Monday March 14th, 2011 I had the unfortunate experience of using New York Airport Service taxi service from Laguardia Airport to Grand Central Terminal in NYC. The NYAS exhibited poor customer service, bad marketing and ticket policies that can be considered questionable at best.
The first real problem I had with the NYSA is that their ticket policy. I thought it was pretty neat that they give you the option of buying your ticket online for a modest $12, which is about half of what a cab ride of the same distance would run you, however in order to board the taxi service one must present a printed ticket voucher.
Being a smartphone user it is very convenient to be able to buy my ticket online, have it emailed to me with a confirmation number and barcode, present said confirmation number and barcode on my phone and get on the taxi. So here I am $12 dollars in the hole, I have a ticket, but no way of printing it. Luckily for me the supervisor for US Airways, let me print it on his computer, but thats for another review. Why would they give you the option of purchasing it on your smartphone if you needed to have a printed ticket to board? Doesn’t make any sense to me.
My gripes with this company do not stop there. After I finally get my ticket all squared away I see an employee loading luggage onto the van. There are clearly at least 3 more seats in this van so I approach the driver, “I have a ticket to Grand Central Terminal.” He calmly replys, “Sure one second.” The man then finishes loading the people luggage, gets in the van and drives off leaving me standing there scratching my head. I was livid. Every child within earshot just learned about 20 new words.
After about 20 minutes of waiting another van comes with an older, clearly italian man, operating it. This guy was more helpful as he loaded my luggage and told me to have a seat. I then waited 20 more minutes for this guy to come back with some other customers and being loading them up. One pregnant woman was clearly offended when the man asked her if she would be willing to sit on the floor in the middle of the seats because there was, “not a lot of room.” Luckily for her a younger boy took that spot and off we went.
Watching this man drive like a bat out of hell through NYC was one of the most nerve wracking moments of my entire life. I felt like we were going to crash every time we went around a corner or cut some poor person off. After about 30 minutes of gripping the seat so hard that I left imprints we arrived at Grand Central Terminal. After the man unloaded my luggage he was clearly looking for a tip, well he didn’t get one from me. Instead I told him, “Next time I’ll just walk.”
Overall the service and attitude of this company so busch league its almost pathetic. Rude drivers who take off while your waiting, terrible ticket policies, and crazy drivers make for an upsetting experience. If I could go back and do it all over again I would have walked through the Ghetto and taken the subway instead.