The Unusual Reason Tourists are Getting Stuck at Howe Caverns
I'm trying not to giggle, but this "out-of-towner" problem currently facing many guests at the world-famous Howe Caverns is almost too much to process.
Howe Caverns, less than an hour west of Albany, NY, is one of New York state's major tourist destinations north of New York City. With underground boat rides, pitch-dark walks, and even spelunking opportunities, it's no surprise why. What is surprising, however, is why so many tourists are getting stranded there.
"Ongoing Problem" at Howe Caverns in New York
"There has been an ongoing problem that has now become a serious issue that we need to address", began a recent post from the official Howe Caverns Facebook page. They shared that more and more often, customers have been taking taxis and using ride share apps as transportation to the caverns. The main issue is that while they might get driven to Howe Caverns, there's no one to take them back:
We are in a VERY RURAL area... [and] taxis, Ubers & Lyfts have refused to return to pick [customers] up and they were stranded, in the middle of nowhere, with no means to return to where they came from. Please note that we cannot and do NOT provide transportation back to your point of origin.
Tourists "Stranded" at Howe Caverns in New York
Luckily, this is common-knowledge to most rural New Yorkers. While we might be lucky enough to score an Uber from a New York City airport to our home in the Hudson Valley, for instance, we would never imagine we could get the same treatment on a return trip. Thanks to a "glitch" of sorts, however, many tourists can be led to believe they're not doing anything wrong.
The Center of the Problem
"It’s good that you have posted this warning here and on your site, because on the Uber app you CAN select Howe Caverns as a pick up with drop off being in Albany... even those who check ahead of time with the ride share apps would be misled to believe they would be able to get a ride back home", said one commenter.
As of publishing, Howe Caverns has amended their initial statement to read that "although we are listed as a pickup location on Uber and Lyft's apps, drivers do not accept the ride and will not return to our property to pick you up". As one commenter joked, "That's the problem, there's never a livery stable nearby when you NEED one!"