I wanted to get this out there now for DC area travelers.  I’m a semi-frequent Red Top Cab customer.  Red Top is a Virginia company but they can pick up in DC and transport to Virginia.  Reagan National Airport (DCA) happens to be in Virginia, so Red Top is usually the first number I call for transportation from my home in northwest DC to DCA.  They are supremely reliable, always on time, and unfailingly polite.  Except for the morning that I needed them to show up.  That would’ve been at 6AM on Sunday morning, January 31, 2010.

I had booked a cab online about a week in advance for a pick up at our home and transportation to DCA for our 8:20AM flight to Miami.  As luck would have it, we had a few inches of snow the day before our flight.  I don’t remember how much snow we had exactly, but it wasn’t anything like the nearly 3 feet we’ve had since.

Well, I rose a few minutes before 5AM to get ready for our trip.  I checked the Taxi Magic app on my iPhone around 5:40AM to see if a cab had been dispatched, and it had not.  At 5:50AM, I decided to call Red Top and see what was up.  When I finally got through to a taxi dispatcher, they asked for details of my booking.  In a minute or so, it became obvious that they had located my booking and realized that no cab had been dispatched.  The dispatcher said something to the effect of “let me transfer you and see what happened.”  I knew I was screwed.  The next person came online soon enough, and basically said that they had no cab and didn’t know when they would.

Mrs MJ on Travel and I made a command decision to brush off the car and boogie to DCA.  Luckily, it was quite cold, and the snow was very powdery.  We had the car cleaned off in minutes, loaded the bags and were on our way.  The streets were absolutely fine.  Some snow in spots, but nothing that should cause a shortage of cabs.  Exactly one hour after we made the decision to drive to DCA, we were in the Admirals Club having our first coffee, and thanking our lucky stars that things went so well.

Red Top Cab, you let me down.  Worse yet, you let me down on the morning that kicked off my 40th birthday extravaganza.  I won’t soon forget this.  I’m sorry it snowed and all, but the minimal amount of snow we experienced that evening was no excuse to strand a customer when they needed you.  The least you could’ve done was let me know.  It’s going to be a while before I call again.