Cabs at No Cost for Holiday Party-Goers

By: Erin Tate
By: Erin Tate

The Valley is getting ready to ring in the New Year. While it's a time for fun, alcohol-related fatalities are at their highest over the holidays.

Local cabs, cops, businesses and bars are partnering to make sure holiday party-goers get home safely.

"Safe ride home is the key word," said John Keith, owner of Yellow Cab Company in Harrisonburg.

Those words will get you a taxi ride home this holiday and it won't cost you a penny.

"Chandler, Franklin and O'Bryan have historically provided safe rides home. They're doing it again this year. If you're leaving a party or bar and going home, they will pick up the tab," explained Keith.

In and around the Valley, the law firm pays cab companies to give anyone who's had too much to drink a ride home within 10 miles of the participating city.

Signs like the ones posted by area police departments are a helpful reminder of the thousands of dollars the firm is spending to save hundreds of lives.

That money helps taxi services like Yellow Cab stay afloat during their seasonal slump.

"When the students are out of town business drops off quite a bit and the holiday parties do help make up for some of that," said Keith.

Keith said he thinks business is down because more people are aware of the dangers of driving drunk.

Donna Finnigan, owner of Finnigan's Cove, said the free safe ride home program is helpful but she noticed last year, when it wasn't offered, people were just as inclined to take a taxi and pay for it themselves.

Bars are responsible for keeping customers in check and calling them a cab when needed.

"Since we're ultimately responsible for people getting home safely, I'm more than happy to pick up the phone and call a cab no matter how busy I am. It's a small inconvenience for me,” Calhoun's Bartender Robin Spicer said.

This holiday, designated drivers can also get free non-alcoholic beverages at local bars.


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