By Ryan Richardson
Globe Staff Writer
JOPLIN, Mo. —
Party-goers looking for a safe way home on New Year’s Eve will be able to use the Alert Cab program through Missouri Eagle LLC.
The program offers revelers a free ride home and is sponsored by Anheuser-Busch Inc. nationally. The Alert Cab program is part of the “Grab Some Buds” campaign that provided 260,000 safe rides last year. The program brings together local distributors, cab companies and retail establishments to provide a safe alternative to patrons.
Mike Pawlus, owner of The Kitchen Pass, 1212 S. Main St., said that the program has been in place for so long that customers will ask ahead of time about the free cab vouchers.
“Patrons use it up and we are out of passes pretty quickly,” Pawlus said. “This program is great, and it is kind of a no-brainer to get home safely. If people can’t take advantage of a free cab ride ahead of time, they should already have a safe ride planned. There is no reason anyone should drink and drive.”
Each bar receives a limited amount of vouchers to use during the New Year’s holiday. Patrons who receive a voucher have to provide a home address for the cab voucher to be used.
“It’s a direct ride home,” Pawlus said. “They can’t use it just to go to another bar.”
AAA Taxi will also be in service during the holiday. David Singleton, a driver for the Joplin company, said that the drivers will be available 24 hours a day during the holiday.
“This is easily our busiest day of the year,” Singleton said. “People realize that it’s better to take a cab than the alternative. It just makes sense.”
AAA Taxi will have 14 drivers on hand during the holiday rush. Cab rides through the company run $6 for the initial pickup and $2 per mile. The company services all surrounding areas up to 300 miles away.
To contact AAA Taxi for a ride, call 417-781-8294.
P.J.’s Cab in Neosho is offering $8 rides to anywhere in Neosho with an additional charge of $2 per person. The company is also taking advance orders to avoid waiting during New Year’s Eve. To contact P.J.’s Cab, call 417-451-3767.