Behind the wheel: Cab driving is the new bartending

Behind the wheel: Cab driving is the new bartending

A three part series on the taxi industry in Kelowna

Jordan Salahor moved to Kelowna, from the U.S., more than 13 years ago to play hockey – but he quickly realized his real potential was off the ice.

Instead the soon-to-be father went from playing with the Kelowna Chiefs to becoming an entrepreneur and owning his own taxi.

“It all started with my stepdad, he has been driving with CheckMate Cabs for about three or four years,” explained Salahor. “I was in the trades, and looking to switch trades, so in-between the switch he said if I wanted to earn some quick cash come drive a cab. So I did and now I am kind of addicted.”

That was a year ago when Salahor started driving, now he is an owner of his first vehicle and is looking to hire staff.

“I have always wanted to own businesses and into entrepreneurial stuff, but I never thought it would be a taxi,” he said.

The former hockey player takes pride in getting his car ready for the job as he considers the taxi to be a small business that he drives around in.

Salahor believes the customer service in the taxi industry is changing and becoming friendlier than in the past.

“In the States they have shields in-between the front and the back seat,” he explained. “If you watch on TV they (the customer) don’t even talk to the drivers. If you ever take a cab in the States you don’t say two words to the driver other than where you are going. But, with us it’s basically picking up your friend from the mall and taking them where they need to go. They sit in the front seat with you, they have a conversation.”

He likens taxi driving to bartending when it comes to hospitality.

“Bartenders talk to you and you tell them your life story. It’s kind of cool,” said Salahor. “I’ve noticed, being on the drivers side of it, that when there is more sociable drivers in the company, you attract more customers who open up to you a lot more.”

As a taxi driver Salahor said he aims to be more than just the guy who takes you from point A to point B, he instead hopes to get in touch with his customers.

READ MORE: Behind the wheel: Taxi driving as a career

READ MORE: Behind the wheel: From stay-at-home-mom to entrepreneur

READ MORE: B.C. to add hundreds of taxis, delays Uber, Lyft-style service again

This story is the final article of a three part series, titled Behind the wheel, a look at whose driving business in Kelowna.


@Jen_zee
jen.zielinski@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

(Dave Ogilvie/Contributed)
West Kelowna fire crews respond to injured mountain biker

The mountain biker reportedly has a hip injury about 1 km up the Smith Creek Road trail

Emily Steele holds up a collage of her son, 16-year-old Elijah-Iain Beauregard who was stabbed and killed in June 2019, outside of Kelowna Law Courts on June 18. (Aaron Hemens/Capital News)
Kelowna woman who fatally stabbed Eli Beauregard facing up to 1.5 years of jail time

Her jail sentence would be followed by an additional one to 1.5 years of supervision

This undated file photo provided by Ernie Carswell & Partners shows the home featured in the opening and closing scenes of The Brady Bunch in Los Angeles. Do you know the occupation of Mike Brady, the father in this show about a blended family? (Anthony Barcelo/Ernie Carswell & Partners via AP, File)
QUIZ: A celebration of dad on Father’s Day

How much do you know about famous fathers?

Asia Youngman (right) is pictured shooting another short film she wrote and directed titled Hatha. (Luba Popovic)
Peachland set to star in fantasy thriller film about N’xaxaitk’w — a.k.a. the Ogopogo

The film will follow an Indigenous teen as she navigates peer pressure, bullying and identity

Fruit farmers in the Okanagan and Creston valleys are in desperate need of cherry harvesters amid COVID-19 work shortages. (Photo: Unsplash/Abigail Miller)
‘Desperate’ need for workers at Okanagan cherry farms

Fruit farmers are worried they’ll have to abandon crops due to COVID-19 work shortages

Marco Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship during a press conference in Ottawa on Thursday, May 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada to welcome 45,000 refugees this year, says immigration minister

Canada plans to increase persons admitted from 23,500 to 45,000 and expedite permanent residency applications

Jeanette Megens
KCR: Volunteering is sharing your story

Kelowna Community Resources shares stories of its volunteers in a weekly column

Barbara Violo, pharmacist and owner of The Junction Chemist Pharmacy, draws up a dose behind vials of both Pfizer-BioNTech and Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines on the counter, in Toronto, Friday, June 18, 2021. An independent vaccine tracker website founded by a University of Saskatchewan student says just over 20 per cent of eligible Canadians — those 12 years old and above — are now fully vaccinated. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
At least 20% of eligible Canadians fully vaccinated, 75% with one dose: data

Earlier projections for reopening at this milestone didn’t include Delta variant

Cpl. Scott MacLeod and Police Service Dog Jago. Jago was killed in the line of duty on Thursday, June 17. (RCMP)
Abbotsford police, RCMP grieve 4-year-old service dog killed in line of duty

Jago killed by armed suspect during ‘high-risk’ incident in Alberta

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

The George Road wildfire near Lytton, B.C., has grown to 250 hectares. (BC Wildfire Service)
B.C. drone sighting halts helicopters fighting 250 hectares of wildfire

‘If a drone collides with firefighting aircraft the consequences could be deadly,’ says BC Wildfire Service

A dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is pictured at a vaccination site in Vancouver Thursday, March 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
NACI advice to mix vaccines gets varied reaction from AstraZeneca double-dosers

NACI recommends an mRNA vaccine for all Canadians receiving a second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine

A aerial view shows the debris going into Quesnel Lake caused by a tailings pond breach near the town of Likely, B.C., Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Updated tailings code after Mount Polley an improvement: B.C. mines auditor

British Columbia’s chief auditor of mines has found changes to the province’s requirements for tailings storage facilities

Starting in 2022, the Columbia Shuswap Regional District is extending dog control to the entire Electoral Area D. (Stock photo)
Dog control bylaw passes in Shuswap area despite ‘threatening’ emails

CSRD board extending full dog control in Electoral Area D starting next year

Most Read