London’s cab drivers like to chat, this is probably due to being cooped up all day behind the wheel, and are only too happy to pass on their reserved wisdom on England’s manager, immigration or some obscure fact about Jack the Ripper. All this flies in the face of what the punter prefers, German and Koreans are most easily annoyed by small talk and are unimpressed by London cabbies’ knowledge of the capital and wish to travel in silence.
[R]ealising this flaw in the drivers Transport for London are currently looking to give additional training on etiquette; welcoming passengers, dealing with stressful situations and knowing when the passenger doesn’t need to discuss last night’s game.
Most Londoners are a pretty diffident lot preferring to apologise than complaint particularly to a driver who might take to you to Queensway instead of Queens Gate.
According to an ICM Survey 70 per cent of Londoners apologise if someone bumps into them and 74 per cent believe Britain is still a reserved nation, remarkably only 9 per cent of passengers in a taxi would feel confident asking the driver to keep stum.
Private hire operator Green Tomato Cars – crazy name, but at least they don’t call themselves minicabs – commissioned a survey which revealed that one third of Londoners have taken a journey where they didn’t want the driver to talk, 40 per cent said they felt obliged to join in the conversation; and only 10 per cent would summon up the courage to ask for silence.
Green Tomato Cars have now introduced, on a trial basis, a talk/mute button to state their preference when travelling in their vehicles. Presumably if you feel the need to chat and require a verbose driver, Green Tomato Cars will direct you to a black cab so you may enjoy their level of loquaciousness.