Greeley is a taxi service desert for senior citizens


About 1:15 a.m. on a cold September night, Mike Pascarella was released from a hospital in Greeley and needed a ride home.

He called a cab company that didn’t have drivers based in Greeley. He expected a wait, but it was his only option since the closure of Greeley-based Mystery Rides and Smart Rides earlier this year.

No one was available, so he continued to call every 20 or 30 minutes hoping a driver would become available. It wasn’t until 7 a.m. that Pascarella got a lift.

“I’m a senior citizen with disabilities. I’m a vet, and I don’t need to be treated like this,” he said. “They don’t have anybody in Greeley to help people out who need it.”

Pascarella said it wasn’t the first time he was left waiting for hours in the cold. Two previous times, he was fortunate enough to find people willing to take him home. Greeley bar owners have reported similar issues with taxi services based outside of Greeley. Sometimes drivers took an hour and a half before they could pick up a drunk patron, and sometimes they never showed up at all.

Among business travelers, Uber has come to take up 74 percent of the ride-hailing market, according to a second quarter of 2018 report by Certify, an online travel and expense management company. Lyft meets about 19 percent of the market, while traditional taxi services — which have continued to decrease over recent years — take up only 7 percent of the market.

Read the full story on greeleytribune.com.

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