the button to. Granted alot of the time nothing will be done, but as more and more complaints and evidence then they do put notices to cab companies about drivers. There are alot of good driver's out there, its sad that those bad ones give the good ones a bad name.
     
  19. alana86

    alana86 Low-Roller

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    What is the fastest way to ask a taxi to go to get to Aria? We are arriving around 8:30 p.m on a Saturday night.

    Thanks!
     
  20. lasvegas_limo_driver

    lasvegas_limo_driver Vegas Guru at Infinity

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    Right now I would say Swenson, paradise to Harmon.
     
    Last edited: May 3, 2014
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