Discount Cab is marking Earth Day by attempting to break its record for most taxi trips dispatched in one day, with Valley charity Homeward Bound benefitting from the record-breaking attempt.
The green cab company will donate $1 for each ride it makes on Earth Day Friday, as the company tries to break its all-time record of 13,214 dispatched rides in a single day.
Earth Day is significant because it also marks the third anniversary of Discount Cab introducing Toyota Prius taxis into its fleet. The cab company initially pledged to incorporate 250 hybrids but has outpaced that number with 350 such cars on the road. The current fleet saves 1.4 million gallons of fuel each year as well as 14,000 tons of carbon dioxide.
"We found real acceptance from both our passengers and our drivers with the Prius platform," said Craig Hughes, CEO of Total Transit, Inc., the parent company of Discount Cab. "We've been blown away by not only the durability of the cars but also the positive response we've received from customers."
The Discount Cab customer base has grown by 30 percent for each of the past three years. Hughes believes the hybrid cabs have had a lot to do with that increase.
"We're averaging more than 10,000 trips per day during a period when many taxicab companies are losing business," he said, adding that many customers specifically request a Prius when making a reservation.
The company made another significant Earth Day contribution last year, installing $750,000 worth of solar panels at its Glendale headquarters, saving 25 percent of its electricity cost each year. The 400-panel system is one of the largest installations in the Phoenix metropolitan area and reduces emissions by 377 tons per year, or the equivalent of 9,700 trees absorbing the CO2 gases.
In addition to its many green initiatives, Discount Cab gives back to the community in other ways. The company's "Free Ride Back" program keeps inebriated drivers off the streets andthe Total Transit Foundation gives back financially to worthy causes in the community.
For more information on Total Transit and its companies, visit www.totaltransit.com.