A long time ago, when people would hail cabs around New York City, cab drivers would be visibly annoyed if a passenger requested a ride to Brooklyn. In fact many cab drivers would reject fares to Brooklyn. Things have changed. Now Brooklyn's streets are filled with cabs, making hailing a cab an easier alternative to calling a car service (yes, in the age of Uber, they still exist) or getting a cab with an app. If you want to use an old school yellow or green cab, here's the skinny on hailing one in Brooklyn.
In fact, you have choices. You can hail a lime green cab. Or a traditional yellow cab.
So if you plan on flagging a taxi on the street, here's the rule of thumb: you can flag a yellow cab from Manhattan to Brooklyn in midtown and downtown; you can flag a green or a yellow cab on the edges of Manhattan (see the guidelines, below). And, if you are traveling from Brooklyn to anywhere, and want to hail a cab on the street, you can flag either a green or yellow cab.
1. Where can you flag a green cab?
- Manhattan (but only north of West 110th street and East 96th street)
- the Bronx
- Queens (excluding the airports), and
- Staten Island
- They may drop you off anywhere.
2. Suppose it's bad weather. Can you call a green cab? Yes. Because each green taxi is associated with a local car service, you can order one by phone. However, the same restrictions apply: only if the pick up is in northern Manhattan, the Bronx, Queens, Brooklyn and Staten Island and at the airports. So, no, you cannot call a green cab to come get you from Times Square!
3. Can you get a Cab from an App on your smart phone, and what are other great Apps to use in Brooklyn? Yes. Although UberT was discontinued in the spring of 2016, you can still get a green cab with UberX, which is a great help if you're in an area like Bed Stuy or Ditmas Park. An added plus for UberX, according to the New York Post, "Green cabs also will take over UberWAV, the handicap-accessible option on the app." Another great app for getting a ride is Lyft, which also has an economical rideshare option.
4. What's the idea? The Boro Taxi service was meant to serve areas that are not well served by yellow medallion cabs. Officially stated, "The goal of the Boro Taxi program is to improve access to street-hail transportation throughout the five boroughs – especially for persons with disabilities and people who live or spend time in areas of New York City historically underserved by the yellow taxi industry."
5. Is it cheaper? No, the price of the green and yellow cabs are the same.
6. Is the green cab environmentally friendly? Not particularly. The green cab is not, in environmental-ese, green.
7. Can you pick up both yellow and green cabs in Manhattan in certain locations? Yes. Find out about yellow cabs in Brooklyn.
8. What it's called: NYC's Taxi & Limousine Commission’s new Boro Taxi program is also known by the no-so-user-friendly name of "Street Hail Livery" program.
Long awaited, improvement in mobility and service came about after much political wrangling and some legal action as well. But that's all ancient history now, and you can actually stand on the street corner of Court and Atlantic or wherever, and wave down a taxi. Other good spots for finding taxis on the street are Clinton Street, which runs from Carroll Gardens to Brooklyn Heights, 5th and 7th Avenues in Park Slope, Fulton Street in Fort Greene, and Flatbush Avenue, which runs from Downtown Brooklyn to Flatbush.
For info, call the NYC Taxi and Limousine Commission: 718 391 5502. Expect to be put on hold for a few minutes.
Edited by Alison Lowenstein