June 5, 2014
DMV Enourages Customers to "Know Your Ride"
If It's Not on the List, It's Not Recommended
RICHMOND – Whether you are hailing a cab back to your hotel after a day of walking in historic Old Town Alexandria, chartering a bus to take a large crew to Busch Gardens or Kings Dominion for the day, arranging transportation home after a night out on the town, or hiring a limo for a luxury ride to a late-spring or summer wedding, the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) urges Virginians to consider safety and security when using a for-hire transportation service.
DMV offers an online resource for Virginians who want to make the right choice as summer travel season approaches and all year long. To help you “Know Your Ride,” a list of registered and insured transportation services operating in Virginia is available on the DMV website at www.dmvNOW.com/knowyourride.
“When you hire a ride, you are placing your safety in the hands of that driver,” said Richard D. Holcomb, DMV Commissioner and the Governor’s highway safety representative. “I urge the citizens of Virginia to protect their families by using only companies that appear on DMV’s website as licensed transportation services. If it’s not on the list, it’s not recommended.”
DMV offers general tips for consumers before they secure any for-hire transportation. Customers should make sure the vehicle is equipped with working seat belts for all passengers and the Virginia vehicle inspection sticker and license plate decals are current.
When using for-hire transportation, ask in advance if there will be any additional charges for gratuities, vehicle cleaning, mileage and fuel costs. If you have to sign a contract, do not make payment until you have read the contract.
Many legitimate transportation companies now use technology as part of their service model, promoting and arranging rides through websites, apps, social media and other means. DMV is encouraging customers to do their research before utilizing any of the new smartphone-based transportation services, which allow people who need rides to use an app to find and pay a participating driver. Any of these companies not listed on DMV’s Know Your Ride website, and some of their drivers, operating in Virginia are doing so without proper licensing or other authorization to provide for-hire passenger transportation services.
DMV suggests that Virginians considering app-based transportation first determine the hidden risks if the rider, driver, or vehicle does not have specific insurance coverage. It’s a good idea to research any transportation service company to learn about its insurance coverage, vehicle maintenance and driver screening programs.
To file a complaint about a transportation service, you may contact the Office of the Attorney General’s consumer protection hotline, either at (804) 786-2042 or (800) 552-9963. You can also contact the Department of Motor Vehicles at (804) 249-5140 or file a complaint online.
Contact: Sunni Brown
*Virginia DMV is now on Skype, providing more on-camera interview opportunities for television stations outside of the Richmond market. Contact Sunni Brown for more information.