If you need a cab in Chicago on Thursday, you might have a hard time finding a cab, reports Fox 32. Apparently, Thursday is “A Day Without a Cab Driver” day in Chicago, as taxi drivers start protesting what they feel are unfair services such as Uber and Lyft. The “A Day Without a Cab Driver” should prove pretty interesting for those Chicagoans and visitors to Chicago who are used to hailing down cabs on Michigan Avenue as they shop the Magnificent Mile. Or those who are accustomed to leaving Chicago-area airports such as O’Hare International Airport and Midway Airport and taking a cab to their destinations.
On Thursday, the Chicago taxi drivers’ union plans to go on strike in order to teach Mayor Rahm Emanuel a lesson about allowing Uber and Lyft to pick up passengers at said Chicago airports, all the while raising fares for cabs. Indeed, Chicago is a city that’s always chock-full of cabs speeding around the city streets, from Oak Street Beach to the South Side of the city and beyond. To imagine Chicago without cabs is quite an unimaginable scene indeed.
It’s not the first time that Chicago cab drivers have complained about Uber and Lyft.
Cab drivers previously launched a protest in Chicago in February. That protest took place outside of Chicago’s City Hall, complaining about the lack of regulations levied against Uber and other ride-sharing services. Indeed, the news has been peppered with stories lately with concerns about the driver acceptance process in certain ride-sharing services.
With Chicago cab drivers set to stay off the streets of Chicago on Thursday — at least in terms of not providing cab rides — one wonders if other, non-union cab drivers will take to Chicago streets in order to fill the gaps and provide cab rides to confused patrons. Chicago is also famous for having “livery services” of sometimes sketchy-looking cars that offer rides in lieu of cabs.
Already on Twitter, prior to the actual day that the Chicago cabs are planning to strike, folks are tweeting about using ride-sharing service like Uber and Lyft in their absence. According to Crain’s Chicago Business, Chicago cabbies are hoping that a day without cabs in Chicago will cause chaos at the airports and beyond, and send a real message to the city about their concerns. It should: After all, Chicago isn’t a small town wherein cabs can’t be hailed, like towns such as Tallahassee, Florida, used to be. In those cases, cabs had to be called or summoned via phone.
No — Chicago is more like New York, whereby cabs can generally be found on nearly every corner downtown. Apparently, not on Thursday.