Taxi Drivers and Chauffeurs Job Description video

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Being a taxi driver or chauffer is a way to make money in between or in addition to other jobs. Some people make a career of it. In most big cities taxis and hired cars and drivers transport tourists, business people, the elderly and people who otherwise can’t or don’t drive themselves or take public transportation. So there is always a need for drivers. But it can be stressful, physically and mentally. Sometimes it can be dangerous, because taxi drivers are believed to carry cash and are targets for crime. Many cities are taking action to make this occupation safer, requiring security systems in cars for hire. Local governments issue special drivers’ licenses, sometimes called a “hack” license, for taxi drivers and chauffeurs. A training program or written exam, or both is typically required. Some taxi and limousine companies give new drivers on-the-job training, showing them how to use the meter, respond to a dispatcher and handle paperwork. Depending on the company, they might be dispatched by radio, or pick up people flagging cabs on the street. Other drivers work for corporations or individuals. About one third of taxi drivers and chauffeurs are self-employed, using their own vehicle. Good business sense and knowledge of mechanics can help keep expenses in line. You have to be able to get along with people—all kinds of people. You have to be a safe and alert driver even eleven hours into a twelve-hour shift. You’ll need a strong back for lifting luggage and sitting for hours, a good sense of direction, and a courteous demeanor to boost your income with tips. This occupation is characterized by a high rate of turnover as many people use these jobs as a stepping-stone to better paying careers in the transportation field.

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