How much to start a new Taxi Company in DC

Johnny cash

Well-Known Member
If all 35 of us here on this forum got together, we should have the capital. However, I question roadman's customer service skills if we did start a new taxi company
 

Nats121

Well-Known Member
The taxi industry is one of the most corrupt industries in both the US and the world.

In the vast majority of places in the US, the only way to get taxi permits is to buy them from someone. Before Uber got big, NYC taxi permits were selling for over $1 million.

DC was one of the very few places in the US that didn't restrict the number of taxis, so permits were not bought or sold.

About 8 years ago there was test cheating scandal, and DC suspended the issuing of new permits.

I don't think there's been any new permits issued since. Maybe someone on this blog knows for certain.

Before Uber, the going rate in Arlington was about $30,000 for a permit.
 

Another Uber Driver

Well-Known Member
Moderator
The taxi industry is one of the most corrupt industries in both the US and the world.

In the vast majority of places in the US, the only way to get taxi permits is to buy them from someone.

DC was one of the very few places in the US that didn't restrict the number of taxis, so permits were not bought or sold.

About 8 years ago there was test cheating scandal, and DC suspended the issuing of new permits.

I don't think there's been any new permits issued since. Maybe someone on this blog knows for certain.
(emphasis added)

Finally, someone who understands that Big Taxi in the District of Columbia is urban myth; literally and figuratively.

I will start with an answer to the Original Poster's question.

Currently, you can not start a new cab company in the District of Columbia. You can buy an existing company, but you can not start a new one. There are more than a few of the owners out there who will sell, but some of them want too much. You can get one for as little as one-hundred thousand dollars or you could pay as much as several million, depending on what you want. If you want one of the little ones that is little more than a colour scheme and a glorified leasing company, you can pay the minimum. If you want one of the Big Two, you will pay several million. For the right price, one of the Big Two's Ownership might be willing to sell.

I know one that has a dispatch service that you might be able to get for just under half a million. It is pretty messed up, though. The decline started with the Ownership that was treating it like something to be milked. The real fall began when several of us sold out and it went to the control of one family that had been there in the early days (1920s). The Principal stockholder was far advanced in age and he appointed a Management that was the most incompetent ever. The last straw was when the Principal stockholder died and his family sold it to this guy who had no business running a cab company. The company is still there, but it is a wonder that it is. This guy has about four hundred grand in it, but he owes several hundred grand to various creditors. He will try to get what he has in it plus paying off his creditors. It would not be worth it.

I might be able to get some better information on what it would cost you, if you are serious. If nothing else, I do know the company, what is left of it and most of the drivers that are left, and there ain't many of them.

You could get one of the cheaper companies and sign up with this one dispatch service who takes anybody who will pay. The aforementioned service does a large business with METRO Access, but, as that contract is renewable periodically, there is a danger of his losing it.

The whole thing on the restrictions started back in the late 1990s. There were periods where the City was not issuing hack licences. By the early 2000s they had, indeed, totally shut off the hack licences due to the test's being compromised. Except for a brief sixty day period, no new hack licences were issued between 2002 and 2010. What was really funny was that during the Administration of His Exalted Supremacy, Adri-Amin Felonty, the number of cabs on the street increased by a factor that was noticeable even to the most casual observer. This occurred while there were no new hack licences issued by the City. What happened was that the number of unlicenced drivers increased markedly.

There were credible suggestions surfacing that there was this one guy from out of town, who ran a taxi related business, who was trying to take over the City's taxi business. D.C. was the last frontier where the business was largely in the hands of the owner-operators. He brought in these illegal drivers to sully even further the reputation of the City cab drivers and get the meters into the cabs. The Zone System was one thing that had kept out the Big Money. This guy made "arrangements" with various officials and got the meters. Sadly for him (but not for us), Dear Revered Leader Kin il-Fenty got "primaried".

The new Administration got things started back to order by having Enforcement go after the illegals and get them off the street. While this was going through the process, Uber appeared and attracted a number of illegal cab drivers who could get the financing for a Town Car.

Meanwhile, the City Council suddenly wondered why there were no new hack licences being issued. There was on and off issuance of them once the City Council became involved. Once the meters appeared, it was no longer necessary to test the calculation of fares. These days, the stress is on regulations; geography is not that much stressed. The way that they stop the issuance of hack licences now is that DFHV tells UDC not to teach the Cab School Class. You can not get a hack licence without completing and passing Cab School. Currently, UDC is not teaching the class.

DFHV is not issuing new vehicle certificates, either, unless you buy an accessible or pure electric. There are grants available to purchase an accessible,. The TNCs are funding said grants through the one per-cent tax that they pay to the City for each trip that begins or ends in the District of Columbia. This is one reason why Uber was meeting the accessible demand through the Uber Taxi platform in this market. It figured that since it was paying for many of these accessibles, it ought to get some use out of them. I am hard put to blame Uber for that one. Uber is beginning to offer accessible service for UberX rates, as some do-gooders sued them. I understand that it is having difficulty finding drivers willing to do the trips, despite its willingness to finance the vehicles.

There have been incidents of the selling of hack licences. The then Office of Taxicabs was selling them to people who could not pass the test or the School or simply did not want to be bothered with either.

It is obvious that the then Taxicab Commission or Office of Taxicabs was selling vehicle licences between 2011 and 2015, when there was a freeze on vehicle licences. I know several company owners who were putting new (new to them, that is) vehicles on the street with new H plates, despite the supposed freeze. The only way that they could have obtained those H plates was by making "arrangements".

In theory and on paper, the market is still open entry both for driver licences and vehicle licences. In practice, it is not.

no cancel fee with taxi

We used to get a dismissal if we responded to a call and the people did not use the cab. It was pretty difficult to collect it, but the law did permit you to do so. When Dear Revered Leader Kim il-Fenty appointed Commissioners from the hotel, restaurant and tourism businesses to the Taxicab Commission, they went to work taking away money from us. This was no surprise, as the trade groups that represent those businesses have been on record as hostile to the cab business for at least forty years. One of the things that they took away was the dismissal.

It was difficult to collect it, but you could try, at least. The only way to enforce it, practically, at least, would be through an application. On Uber Taxi, if the user cancels or is not there, we do get a five dollar dismissal. Uber does not take any of it, either; we get the whole five dollars,
 

roadman

Well-Known Member
Thanks for sharing this valuable information.

I picked up some pax with brand New dctc hack licenses in 2015 I wonder how they got them without attending cab school.
 
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