RamRide Vs. Taxi Cabs

Nov 042003
Authors: Holly Stollsteimer

RamRide is a success for students, but for cabdrivers the

program may not have been such a good idea.

Larry Johnson, operation manager for Shamrock Yellow Cab, said

he saw a decline in service the first weekend RamRide was


“Everybody who worked said it was slower than usual,” Johnson


He said he didn’t know whether it was RamRide affecting business

or not.

“Being the manager, I want all the business,” he said.

For the most part he’s got it. Shamrock is the only taxi service

in Fort Collins.

Johnson said cab fair for Shamrock would not change due to

RamRide competition. Shamrock charges $4.50 for the first mile and

$2 for every additional mile.

Despite the prices Shamrock offers, theater and speech

communication junior, Karla Fremaint said she would no longer

consider using cabs while at CSU.

“I think that (cabs) are useless to me now, because RamRide is

free,” Fremaint said. “I know cab drivers have a job to do, and

that’s how they make money, but I personally won’t be using them


Fremaint, 20, said she likes the concept of RamRide, and feels

when she turns 21, the program will provide for a more enjoyable

evening knowing she won’t have to search for a designated


While Shamrock had a drop in clientele, RamRide has seen an

increase in program users. The program gave 562 students a ride

home Halloween weekend, an increase of 80 students since its

opening weekend, according to Kyle McCarthy, RamRide director of


McCarthy said he hasn’t heard any complaints from Shamrock.

“This is actually kind of surprising,” McCarthy said. “I thought

they’d have been all over us by now.”

McCarthy said he is impressed by the outcome of RamRide.

“I think this is the best service (the Associated Students of

CSU) has ever done,” he said.

Although over 1,000 students have used RamRide the past two

weekends, Sergeant Chris Wolf of the CSU Police Department said

there isn’t any evidence the program prevents DUIs.

“We still had four DUIs on Halloween weekend,” Wolf said. “Of

the four DUIs, three of them were students.”

He stated last year, CSU had one DUI for the entire Halloween


Wolf recommended the program be checked again for DUI prevention

in six months, in order to be able to see any change.

Still, Wolf said the program sounds fairly successful.

“If someone uses (RamRide) that was going to drive, then it’s

probably a good program,” he said.

According to McCarthy, almost all RamRide users have said

something about their previous DUI experiences.

“Almost everyone who got in the car said something like ‘This

means no more DUIs for me.’ A lot of people who used the service

said they’d had DUIs before,” McCarthy said.

On average, Wolf said the CSUPD see three to six DUIs on any

given Friday.




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