A taxi firm in Cardiff has partnered up with the city’s universities to offer free rides home for students in ’emergency’ situations and keep them safe on a night out. If a student has no cash, Dragon Taxis places them at top priority and drives them safely to their destinations as part of the ‘Safe Taxi Scheme’ in place at the University of South Wales, Cardiff University, and Cardiff Metropolitan University.
Although operating on different times and allowances, the booking criteria is the same for all students at each university. When ringing the taxi rank, students must quote that they wish to make a booking through their university’s Safe Taxi Scheme, then provide their full name and ensure they’re in possession of their student ID card.
In addition, pick-up points must be within Cardiff and drop-off points must be a student residential address, student halls, police station or hospital.
“Safety is key”
Whilst the university’s Student Union covers the costs, students have to reimburse the university at a later, convenient time. Ryan Owen, managing director at Dragon Taxis, states that although the service isn’t exactly free for students, it will “ensure they get home safe and they can settle their bill with their Student Union over the next few days.”
Mike Davies, chief executive of Cardiff Metropolitan University Students’ Union, agreed: “If our students come across issues such as lost wallets, cards or purses, this is a valuable emergency option for all.”
The Cardiff scheme is currently in its seventh year of running, and similar schemes have also launched in Bath, Bristol and in Leeds.