KQED Food Blog: Bay Area Bites: Luxor Cab Ruined My Dinner
Bay Area Bites: culinary rants & raves from bay area foodies and professionals
Previous Posts
Resist the Box: Homemade Macaroni and Cheese
Eating Space: Food in the Open
Welsh Rabbit, Welsh Rarebit
Techniques of Healthy Cooking
Grace Cathedral, The Forum Podcasts
Grounded Groceries
Bento Porn
Russia House
Burns Night and Ode to a Haggis
Cook by the Book: Throw a Great Party
BAB Guidelines

'Bay Area Bites' is part of KQED's Blog Authors Collaborative. Blog contributors and commentators are solely responsible for their content. If you're interested in writing or contributing to a blog on kqed.org, email us with your idea.
Monday, February 04, 2008
Luxor Cab Ruined My Dinner

You know the old saying: "It is better to travel hopefully than to arrive"? Well, that's literally true when you're dining out in San Francisco and relying on taxi service. Forget about the cab being on time, most of the time you just hope it shows up at all.

My husband and I MUNI'd for a few years, but door-to-door, the travel time was sometimes over an hour when the restaurant was only ten minutes away by car. We have our own car, but parking is a nightmare in some neighborhoods and we enjoy wine with dinner. There are enough drunk drivers careering around the streets of San Francisco, we don't need to add to them.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but when you call a cab company and they tell you they're sending a cab your way, you've entered into an agreement. They've agreed to send you something, and you've agreed to wait. And wait. And wait. AND WAIT!

It's gotten so bad that after we call a cab, we now look at the clock and estimate how long we'll wait before we try to hail one off the street or call another company.

For us, the worst cab offenders have been Luxor and Yellow Cab. They're both equally horrible, and by the time we finally weaned ourselves off of both companies, we had lost count how many times we had called for cabs that never showed up. We lost count of how many times we paced around the sidewalk outside our building, straining through the dark to find the muted light on top of a car roof. We lost count of how many times we called the cab company back to ask where the HELL our promised cab was only to be met with a busy signal over and over and over and OVER again!

We've also lost count of how many times we've had to call sympathetic hosts and hostesses and push our reservation by 15, 40, 60 minutes. Another time, we weren't so lucky and we lost our reservation and our dinner. We had Luxor to thank for completely ruining a night out we had been anticipating for weeks.

Of course now, some restaurants have even started instituting a grace period. If you don't show up, say, within 15 minutes of your original reservation time, you risk losing the reservation entirely. I don't blame the restaurants for this policy, because just like ordering a cab, a reservation is an agreement. A contract. A promise to show up when you said you would show up.

Why don't the cab companies understand this?

Labels: , , , , ,



Anonymous Anonymous said...

You should give City Wide a try. Best cab company in SF. They show up FAST and have great drivers. They're the ONLY cab company I will use after years of putting up with Luxor and Yellow. (415) 920.0700

2/04/2008 10:50 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree 100% about Citywide Dispatch. They answer promptly - a real person - you are not put on hold for all eternity - and they are funny, friendly and polite. While you never know which cab company will show up I have never waited longer than 15 minutes for a cab and usually less - and this is in the cab forsaken Sunset district.
The last time I called Yellow I was on hold for 40 minutes before the dispatcher came on. Over the next two hours I had to call back 3 times (and on hold each time) only to have the dispatcher say either the cab came and I wasn't there when in fact I was standing outside the whole time or he'll call you in a few minutes he's just a few blocks away - which never happened. Almost three hours to get a cab - taking Muni would probably only have taken 2 hours.

2/04/2008 11:33 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

What about pre-arranging a cab the day before, or on the morning of the day you plan to go out for dinner? I do that every time I'm planning a trip to the airport. I like Green Cab because they drive Priuses.

2/04/2008 6:49 PM

Anonymous jen maiser said...

Last time I called Yellow Cab and asked them how long it would take the guy said, "your guess is as good as mine" !!! I would not have a job with that attitude.

2/04/2008 9:34 PM

Blogger Sam said...

I have too many bad stories I could share about ALL cab companies. Did you know Luxor do advanced time calls and they *seem* to work better. When the cab doesn't show is the only time me and him argue.

I am going to check out the green one though - I havent tried them yet.

thanks for the comment suggestions!

2/05/2008 11:46 AM

Blogger Michael Procopio said...

The last time I called a Yellow cab, I asked the dispatcher about how long it would be. His reply? "About twelve feet long and yellow."

I wonder how many times he'd used that one before?

2/05/2008 1:16 PM

Anonymous Cam said...

The City needs to stand up to the Taxi Union and implement one phone number to call or add more taxi medallions. Taxis are, after all, considered public transportation, yet the City has yet to do anything about it. What happened to our "progressive politics". Hell, If NY and many other large cities can get it correct, then SF certainly should.

2/05/2008 1:40 PM


Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home

Locate CP Restaurants:
Check, Please! Google Map
KQED Food Sites
Check, Please! Bay Area
Jacques Pépin Celebrates!
Jacques Pépin:
Fast Food My Way
Jacques Pépin:
The Apprentice
Jacques Pépin:
The Complete Pépin
KQED Wine Club
KQED.org Cooking
Weir Cooking in the City
Tasty Food Sites
Chowhound SF
Eat Local Challenge
Edible San Francisco
Food Network
Food Talk
Group Recipes
Hungry Magazine
Leite's Culinaria
Mighty Foods
NPR: Food
Om Organics
Serious Eats
SFGate: Food
SFGate: Wine
SF Station: Restaurants
Slow Food SF
Top Chef
Wikimedia Commons: Food & Drink
Yahoo! Food
Yelp: Reviews
Tangy Food Blogs
101 Cookbooks
A Full Belly
Accidental Hedonist
An Obsession with Food
Anna's Cool Finds
Becks & Posh
Between Meals
Bunny Foot
Butter Pig
Cellar Rat
Chez Pim
Chocolate & Zucchini
Confessions of a
Restaurant Whore
Cooking For Engineers
Cooking with Amy
Cucina Testa Rossa
Culinary Muse
Denise's Kitchen
Eater SF
Feed & Supply
Food Blog S'cool
Food Musings
Food Porn Watch
I'm Mad and I Eat
In Praise of Sardines
Knife's Edge
Life Begins at 30
Love and Cooking
Mental Masala
Moveable Feast
Organic Day
Passionate Eater
San Francisco Gourmet
SF City Eats
Simply Recipes
The Amateur Gourmet
The Ethicurean
The Food Section
The Grub Report
The Petite Pig
The Wine Makers Wife
Vin Divine
Wandering Spoon
Well Fed Network
Word Eater
World on a Plate
Yummy Chow
Search BAB

Eye Candy: Food Photos
BAB on flickr.com
Join Flickr for free and share your photos with the Bay Area Bites and Beyond group pool.
Food Books
The Moosewood Cookbook
by Mollie Katzen
Baking: From My Home to Yours
by Dorie Greenspan
Grand Livre de Cuisine: Alain Ducasse's Desserts and Pastries
by Alain Ducasse, Frederic Robertmison
The Big Book of Outdoor Cooking and Entertaining
by Cheryl Alters Jamison, Bill Jamison
Tasty: Get Great Food on the Table Every Day
by Roy Finamore
Whole Grains Every Day, Every Way
by Lorna Sass
The Soul of a New Cuisine: A Discovery of the Foods and Flavors of Africa
by Marcus Samuelsson
Michael Mina: The Cookbook
by Michael Mina, Photographer: Karl Petzktle
What to Eat
by Marion Nestle
The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals
by Michael Pollan
Essence of Chocolate: Recipes for Baking and Cooking with Fine Chocolate
by John Scharffenberger, Robert Steinberg
Romancing the Vine: Life, Love, and Transformation in the Vineyards of Barolo
by Alan Tardi
What to Drink with What You Eat: The Definitive Guide to Pairing Food with Wine, Beer, Spirits, Coffee, Tea -- Even Water -- Based on Expert Advice from America's Best Sommeliers
by Andrew Dornenburg, Karen Page, Michael Sofronski
The Lee Bros. Southern Cookbook: Stories and Recipes for Southerners and Would-be Southerners
by Matt Lee, Ted Lee
Bread Matters: The State of Modern Bread and a Definitive Guide to Baking Your Own
by Andrew Whitley
Coloring the Seasons: A Cook's Guide
by Allegra McEvedy
All-new Complete Cooking Light Cookbook
by Anne C. Cain
Modern Garde Manger
by Robert B. Garlough
The Spice and Herb Bible
by Ian Hemphill, Kate Hemphill
The Improvisational Cook
by Sally Schneider
Lunch Lessons: Changing the Way We Feed Our Children
by Ann Cooper, Lisa M. Holmes
Cradle of Flavor: Home Cooking from the Spice Islands of Indonesia, Singapore and Malaysia
by James Oseland
My Life in France
by Julia Child, Alex Prud'Homme
A Passion for Ice Cream: 95 Recipes for Fabulous Desserts
by Emily Luchett, Sheri Giblin (photographer)
Au Pied De Cochon -- The Album
by Martin Picard
Memories of Philippine Kitchens
by Amy Besa, Romy Dorotan
Simple Chinese Cooking
by Kylie Kwong
An Invitation to Indian Cooking
by Madhur Jaffrey
Hungry Planet
by Peter Menzel, Faith D'Aluisio
Sunday Suppers at Lucques : Seasonal Recipes from Market to Table
by Suzanne Goin, Teri Gelber
Simple Soirees: Seasonal Menus for Sensational Dinner Parties
by Peggy Knickerbocker, Christopher Hirsheimer (Photographer)
The Cook's Book
by Jill Norman
Molto Italiano : 327 Simple Italian Recipes to Cook at Home
by Mario Batali
Nobu Now
by Nobuyuki Matsuhisa
Cheese : A Connoisseur's Guide to the World's Best
by Max Mccalman, David Gibbons
Bones : Recipes, History, and Lore
by Jennifer McLagan
Whiskey : The Definitive World Guide
by Michael Jackson
The New American Cooking
by Joan Nathan
by Lisa Yockelson
Easy Entertaining: Everything You Need to Know About Having Parties at Home
by Darina Allen
Cooking at De Gustibus: Celebrating 25 Years of Culinary Innovation
by Arlene Feltman Sailhac
Dough: Simple Contemporary Breads
by Richard Bertinet
Chocolate Obsession: Confections and Treats to Create and Savor
by Michael Recchiuti, Fran Gage, Maren Caruso
The Food Substitutions Bible: More Than 5,000 Substitutions for Ingredients, Equipment And Techniques
by David Joachim
Recipes: A Collection for the Modern Cook
by Susan Spungen
Spices of Life: Simple and Delicious Recipes for Great Health
by Nina Simonds
Mangoes & Curry Leaves: Culinary Travels Through the Great Subcontinent
by Jeffrey Alford, Naomi Duguid
Chocolate: A Bittersweet Saga of Dark and Light
by Mort Rosenblum
Vegetable Love: A Book for Cooks
by Barbara Kafka, Christopher Styler
A History of Wine in America: From Prohibition to the Present
by Thomas Pinney
Fonda San Miguel: Thirty Years Of Food And Art
by Tom Gilliland, Miguel Ravago, Virginia B. Wood
Matzoh Ball Gumbo: Culinary Tales of the Jewish South
by Marcie Cohen Ferris
Washoku: Recipes From The Japanese Home Kitchen
by Elizabeth Andoh, Leigh Beisch
Weir Cooking in the City: More than 125 Recipes and Inspiring Ideas for Relaxed Entertaining
by Joanne Weir
Rick Stein's Complete Seafood
by Rick Stein
The Great Scandinavian Baking Book
by Beatrice A. Ojakangas
Serena, Food & Stories: Feeding Friends Every Hour of the Day
by Serena Bass
John Ash: Cooking One on One: Private Lessons in Simple, Contemporary Food from a Master Teacher
by John Ash
The New Mayo Clinic Cookbook: Eating Well for Better Health
by Donald Hensrud, M.D., Jennifer Nelson, R.D. & Mayo Clinic Staff
Foods of the Americas: Native Recipes and Traditions
by Fernando and Marlene Divina
The Provence Cookbook
by Patricia Wells
Olive Trees and Honey: A Treasury of Vegetarian Recipes from Jewish Communities Around the World
by Gil Marks
Last Chance to Eat: The Fate of Taste in a Fast Food World
by Gina Mallet
by Thomas Keller
A Blessing of Bread: The Many Rich Traditions of Jewish Bread Baking Around the World
by Maggie Glezer
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
by Molly Stevens
On Food and Cooking: The Science and Lore of the Kitchen
by Harold McGee
Entertaining: Inspired Menus For Cooking with Family and Friends
by George Dolese
The Breath of a Wok: Unlocking the Spirit of Chinese Wok Cooking Through Recipes and Lore
by Grace Young, Alan Richardson
Cooking New American: How to Cook the Food You Love to Eat
by Fine Cooking Magazine
The Japanese Kitchen: A Book of Essential Ingredients with 200 Authentic Recipes
by Kimiko Barber
Arthur Schwartz's New York City Food: An Opinionated History and More Than 100 Legendary Recipes
by Arthur Schwartz
Poet of the Appetites: The Lives and Loves of M.F.K. Fisher
by Joan Reardon
Bread: A Baker's Book of Techniques and Recipes
by Jeffrey Hamelman
Everyday Dining with Wine
by Andrea Immer
Copyright © 2005-2008 KQED. All rights reserved.