CALGARY – A young Calgary woman claims she was refused a late-night cab ride by a driver who said her trip was too short to be worth his time.
Jenna Leniczek was visiting with friends at a downtown bar on the weekend when she decided to call it a night. The 25-year-old got inside a Checker cab in the area of 10 Avenue and 3 Street S.W. but said the driver wouldn’t take her to her to her desired destination six blocks away.
“It was about 12:30 in the morning and I hadn’t been drinking,” Leniczek said. “I wanted to go back to my car.”
“It was dark out and I had to go under the train tracks, so I felt that I had to take safety precautions of jumping into a cab.”
According to Leniczek, the driver refused to make the trip.
“I was shocked, absolutely shocked.”
Alone and uncomfortable making the trek back to her vehicle through downtown Calgary by herself, Leniczek tried again.
“I jumped in another cab, and he was hesitant,” Leniczek said. “I asked him ‘do you have a daughter?’ and he said ‘yes’ and I said, ‘well would you make her walk in the dark?’”
Leniczek claims the driver only accepted her fare when she offered him a $20 bill for the short trip.
According to the city’s Passenger and Driver Bill of Rights drivers are allowed to refuse or terminate a trip but only if passengers are disorderly, abusive or impaired.
Layna Segall, a spokesperson for the Checker Transportation Group, confirmed their drivers are not allowed to refuse fares based on trip length.
“We certainly don’t condone this,” she said.
Segall said they hadn’t received any official complaints about the incident, and Leniczek confirmed to Global News she didn’t get the taxi number for either of the vehicles, and didn’t report the incident to the City of Calgary or Checker Transportation Group.
“I just hope that some people learn from my mistakes – they should be getting these cab numbers so that they can be reported and taken off the streets, and they don’t give good cabbies a bad name,” Leniczek said.
“Honestly, I’ve had some really great experiences with Calgary cabs before so I was quite shocked by this.”
Leniczek posted a Facebook status describing her experience on Sunday morning. By Tuesday at 10 a.m. it had been shared over 2,500 times.
“It absolutely spread like wildfire,” Leniczek said.
Segall said on Tuesday morning they hadn’t been able to get in touch with Leniczek, but did hope to speak with her about the incident.
BELOW: Read Jenna Leniczek’s Facebook post