“There used to be a strong belief that if you wanted to know what was really going on in a country, the best thing to do was to go there and ask a taxi driver.”
Michael Korda, Novelist
Pros and Cons of Working as a Taxi Driver
You think about becoming a taxi driver?
Make sure to check out all the pros and cons of being a taxi driver in this article first!
Chances are that you may change your mind and want to go for alternative job options instead.
Table of Contents
Being a Taxi Driver – Key Facts
|Short Job Description
|Taxi drivers are responsible to bring their passengers from A to B in a fast but yet safe manner.
|$32,000 per year on average, most taxi drivers make between $22,000 – $39,000 per year.
|Rather poor since you have to work at nighttime.
|Poor work-life balance.
|Physically / Mentally Demanding?
|Mentally demanding job.
|Poor since self-driving cars will replace many taxi drivers.
|No special educational requirements necessary.
Advantages of Being a Taxi Driver
- Taxi drivers can work with people
- You can keep our system running
- You don’t have to work outdoors
- Cab drivers can avoid physical work
- Taxi drivers can talk with people about latest news
- You don’t have to stare at a computer screen all day long
- Being a taxi driver can be fun
- You don’t need a college degree
- Taxi drivers don’t have to get into student debt
- You can earn money right after school
- Being a taxi driver is not that stressful
- Good job if you like driving
Taxi drivers can work with people
One advantage of being a taxi driver is that you can work with people while many other people like loan officers just work in the back office all day long.
While other people who work in office jobs often just sit in front of a computer all day long without almost any interaction with their colleagues, you will bring many different passengers from A to B.
This means that you can interact with your passengers and can also ask them about what’s going on in their lives and how they perceive the current state of the world.
Hence, being a taxi driver can be a good job for you if you are the type of person who likes to communicate with many different people and who isn’t scared to talk to people in general.
You can keep our system running
As a cab driver, you will also be pretty important to keep our system running.
If there were no taxi drivers, people would not be able to get from A to B in a fast and comfortable manner.
Sure, in big cities, people can also take public transport.
However, in rural areas or smaller cities where public transport is rather poor or even non-existent, it would be almost impossible to get around in an efficient manner, especially for spontaneous occasions for which you would not be able to use your own car.
Thus, while many of us take the presence of taxi drivers for granted, they play quite an important role in our daily lives and by becoming a taxi driver, you can be part of this important infrastructure.
You don’t have to work outdoors
Another upside to being a cab driver is that you can inside your car and don’t have to work outdoors.
This can be pretty convenient, especially during bad weather when it might rain or snow.
You can also avoid working in extreme heat like many construction workers have to.
In fact, there are still many jobs out there where you have to work under extreme conditions.
In contrast, as a taxi driver, you can work under rather comfortable conditions since you can use heating in your car if it is too cold and air conditioning if it feels too hot for you.
Cab drivers can avoid physical work
As a taxi driver, you also don’t have to work in a physical manner.
Sure, you will have to drive a car and have to focus on the traffic.
While this can be mentally demanding, you will not have to have any physical strengths for it.
In fact, sitting in your car and driving around can be really comfortable, especially if you are the type of person who loves this kind of life.
Also compared to many other jobs, you will not be that physically exhausted as a cab driver and can use your energy for other things you like after work.
Taxi drivers can talk with people about latest news
Another benefit of being a taxi driver is that you can also talk with people about the latest news.
In fact, you will always be up-to-date as a cab driver without even reading newspapers since your passengers will tell you almost everything that is going on right now.
People also love complaining and whining about things.
In turn, you will get plenty of information and also different views on the world and can get a more comprehensive picture of reality in general.
You don’t have to stare at a computer screen all day long
By becoming a taxi driver, you can also avoid working in an office job.
Many people just don’t like office jobs at all since they have to stare into a computer screen for many hours a day and they also don’t feel like they are doing anything productive.
Quite often, you are just preparing presentations or doing some research which will often not provide any long-term value.
Many people who work in office jobs also get quite frustrated due to that in the long run and feel like they are completely wasting their time.
As a cab driver, you can at least do something good for your passengers and also see different parts of your city instead of just staying in an office building all day long.
Being a taxi driver can be fun
It can also be fun to work as a taxi driver.
Quite often, you will have nice passengers that you really like to talk to.
You will also see your city from many different perspectives and you will also realize how different your city will look like during different times of the day.
Consequently, working as a taxi driver can also be pretty interesting.
You don’t need a college degree
You also don’t need extensive education for becoming a taxi driver.
Sure, you will need a taxi license and may need some additional training before you are allowed to work as a cab driver.
Yet, you don’t need to go to college and spend many years of your life on additional education after finishing high school.
Therefore, if you are the type of person who doesn’t like schooling at all, becoming a taxi driver may also be the right way to go for you in this regard.
Taxi drivers don’t have to get into student debt
Since you don’t have to go to college, you can also avoid getting into student loan debt.
In our current state of the world, it seems to be quite common to take on student debt to finance college degrees.
Sure, this can make college life much easier since people don’t have to worry about financial issues during this time that much.
However, college students have to pay the piper later on in their lives since they have to pay back those loans which can add up to enormous amounts of money.
Thus, while your friends may have to get into student debt to finance their degree and suffer from the problems mentioned before, you can avoid all those issues by becoming a taxi driver.
You can earn money right after school
You not only don’t have to go to college for becoming a taxi driver, but you can actually start earning money right after finishing school.
This means that you will earn money to become independent of your parents pretty soon as a cab driver while many of your school friends will not become independent until their mid-20s or even much later.
Being a taxi driver is not that stressful
While driving during rush hour can imply some stress, working as a cab driver is usually not that stressful most of the time.
In fact, you will be able to greatly improve your driving skills over time and the risk of accidents will not be that high as well.
Moreover, you will also learn how to ignore other road users who may try to make fun of you.
After a few years, many taxi drivers are just cool enough to do their job without caring about what people think about them and rather relax behind their steering wheel for most times of the day.
Good job if you like driving
In general, the job as a cab driver can be great for you if you really love driving.
Many people just love cars and want to be in them all day long.
If you are one of those people who also drive their cars for fun and not just to get from A to B, chances are that working as a cab driver will also rather feel like a hobby than like a real job to you.
Disadvantages of Being a Taxi Driver
- You have a big responsibility for your passengers
- Taxi drivers don’t make much money
- You don’t have a regular schedule
- Taxi drivers have to work at nighttime
- Some cab drivers even have to work on weekends and holidays
- Can be problematic for your family life
- Many taxi drivers don’t like their jobs after a while
- Difficult to switch fields
- Some passengers are just difficult
- Many taxi drivers suffer from overweight
- People may even attack you
- Almost no promotion opportunities for taxi drivers
- Driving during rush hour can be annoying
- Taxi drivers have low social status
- Cab drivers often have problems in the dating market
- Additional issues with ride-sharing and other competitors
You have a big responsibility for your passengers
As we have seen before, there are many advantages to becoming a cab driver.
However, there are still some downsides to this profession.
One problem with being a taxi driver is that you will have great responsibility for your passengers.
If you get involved in an accident, not only your own life will be at risk.
Also the lives of your passengers will be on the line and you should always be aware of this fact and drive in a responsible manner to minimize the risk for your passengers.
Taxi drivers don’t make much money
Another disadvantage of being a taxi driver is that you will simply not make that much money compared to judges and many other people who are able to make significantly more.
In fact, many cab drivers don’t make more than $45,000 per year and this will barely be enough to cover your basic expenses, especially if you live in big metropolitan areas where rents are quite high.
Some taxi drivers even become homeless sooner or later since they are simply no longer able to cover their basic expenses and their landlord just evicts them.
You don’t have a regular schedule
Cab drivers usually also don’t have a regular working schedule.
You will often never know when you will have to go to work the next weeks or months and your schedule may also change without prior notice.
This means that you will never be able to plan way ahead and you may also have problems with making plans for your vacation.
This can be really annoying and you should really be a spontaneous person since you will not become happy as a taxi driver otherwise.
Taxi drivers have to work at nighttime
Another downside of being a taxi driver is that you also have to work at nighttime.
We as humans have never worked during nighttime for thousands of years and we have just not evolved like that.
In former times, humans just worked during the day and slept after the sun went down.
By working at nighttime, we put ourselves into an artificial environment that is against human nature and cab drivers often have significant sleeping problems since their natural sleeping rhythm just gets destroyed.
Hence, before you decide for working as a cab driver, make sure that you are willing to work those extreme hours.
Some cab drivers even have to work on weekends and holidays
Taxi drivers not only have to work at nighttime, they often also have to work on weekends or even on national holidays.
This means that while all your friends will enjoy Christmas Eve with their families, you may be the one who will carry passengers from A to B and you should really ask yourself whether this is what you want to do with your life.
Can be problematic for your family life
Since you will have to work during many exotic times as a taxi driver, your job can also interfere with your family life quite a lot.
Your kids and your spouse will be pretty disappointed if you can’t celebrate important holidays with them.
Moreover, your spouse may also get pretty annoyed if you have to go to work at nighttime since you will often wake him or her.
Thus, working as a cab driver can be pretty toxic for relationships and many of those relationships will therefore not last for long.
Many taxi drivers don’t like their jobs after a while
Another indication that working as a taxi driver is not that nice is that many cab drivers just quit after a few years.
In fact, many people just work as a taxi driver to finance their degrees or to earn some money from a second job and quit once they get out of their financial problems.
Consequently, overall job satisfaction is rather low as a taxi driver and you may want to go for a different job that is more fun instead.
Difficult to switch fields
Once you become a taxi driver, it is also rather difficult to change careers.
Especially if you haven’t learned anything else that is valuable in the local job market, you may just get stuck in driving passengers from A to B since almost no company will employ you.
The few that would may offer even worse conditions than you are used to by your cab driving job.
Thus, before becoming a taxi driver, you should really make sure that this is your passion and that you want to do this job for the rest of your life since it will just be a struggle to get out of this cycle.
Some passengers are just difficult
Another downside of working as a taxi driver is that you have to deal with difficult people.
Sure, most of your passengers will be friendly and nice.
However, there will always be some passengers who will treat you quite poorly and who will try to bring you down.
Especially people who are drunk or use other substances tend to lose their minds and their manners.
Hence, make sure that you are willing to deal with those types of difficult people as a cab driver before choosing this profession.
Many taxi drivers suffer from overweight
Since cab drivers just sit in their cars most of their workday, many of them also suffer from overweight or even obesity.
This is simply due to a lack of exercise combined with rather unhealthy street food.
Overweight is not only unpleasant from a visual and attraction standpoint, but it can also lead to serious health issues in the long run.
People may even attack you
While many people will just try to bring you down verbally, some of them may even attack you.
In fact, there had been cases of passengers attacking cab drivers in the past and if you are really unlucky, this might also happen to you.
Some people may even damage your car and try to escape afterward.
Hence, working as a cab driver is not the safest job and you should make sure that you are willing to take that risk before deciding for becoming a taxi driver.
Almost no promotion opportunities for taxi drivers
As a cab driver, your promotion opportunities will be almost zero.
It doesn’t matter how well you do your work, you will just stay in your position since there are simply no promotions available in this field.
Even the best cab drivers will still be driving around in their cars and bringing people from A to B and they will also do so 20 years later if they still work in this field.
Thus, make sure that driving around in a car is really what you love to do since you will just not find any other jobs in this industry and you will also barely find any promotion options.
Driving during rush hour can be annoying
Another downside of working as a cab driver is that you will also have to drive during rush hour on a regular basis.
This will probably the worst time of the day for you since driving during rush hour can be pretty chaotic and you will also frequently get stuck in traffic jams.
Everyone of us who had been commuting for an extended period of time knows how annoying all of this can be and as a taxi driver, you will get the full experience of it.
Taxi drivers have low social status
You will also not be that popular in society as a cab driver.
Sure, you will play an important part to keep our system running.
People will just not appreciate you that much like people who work in other jobs where they can save lives.
Cab drivers often have problems in the dating market
Due to your rather low social status and your rather poor salary, you may also have serious problems in the dating market as a cab driver.
Social status and money still matter, even though many people may tell you the opposite.
Hence, be prepared to also have difficulties in this regard and that other people will just have it much easier than you when it comes to finding a partner.
Additional issues with ride-sharing and other competitors
Also overall job security as a cab driver is rather low.
In fact, since almost everyone can become a cab driver, you will just be replaceable.
Moreover, additional competitors will try to conquer the market and this may drive prices for taxi driving services down.
Ride-sharing will also exacerbate this problem.
As you can see, the long-term prospects are rather poor and you may also look out for different job options in this regard.
Top 10 Being a Taxi Driver Pros & Cons – Summary List
|Being a Taxi Driver Pros
|Being a Taxi Driver Cons
|Being a taxi driver can be exciting
|Taxi drivers have to work during rush hour
|Taxi drivers can meet many new people
|Many cab drivers quit sooner or later
|You always stay up-to-date
|Working at nighttime can be exhausting
|Taxi drivers can work in their cars
|Being a taxi driver can get boring
|Protection against extreme conditions
|You often have to work on weekends
|Taxi drivers can avoid physical work
|Problematic for your family life
|You get to know your city in detail
|Taxi drivers don’t make good money
|You can keep our system running
|Rather low social status
|Not that stressful
|Problems in the dating market
|Great job if you love driving
|Hard to change fields
Should You Become A Taxi Driver?
Now that you got all the advantages and disadvantages of being a taxi driver, you have to make your final decision whether you still want to become a cab driver or if you rather want to go for other job options instead.
Opportunities are almost endless and you should evaluate all the pros and cons carefully before making a decision that will likely impact you for the rest of your life.
If you still want to become a cab driver, you should also get detailed information on salaries, job prospects, future outlook, working hours, work-life balance, educational requirements, duties and job satisfaction of taxi drivers.
Also make sure to check out the following articles:
About the author
My name is Andreas and my mission is to educate people about the different career paths that are possible in our current state of the world. In my opinion, people often make the mistake to choose their profession solely based on how much money they can earn from it instead of doing what makes them really happy.
This is quite sad and I just want to give people a more objective picture of how a fulfilling career could look like. I did the same when I started working in consulting after finishing my Master’s degree in Economics. However, I’ve quit pretty soon after that since I haven’t found true meaning in my job.
Now I can do what I really love to do and I want to enable as many other people as well to go this exciting path towards happiness instead of money.
I conducted various interviews with employees to give you a good impression of what working in different fields will look like and that you can make the best possible decision regarding your future career choice.
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