Where supply doesn't meet demand in Boston

Logan cab line

Sara photographed the cab line at Logan around 12:45 this morning.



Free tagging: 


oh man

By on

. . . I have sooo been there.

Me too

By on

And I let the family of five behind me take the minivan that pulled up for me, because it was way worse of a supersuck for them.

This is why I arrange a ride if I'm coming in that late.

You guys understand that this is on Massport right?

Maybe you don't understand it but, the cabs don't get to decide which terminal to go to. Massport does. We buy a ticket that allows us to sit in their parking lot until we are dispatched to a terminal. They decide which terminal. They are forever fucking this process up sending too many cabs to one terminal not enough to another and then sending more cabs from the parking lot instead of from the terminal that got too many.

Also "late flights" process was made a bit worse over the last 6 months. There was once a phone line we could call 617-561-1690 that would tell us how many flights there were after midnight and what the conditions of those flights were. Meaning if the flights were coming in full they would tell us to stay late. Last I heard they replaced this system with a twitter account they were supposed to do the same thing with. Yet I follow the account and it does not seem that they are updating it as they said they would.

I am so all set with Boston and their crazy rules that do nothing but worsen the relationship between rider and driver and allow the cab companies to further milk the drivers like cows I went and opened my own company out of Revere.

If you are coming into Logan late night and want me to come pick you up I can do it..here is how.

1) As they plane pulls to the gate and they make an announcement you may turn on your electronic devices call me then 781-777-7777. I need to know what airline you are at your last name and what color shirt you have on.

2) Get your bag and go upstairs to the departure level.

By the time you get up there I will be there waiting for you. I have minivans. I speak English reasonably well and can take directions in Spanish. I have GPS and last but not least I can process your credit cards with my Android phone and won't bitch and moan about it.


Lucky 7

Thank you for posting this

By on

People need to understand just how badly Massport is screwing this up. I've heard a number of cabbies say that they swear Massport is in the pocket of the limo companies and is deliberately making the taxi riders' lives more difficult as a result.

i've been told the city

By on

i've been told the city doesn't allow the taxi's to combine parties anymore, to maximize tolls and tax revenue. allowing that, would help quite a bit.

Least of city's cab problems

By on

It's basically been war on cabs since I moved here and, likely, for years before. The lines of demarcation between city cab companies keep fares artificially high, the outright refusal to do a flat-rate fare to the airport or to charge cabs the same toll as cars coming out thins the airport herd and imposed credit card, GPS and hybrid mandates just compound the problem.

Combining parties? That's low-hanging fruit on a poisoned tree.

Thank you!

It is nice to see that some people understand. Please try to continue to educate people. We do appreciate it.

You've also apparently been told

By on

that plurals are formed with apostrophes and that commas are splattered anywhere you damn well please. How much credibility can you really have?

funny :)

By on

ok, i guess i do better with languages with < 100 words. and no, english is not my second language. :)

double loading

This really isn't true. It is not that they do not allow us to do it but rather that they are always the one who get to decide when double loading is required.

Also at Logan it is not the city but Massport ground transportation unit who decides.

Is the problem not a shortage

By on

Is the problem not a shortage of cabs, but just the very slow loading procedure?

At least we know

By on

that the necessary overnight maintenance of the T which keeps them from running for 24 hours is working and keeping trains running smoothly during the da....

...sorry, couldn't get through it with a straight face.

Maybe it's because

By on

cabs such assholes about going to East Boston. I never get their frustration-yes they get jacked on the toll, but cabs have to go the the Airport either way and could easily swing by after dropping someone off. This picture may be the extreme, but shows that it's a relatively easy fare, and probably a decent tip as well.


By on

If the cab is making a logan run anywhere but from Boston, they have to go back to Cambridge/Somerville/Brookline/Quincy. They are not allowed to pick up reverse fairs in Boston proper.

Chock it up to just another issue with Hackney / the medallion system.

True, but there is a work around

By on

You are allowed to call any cab company from anywhere to come pick you up anywhere in Boston. Cabs from outside of Boston are not allowed in the cab queue or to pick anyone up who flags them down within the city. After a cab from outside of Boston drops off a passenger, they are not allowed to pick up arriving passengers.

Any time you are in a long line, you can call for a Brookline taxi to pick you up (and they will be there right away. This is within the law and done all the time.

Cabs & East Boston

You are correct that the picture summarizes the situation but you are getting the wrong summary.

Taxis at Logan airport are managed by the Massport ground transportation unit. There is a parking lot over near the Hyatt that holds 400 taxis and the cabs are dispatched by GTU to the terminals from that location. They are so inept at doing this properly that there are regulations in place to give the drivers free Logan trips when they screw up bad enough. Sometimes a flight comes in and they send 40 cabs to say Terminal B. Those cabs are sitting waiting for people who are not coming out. Right after they get dispatched another 10 get sent to terminal C. They all get rides right away and then they dispatch more to terminal C from the parking lot. Meanwhile those 40 cabs still sit at B. If they send out 150 cabs to other terminals after the first guy in line at B he gets a free trip.

The people who run Logan do it so poorly that no one in their right mind wants to work work there.

i would have slept in the

By on

i would have slept in the terminal until the T started up. It's just a few more hours. Does the airport still allow passengers to do this?

I've done that

By on

I've done that.. been on far too many delayed flights that arrive after 1am. Cabs are scarce at those hours, so I just go down to the baggage area and sit there near the one thing thats open after 1am at the airport (Dunkin Donuts)

Its silly.. I live less than a 1 mile from the airport and I have to do this (because the airport is not walkable from E. Boston).

And folks, do you think cabbies are nasty? Try telling them that you live in Chelsea or East Boston, where they are not allowed to collect a toll because you aren't going thru the toll to go home. They get super nasty.. like you just robbed an infant of their candy. They are mad they can't royally screw you because you aren't going across the harbor so they can tack on all these fees.

This is why I just wait until 5:15 until the first train. I got tired of fighting with cabbies who wanted to over charge me just to take me 2 miles.


Thankfully, I've never had to do this (getting into Logan past midnight). When are the first Silver Line buses and/or Blue Line shuttles at the terminals?

Walking from Logan Airport

You can walk from any terminal to Terminal E, and from there it's a short walk to the Airport MBTA station. From there, aren't there a couple of ways to walk out into residential East Boston? There's a big football field that you get to this way, too.

I live..

By on

I live in Chelsea, in Bellingham Square.

I've walked from Shaw's in Central Square (Eastie), to my house late at night, its a hike, and its pretty scary.

I'm not sure I would walk from the Airport at that hour.. plus it'd take me an hour (as it took an hour to get from Bellingham Square to Central Sq, Eastie).

Are Chelsea residents still

By on

Are Chelsea residents still allowed to take the Massport shuttle bus to the employee parking garage?

I wish

By on

I WISH.. This would make getting to the airport easy from my house. That garage is a 3-4 minute walk from my house...

If you know of a way to get on that shuttle, please let me know cuz I'd be grateful forever to you.

Have you tried flagging down

By on

Have you tried flagging down the bus and telling the driver you live in Chelsea? I have no idea if this is still officially allowed, so you'd need to try it to find out.

taxi tolls @cybah

You do understand that we do not get even 1 % of those tolls right? Why would I want them so badly? If people are angry about taking you to Chelsea it has nothing to do with the toll. They are probably unhappy they just waited over an hour to get a job and now they got Chelsea which is what? $12?

I am not saying they are right I am saying that is why. Also there i still a toll going from Logan to Chelsea. They have to collect the Massport fee they paid to pick up there. $2.50 I think it is now. Again the driver gets nothing from this.

The Silverline doesn't need

By on

The Silverline doesn't need "track maintenance" they should run that later as an express airport to South Station. At least then people can get into the city, grab a cab at South Station or arrange for someone to pick them up there.


But it would get riders at least into downtown. And shave about $15 off their fare if they get a cab by South Station. But I've already ranted enough about cabs in this city here, so I'll leave it at that.

Let's be fair here...

By on

As any cabbie can tell you, Sunday is pretty much a day off for most cab drivers, so the amount of cabs available to most passengers on Sunday is decreased substantially. Only the die hards work late Sunday nights and most of them are at the airport, as downtown and the radio are light on Sunday nights.

As a previous poster mentioned, anyone can have a cab from their town pick them up if they do not want to take a chance on no cabs there when they deplane.

Boston is not a

By on

world class city - never was and never will be.

Aside from Logan, its virtually impossible to grab a taxi on a sunny day here, let alone a cold, rainy day. Best bet is usually to walk to a hotel where they are usually lined up.

And don't even get me started on the lack of street knowledge from which most of the drivers suffer. I can't tell you how many times a taxi has mistakenly taken the mass turnpike ramo instead of the albany street ramp, resulting in a drive out to the allston-brighton tolls and a u-turn.

Then there is the idiocy of the taxi light system so you can never tell if a taxi is free or occupied. sometimes the light is on, sometimes it is off, sometimes its obscured by the roof advertising. People shouldn't have to try to flag down every taxi they see because some driver didn't know the light was supposed to be on.

But but medallions!

By on

We sacrificed a free market system because medallions make taxis so much more professional and safer, riiiiiight?

As an aside, in NYC, the cabs aren't supposed to refuse any ride in the city, but they exploit a loophole where they run around as "off-duty" so they can stop and see where you're going. If they don't like it, they will refuse to take you.

My NYC friends

By on

...complain about the same problems with taxi supply that I hear here.

Lived there for 26 years

By on

and have gone back regularly in the four years I've been here. The taxi supply here is NOTHING like it is there. Finding a cab isn't a labor there and in Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens and the Bronx (can't speak to Staten Island), it's just as easy as stepping to the curb of any major thoroughfare.

Is it perfect? No, but I'll take the hemming and hawing about rides out to Jersey or Long Island and the occasional broken A/C any day if it means having a cab when the bars let out (good luck at Faneuil), stepping right into a cab once I leave the airport (the ONLY area where LaGuardia beats Logan) and a flat rate to those airports when it's time to go.

My suggestion: Get better friends.

What time, place?

By on

Have you ever tried flagging one in a nightlife hotspot on a day when lots of people are out? It's quite a bit tougher, sometimes nearly impossible, both here and there.


By on

I've flagged cabs after Rangers games at the Garden, among the Christmas throngs at Rock Center, in Union Square midsummer, in Turtle Bay at 11:30 on a Friday, on Sixth Avenue and West 4th just about every weekend of my teenage life, at LaGuardia at Christmas, at JFK on Thanksgiving, with President Bush in town, during the UN General Assembly, after a Garth Brooks concert in Central Park and, my favorite, on FDR Drive on the Fourth Of July just after they opened it to traffic again.

Oh, and after Yankees games at the stadium, the US Open in Flushing, during Greek Easter in Astoria, after concerts at McCarran in Brooklyn...

Would you like a spreadsheet and scans of my receipts?

That's wonderful

By on

I notice you conveniently left out the worst night of the year to catch a cab, and many of those anecdotes are not taxi demand-heavy. Especially in a town with a real subway.

Spoken like a guy...

By on

who doesn't get out of Boston too often. Keep reading your I Love NY guidebook.

Simple fact is that every night of the year -- including that night -- a cab is way easier and way cheaper to get in NYC than in Boston. Maybe when your friends stop humoring you and finally tell you that you're a faux-Libertarian douchenozzle who they don't want living within 300 miles of their New York abodes and haunts, you'll finally get it.

Born in Queens

By on

Lived at 36th St. and Ditmars until I was 18. I grew up in the city and don't just have it stamped on my birth certificate. Judging by your "my friends say" approach to cabs in town, it doesn't appear you can say the same.

Keep arguing from the point of ignorance. It's doing wonders for you.

What I find funny about this

By on

What I find funny about this whole thread is how defensive people get about cabs.

In the anecdote which sparked this, I told my friend that it was medallions limiting supply. And he also got very defensive about cabs all of a sudden. Although, he didn't start attacking me personally about it.

People are very attached to the current system, not sure why.


By on

I know Hanlon's Razor applies, but there are tales aplenty of cabbies exploiting those who are busy/unfamiliar/tired. After all, it's in their financial interest to get it wrong.