There are a number of ways to get to and from the Hamptons: One could drive their own car, take the Long Island Railroad, hop on the Hampton Jitney, or snag a $795 seat on a luxury helicopter. But do Hamptonites find carting their bags back and forth from the city to be an inconvenience that they’d pay someone else to do for them?
As local entrepreneur Danielle Candela found it, the answer is yes.
Candela founded Tote Taxi in August of 2016, but things picked up for the business after she was awarded $15,000 at a Shark Tank-like panel in Southampton village called “Rip Tide: Sink or Swim” hosted by i-Hamptons last November. The prize money would go towards helping Candela start a courier service that launched over Memorial Day Weekend, specifically designed for people going to Montauk from Manhattan.
Tote Taxi is still in the early stages of business, with Candela herself making the deliveries on the weekends. Right now, clients can only use the service from Manhattan on Thursday, Friday, or Saturday, and from Montauk to New York on Sunday and Monday.
But Candela plans on expanding the business, and while right now it only has door-to-door pick-up and drop-off in Montauk, there is a pick-up station at the Spur in Southampton for those who live further west.
The company has also partnered with the luxury airline, Blade. When using the courier service with Blade, clients will get convenient door-to-door pickup not just in Montauk, but anywhere east of the canal.
Tote Taxi doesn’t have an app yet, so clients use the courier service’s website to schedule their bags to be picked up and dropped off. Basically, a client just enters their basic information, follows the prompts, pays the fee, and Tote Taxi will transport bags from their Manhattan apartment to their place out east.
Prices start at $39 for weekend bags, $49 for suitcases, $59 for golf bags, and $60 for bicycles.
While the busy season in the Hamptons spans a very limited three months, Candela told Curbed that Tote Taxi will continue to operate in the off-season by focusing on weddings. Though there isn’t an official partnership yet, Tote Taxi has been working and in communication with Gurney’s to focus on weddings, bachelorette parties, and other weekend-long events in the Hamptons.
Plans for the future of the courier service also include transporting luggage across the Hamptons and the North Fork, airport pick-ups, and a presence in luxury destinations where people are using public transportation.
When asked why she wanted to start a courier service for the Hamptons, Candela told Curbed “I want to change the way people travel. There’s Uber Eats, apps to pick up your laundry—why not do it for luggage?”