D.C. taxi fares increase to $2.16 per mile

Local,Transportation,Liz Essley

Taxi fares in the District are going up Saturday.

The per-mile rate will move from $1.50 to $2.16, and the waiting fee, which kicks in any time a cab is moving less than 10 mph, will go up from $15 an hour to $25 an hour.

But taxi drivers won't be able to charge some of their previous extra fees under the new rules. The 50 cent bag fee is eliminated, as well as the $1 extra passenger fee, unless the cab is a van. The $1 gas fee is still in place.

But it may be a while before D.C. travelers feel the pinch in their pocketbooks. Cab drivers must have their meters recalibrated before they can begin charging the higher fares. D.C. Taxicab Commission Chairman Ron Linton doesn't expect all the cab meters to be updated until mid-May.

Cab drivers petitioned for months for the fare increase, but many were unhappy with the final structure, wanting the cab commission to keep the extra fees in place.

Consumer groups wanted to delay the fare increase until after the taxi industry underwent the sweeping reform that is making its way through the D.C. Council. The legislation would require all cabs to be painted the same color, accept payment by credit card and use GPS navigational systems, among other updates.

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