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.

WAMU 88.5

Kate Mulgrew: "Born With Teeth" (Rebroadcast)

Kate Mulgrew, who stars as "Red" in the Netflix TV series "Orange Is The New Black", opens up in a new memoir about her complicated family and the baby she gave away for adoption as a young woman.


Swapping The Street For The Orchard, City Dwellers Take Their Pick Of Fruit

Urban foragers don't just pick their meals from the trash; many eat only the finest, freshest produce — picked from city trees. The League of Urban Canners harvests fruit from trees to make jam.

Reconsidering The Pilgrims, Piety And America's Founding Principles

Conservatives who want to emphasize America's Christian roots embrace the story of the Pilgrims and the Mayflower Compact. But some historians say their role in the country's founding is overstated.

From Takeout To Breakups: Apps Can Deliver Anything, For A Price

Convenience is at an all-time premium — and a lot of smartphone apps promise to make many of the things we do every day easier. In a time-crunch or sheer laziness, how far will the apps take us?

Leave a Comment

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