WAMU 88.5 : News

Filed Under:

After Years Of Delays, D.C. Taxicabs Now Accept Credit Cards

No cash, no problem—D.C. taxicabs have to take credit cards starting today.
No cash, no problem—D.C. taxicabs have to take credit cards starting today.

Starting today every taxicab on the streets in D.C. must accept credit card and smartphone payments.

D.C cabbies have had since June to install credit card readers, one piece of the D.C. Taxicab Commission's drive to modernize the taxi fleet. Despite a lot of reluctance and confusion that led to two extensions, most met today's deadline.

"It is here now, so we just dealin' with it. That's the only way I look at it now," said one driver outside Union Station. "They say that's the law, that's law. That's it, man."

The Taxicab Commission has warned drivers it will impound their vehicles if they pick up passengers without the new devices. However, regulators will consider on a case-by-case basis whether a cabbie was denied a "reasonable opportunity"—as they put it—to install the mandatory credit card readers. Commission Chairman Ron Linton says about 80 percent of taxis will be in compliance.

"It will exceed 5,200," he says.

There are roughly 6,500 taxis licensed in Washington. That should be a sufficient number of vehicles to serve the market.

The commission estimates fewer than 200 drivers were affected by an installation company pulling out of a contract, and they will be eligible for more time to get their credit card readers installed. Linton says five other companies have additional capacity to help cabbies come on board.


'Not Without My Daughter' Subject Grows Up, Tells Her Own Story

"Not Without My Daughter" told the story of an American mother and daughter fleeing Iran. Now that young girl is telling her own story in her memoir, "My Name is Mahtob."

Internet Food Culture Gives Rise To New 'Eatymology'

Internet food culture has brought us new words for nearly every gastronomical condition. The author of "Eatymology," parodist Josh Friedland, discusses "brogurt" with NPR's Rachel Martin.

Proposed Climate Change Rules At Odds With U.S. Opponents

President Obama says the U.S. must lead the charge to reduce burning of fossil fuels. But American lawmakers are divided on limiting carbon emissions and opponents say they'll challenge any new rules.

Payoffs For Prediction: Could Markets Help Identify Terrorism Risk?

In a terror prediction market, people would bet real money on the likelihood of attacks. NPR's Scott Simon speaks with Stephen Carter about whether such a market could predict — and deter — attacks.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.