How to Snare a Taxi

| December 9, 2008

Travelling can pleasantly surprise you by revealing the kindness of human nature.

A good little travel tip for you.

I've been heading down to Melbourne from Sydney regularly for a number of years, and whenever I arrive at Tullamarine, I duck upstairs to departures where you can always intercept an empty cab straightaway after they have dropped somebody off. The taxi companies are not, strictly speaking, allowed to pick people up from this area, but I've never been refused.  

As long as you slip in under the radar without attracting the attention of the security staff patrolling the apron, it's a win-win situation: you can avoid the lengthy queues downstairs, and the cabbie is always happy to have a new passenger immediately.

A related travel tale for you.

One day, as I walked towards the glass exit doors, I spotted a driver assisting their passenger as they unloaded their bags from the boot, so I scurried outside before he drove off and asked, "Can you take me to the city".

"No worries, hop in", the driver replied. Shortly after we took off, I noticed that he hadn't put the meter on which seemed a bit strange, and I started feeling quite perturbed when he began smoking. I enquired about the meter.

"This isn't a taxi", he replied.

This gentleman had just given his son a lift to the airport. I was a just a random stranger who had opened his side door and asked for a ride. A taxi had been parked alongside him out the front of departures, and in my rush, it had appeared that the neon sign of the taxi sat above his car.

Completely unfazed by the unorthodoxy of the request, my new friend had obliged.

We both had a good laugh, and then proceeded to have a wonderful conversation for the rest of the journey. He told me a little about his business and family, it was a very enjoyable, and certainly a most memorable trip in to the city.

Peter Fritz AM is Managing Director of Global Access Partners, and Group Managing Director of TCG – a diverse group of companies which over the last 38 years has produced many breakthrough discoveries in computer and communication technologies. He chairs a number of influential government and private enterprise boards and is active in the international arena, including having represented Australia on the OECD Small and Medium Size Enterprise Committee.



  1. michaelhislop

    December 20, 2008 at 3:57 am

     It would seem that you are

     It would seem that you are better at catching a taxi than a gust of wind, Peter.

    Are you still sailing?


    Michael Hislop