‘Georgia Avenue Taxi’
courtesy of ‘Photos by Chip Py’
For major “party” holidays – including Halloween, St. Patrick’s Day and the Fourth of July – the Washington Regional Alcohol Program has partnered to offer free taxi rides for visitors and residents of the District. The initiative and program is designed to guarantee that there is a smart and safe way for those who celebrate the holidays with alcohol to get home.
This year, while WRAP was able to offer the program during St. Patrick’s Day, there is a chance the program will not be around come the July 4th holiday due to budget concerns:
“Many people think that SoberRide is just big-hearted cabdrivers giving people a lift,” said Kurt Erickon, president of the McLean-based organization. “In fact, it’s corporate support that pays for it. I don’t want to single anyone out, but the funding has been less because of the economic downturn. We have a $31,000 gap between revenues and the cost of cab fares.” If that $31,000 can’t be found, the program won’t be offered over the July 4 holiday, a time when tens of thousands of people flock to downtown D.C. and other locales for fireworks and picnics.
The holiday is just a few weeks away, and things are not looking good right now. Whether it’s free or not, please remember to not drink and drive any night of the year, but hopefully SoberRide can find the budget they need to create as many ways for people to get home as possible.
As long as it runs over XMas and New Years I will be happy (except the snow knocked it out one Friday evening in December last year).
I gotta ask, has anyone ever used one of these programs? I hear about them every holiday and think they are great, but I’ve never once considered using them or known anyone that has. Where is this predominantly used? I would think not in metro-accessible areas…but maybe I’m wrong.
I’ve had friends call SoberRide. Waited over an hour and a cab never showed up.
Basically, I’d rather take out the $20 from an ATM and catch my own cab.
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I’ve used SoberRide a few times and had no problems. One of my friends had a minor issue when a cabbie tried to charge her, but she was still sober enough to realize it was supposed to be a free ride.
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