Thursday, 3 April 2008

Why we do the knowledge

Quite a few customers ask if it's still worth doing the knowledge with new technical innovations like Sat-Nav. The answer is simply yes. I'm sure that people asked similar questions when the A-Z map of London was first published, but still, it's just another tool that we can add to assist us in the job.

Of course we occasionally make mistakes like when I misheard the passenger wanting to go from Victoria to Adeline Place. What she actually said was Adelaide Street. So having driven past her intended destination and then all the way back to just opposite Charing Cross, I offered her the ride for free. "Nonsense," she said. "I would have still paid you and given you a tip, here's a tenner for you!". I tried to refuse but she was insistent.

Sometimes you also hear of stories about passengers not paying but how about a mate of mine who took a rather drunk American to one of the Mayfair Men's club (Didn't these used to be strip joints a few years back?). With a whole £4.80 on the clock the passenger gave my mate two fivers and got out of the cab, not waiting for his change. On reaching the door of the club he suddenly turned back to the cab and said, "Hang on, I haven't paid you" and promptly gave the driver another fiver.

Anyway, back to sat-nav. Similar to the coach driver who took a coach load of school kids to Hampton Court, near Highbury corner, instead of to Henry VIII's palace, a mini-cab firm got it spectacularly wrong when trying to get to Stamford Bridge to see Chelsea play.

Yes, I think we still need the knowledge.

11 comments:

Just a bloke said...

Kev, very interesting blog thanks. I understand where you are coming from with the difficulties you have in fitting in work around child care. My wife is at Uni training to be a midwife so anything I want to do plays second fiddle.

I've often thought of doing the knowledge but I think it impossible having to give up work for that long. Anyway Good look and I'll keep an eye out for fresh posts!

Regards

Paul

Kev said...

You don't have to give up work Paul. There are quite a few people (probably the majority) who do a full time job as well as doing the knowledge.

I was lucky that I was already at home before starting the K, and so we only had to suffer the costs of actually doing the knowledge over three and a half years.

Of course it might take a bit longer and cause you added grief while you're out on the bike or tucked away in a corner in front of the map, but the flexibility that the job eventually gives you is well worth it.

Just a bloke said...

I'd thought it was full time training. Going to need to give this some more thought and do some research.

Nice one!

Paul

Kev said...

You can start off part time. THere are a lot of people doing the knowledge, holding down a full time job, and keeping families going.

There comes a stage when you really do need to consider getting into the knowledge full time, just so that you can cross the finish line without too many other distractions.

At the start you'll need to ride the 320 "Blue Book" runs. Then you need to revise them. I used to ride four a day and then do two lots of half hour revision (callover) of those runs. Even if you only do two a day, that's only 160 days to get the foundations set.

Of course, everyone goes at their own pace, but set yourself a target and try to work to that. Pop into one (or more) of the knowledge schools and see if they can give you any pointers.

Just a bloke said...

Kev thanks for taking the time to post. On further research I've found a number of schools do a free intro session for those thinking of doing the Knowledge so I'll probably pay one of them a visit.

I'm thinking I'll look at it with a view of starting next year which is when the wife finishes Uni, it'll give me time to do the CBT etc. I'd be travelling up from the Crawley area of Sussex so I'd probably need something bigger than a scooter:( Perhaps your advice here is worth a main post when you get chance as I'm sure many will find it a help.

Cheers Paul

Anonymous said...

Thanks for your post on wizann kev, Your posts were a great help to me before you finished, and to many others. Glad your doing well out there, and hope to join you soon. IanSE

BDL said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
BDL said...

Oi Kev, get blogging you lazy git - even I manage to update mine at least once a week or so!!!!

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