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Help on wheels

April 12, 2010
By Jodelle Greiner

When you hear something often enough, you know it's a good idea. Sami Saad El-Dein knew a taxi service was needed in Marshall, so he started one a couple weeks ago. Marshall Taxi runs from 7 a.m.-1 a.m. seven days a week. To get a ride, call 829-3055.

"What's different about our service, compared to the MAT (Marshall Area Transit) bus, is you talk directly to a driver and we call as we're coming to pick you up," El-Dein said.

"You know exactly when we're coming. Plus, it's direct service, no extra riding around town."

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Photo by Jodelle Greiner

Sami Saad El-Dein said his new taxi service in Marshall includes trips around Marshall, but he will also drive patrons outside of town — as far away as the Twin Cities or Sioux Falls, S.D.

El-Dein has been running Downtown DD, "a free, safe and sober transportation from area bars and restaurants," he said, for the past five years.

"I've heard two things more than anything," he said. "'You guys should be seven days a week and do a taxi service.' So we're doing both."

People who need a ride home after a night on the town can call 828-5443 from 5 p.m.-2 a.m. Wednesday through Saturday.

"We work with nine different bars and restaurants," El-Dein said. "We take you to the bar and home from the bar."

Marshall Taxi will offer other services, he said.

There is a flat $5 rate for one-way trips in Marshall, El-Dein said. For out-of-town trips, they charge by the job.

There's a special $7 fare for what El-Dein calls a "turn-around trip for quick errands" like going to pick up a prescription - something that won't take long and the driver will wait for you and take you back right away.

"We go out of town, as well," El-Dein said. "We can run people where they want to go."

Long trips would have to be done by appointment at least 24 hours in advance, he said, such as trips to the Twin Cities or Sioux Falls, S.D., to catch flights or go to the doctor.

"We can cater just about any kind of demand," he said.

Right now, there are two cars in his fleet and he and a few others are doing the driving to cover all the shifts.

"Right now, I have enough drivers, but I'm hoping to need more," he said. "If I've learned one thing, it's everything takes time. In time, I hope to have a thousand drivers," he said with a laugh.

"Marshall has grown to a place where it has almost all the amenities of a big city and a taxi service is one of those amenities people want," El-Dein said. "I feel it's going to be a good service."

 
 

 

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