Do they go to Frenchtown from CA?
Yes but there's no real schedule.
You have to flag them down as you see one.
By the time you wait for one to come by, you can walk from town to Frenchtown.
I've been very lucky with them I guess as I've never waited more than 2 minutes and I've taken them several times a day since I got here. But after posting this I realized Frenchtown is just by Windward Passage which is a short walk, so I'm jazzed.
Thanks for your help.
You're welcome and welcome to STT.
Throwing in some notes for those that might be unfamiliar with taxi situation... safaris... dollar rides...
In the VI, there are licensed taxis; and they are regulated by the VI Taxicab Commission. Taxis are usually vans, safaris, SUVs, or cars. There are fixed prices, per person, by destination.
Safaris are trucks with the truck bed decked out with bench seats and a cover, no windows, doors or seat belts. Small ones can hold like 10-12 people, large ones 24-26 people.
There are "gypsy taxis" and they are not licensed or regulated... essentially a driver using their personal vehicle to 'run taxi'. Usually they wait outside grocery stores, and sometimes late night outside bars. (Good idea to stick to licensed taxis... you can tell by the license plate and various placards on the vehicle stating capacity etc.)
"Dollar rides", which are operated by licensed taxis, run sort of like public transportation in the sense that they follow a very similar route, and stop at public bus stops or very close by, and they are kind-of regulated only as far as to have a fixed price they charge. I think its still $1 within town, and $2 outside of town. This is for St. Thomas. I think they exist on St. Croix too? Don't think they exist on St. John? Dollar ride operators vehicle of choice is the safari.
And there is VITRAN, which is the public transportation system - public buses.
So in this thread... the OP asked about Safari Taxis... but pretty sure the discussion refers to 'dollar rides'.
Islander: You did a good job of explaining what I think is a very difficult topic. I think people see the open "safari" vehicles and think they are dollar ride. There is no way to distinguish them from regular taxis- they both have taxi plates- so there is lots of confusion.
Then there is the whole discussion of Uber...:D
Thank you East Ender, yes left out how to tell the difference between a safari operating as a "taxi" vs. one operating as a "dollar ride". Let's see...
So the safari vehicle and driver running the "dollar ride" routes as mentioned are actually taxis and taxi drivers. Telling which is which is, requires a bit of observation and deduction.
If the safari is by a cruise ship dock or popular tourist attraction, it's likely a taxi.
If the safari is really spic and span, nice paint job whether solid color and for sure if its a mural on wheels with flowers, fish, kids, cartoons etc. it is likely a taxi.
If it is filled with people with selfie sticks and cameras and phones pointing toward the view; you got it, taxi.
If its an older safari, a bit worn-out looking; possibly a 'dollar ride'.
If its pulling into bus stops or near them, very likely a 'dollar ride'.
If its filled with people with grocery bags on their lap, or by their feet; school kids in uniforms; people not taking photos or the scenery or video-taping the bumpy ride... then its a 'dollar ride'.
And of course the best way to double check is ask the passengers and/or driver... "dollar ride?"
The dollar rides don't have signs like public transportation, so no placard on the front saying which route they are on. So you have to ask the passengers and/or driver... "going town"? "heading country?" "heading east"?. You'll figure out the directional jargon quick enough, and then have the routes figured out after using it several times.
How's that East Ender? *-)
PS: I don't think Uber works here?
With the way the VI taxi industry is set up, Uber would be perfect.
I'm sure they will be here sooner rather than later since they've already become a major factor in the Puerto Rico taxi industry in just a few short months.
I doubt the taxi industry would allow it.
yea, no way they'd allow it!
If you're looking for a taxi in CA - there is always ones outside of Hibuscus alley - in front of Banco popular. Seems that you can catch a dollar ride there too. You could walk. Idk about STT lately but STX had been miserably hot so I wold t walk lol. Heat usually doesn't bother me, but I'm melting.
Uber requires cars be less than 5 years old.. the GPS street mapping system is a mess. The taxi association too powerful. Most damming Uber has said they have no plans of expanding here.
Time will tell.
.. the GPS street mapping system is a mess.
I get by pretty well with my Garmin, it finds most addresses correctly. Biggest issue is the streets it has mapped that aren't streets but it doesn't take long to figure that out.
If I may say, Islander, I am delighted to see you back...
The Uber thing is a big deal now with a lot of newcomers who think that things should be like they are back home. I was stirring the pot.;)
Are they pet friendly? We have a medium size dog and wondering if we will be able to use their services.
few -- if any -- safari truck drivers will allow a dog.
few -- if any -- safari truck drivers will allow a dog.
Just say you're partially blind and its a service dog.
Some taxi driver refused a service dog.
Refusing a service dog is against the law. In a normal society the driver would pay hefty fines and maybe lose his license, but since our taxi commission is a mafia nothing will happen.
a lot of this mindset may also have a lot to do with these "fake" service dogs. Time for the ADA to force a crack down on these doctors writing fake notes for these people to save a few bucks on plane or to take their dogs everywhere. Hell I'd love to take my dog everywhere but I'm not going to stoop down to others level.
If a safari or taxi drivers sees someone at a bus stop with a service animal, they can just pass them by. Only the VITRAN bus is obligated to pick up passengers at the bus stop.
Many locals are afraid of dogs and there really isn't room for them.
There is at least one service for people who need assisted transportation, but I'm not sure of the exact name because on STT there is more than one. VITRAN Plus might be one but you have to reserve in advance, and I think you have to sign up at Human Services to qualify.
There are some gypsy taxis on STT that are happy to assist you but maybe not with an animal.
Yes, MS411, this is totally true. Restaurants are allowed to refuse service to anyone in a wheelchair if they are scared of wheelchairs or if their tables aren't big enough for them. You can also kick someone out of your retail store if they're on crutches and asking your sales associates for too much of their time.
The USVI and PR are the only islands in the Caribbean that require accommodations for those who need assistance. We get many visitors who have special needs and one senate candidate who was not elected has been trying to get Tourism to promote our islands as special needs friendly.
STT has 2 beaches that have wheelchair access. Secret Harbor had a beach wheelchair before the storm and the dive shop there has some certification that demonstrates their capability of providing diving excursions to people with different physical abilities.
Trunk Bay on St John had a wheelchair ramp before the storms. Not sure of its status now.
I don't remember seeing any service animals here. The people I see who need assistance rely on humans to give them assistance either through Human Services or family member.
Also, Magens had wheelchair access to the beach and a sand chair at one point. You need to check about Secret Harbour. The old owner had the special certification, not sure about the new people.
kudzu is being kinda snarky, but it is true that many people here do not feel like they need to follow the law. It's also true that many people have conflated "service animal" (like guide dog for the blind) with "I want my dog with me and I bought him a vest". I, for one, am suspicious when I see those vests.