Music City Taxi Pro
Music City Taxi Pro
Nashville exudes all of the charm and hospitality expected from a Southern capital. It is also home to America’s largest Kurdish population. Nashville is a city that is growing and changing, with all the benefits and challenges that come from a diverse population.
Over 70 percent of taxicab drivers in Nashville are from foreign countries, and many of them are refugees from Somalia, Sudan and Iraq.
As with any city, taxi drivers are some of the first people that visitors encounter. It’s essential that drivers are hospitable and knowledgeable, that they are able to communicate professionally with customers, follow directions and navigate around the city.
When drivers fail to meet customer service expectations, they acquire a reputation that hurts their business and also the city. Passengers complained of drivers often having difficulty speaking fluent English and struggling to find Nashville landmarks and locations. Drivers were often unfamiliar or uncomfortable with culture and customs that Americans take for granted, such as polite gestures and making small talk.
That is why Tennessee Foreign Language Institute works in partnership with Transportation Licensing Commission, Nashville Convention and Visitors Corp to deliver Music City Taxi Pro, a 3-day program that all Nashville taxi drivers must pass before being granted a cab license.
In addition, all current and renewing drivers are required attend an annual half-day Hospitality Training session delivered by Nashville Convention & Visitors Corp.
What difference is Music City Taxi Pro making?
Since 2009, Music City Taxi Pro has meant that Nashville’s new taxicab drivers are better qualified than their predecessors:
- more fluent in English;
- better navigation skills;
- local knowledge of landmarks and attractions;
- improved understanding of cultural and customer service; and
- clear understanding of laws specific to the taxi industry.
Taxi Pro addresses problem areas head-on before new drivers get behind the wheel of a taxicab. Testing on each day of Taxi Pro training ensures that each driver has learned the critical skills needed to be successful.
All of this adds up to good news for drivers and passengers: a more sustainable business and better standard of living for each taxi driver and their family, as well as a more attractive location for leisure and business visitors to the city.
Who delivers Music City Taxi ?
Tennessee Foreign Language Institute (TFLI), an agency of the State of Tennessee established in 1986, is dedicated to serving the public sector, business community and private individuals in realizing their intercultural communication goals. Taxi Pro is a natural part of TFLI’s history and mission to remove barriers to success for refugees and improve services for Nashville residents and visitors.
TFLI has overall project management responsibility, administers the language testing component and delivers part of the training sessions.
Transportation Licensing Commission (TLC) is a department of the Metro Government of Nashville & Davidson County, Tennessee, and is responsible for the licensing and regulations of all taxicabs.
Nashville Convention & Visitors Corp (NCVC), a non-profit organization, brands, sells and markets Nashville, Music City, to the world as a premier entertainment destination for travelers who seek authentic and unique leisure and convention experiences. NCVC delivers the Customer Service and Disability session, and the annual Hospitality training.