ESCANABA, Mich, (MICH) With the announcement that the ride hailing service Lyft was looking to recruit drivers in the U.P. I wanted to find out what went into be a real cab driver in upper Michigan so I went and found someone who knows.
Tom Grant has been the co-owner of Escanaba's J & N Taxi for 17 years now. When people learn what Tom does for a living several of them have the same reaction.
"A lot of people say 'Oh, must be a lotta fun driving a taxi'........"
Tom pauses and says "Sometimes."
There are some requirements that are the same throughout the state and then there are those regulations that change from city to city.
"You have to have a chaffeur's license, which isn't difficult. Most people can pass the test. That's a $35 or $40 test."
In Escanaba the requirements on Taxi companies are fairly strong.
"The city's charter requires us to get inspected every three months. The state requires an inspection one a years. That inspections cost $250."
And it's not just the vehicles that get inspected. All drivers must pass a yearly background check.