NEW YORK (1010 WINS) — Just a month after an undercover investigation showed taxi drivers refusing fares headed to the outer boroughs, one New York City cabbie agreed to drive his passengers across the country – to Los Angeles.

John Belitsky, the son of a former NYC cab driver, and his friend Dan Wuebben decided to try something they thought “would be a lot of fun.”

Sonia Rincon With More On The Epic Cross-Country Journey

The two men traveled to LaGuardia Airport and inquired about having a cabbie drive them to Los Angeles in exchange for $5,000. Belitsky’s father told him that no driver would agree to take the deal, but he turned out to be wrong.

Belitsky, who spoke with 1010 WINS’ Justin Schrager Thursday afternoon, said driver Mohammed Alam first suggested he take a flight before stepping up and deciding “he would do it.”

1010 WINS’ Justin Schrager Interviews John Belitsky

Belitsky, Alam and Wuebben were approximately 400 miles from Los Angeles on Thursday afternoon and expected to complete their journey before Friday morning. The men embarked on the cross-country trip around 11 p.m. Saturday night.

Dan Wuebben, John Belitsky, Mohammad Alam (credit: NY2LAinacabs Youtube Channel)

So how is the cabbie holding up after so much driving? Alam told 1010 WINS he simply likes to drive.

“Nothing bothering for me.  Little tired, I feel good.  No problem at all,” he said.

As they moved ever closer to their destination, Belitsky said they had been able to take in the beautiful sites and scenes of the country, which included a stop at the Grand Canyon.

“That was inexplicably beautiful and mysterious and incredible,” he said. Alam also called his experience at the Grand Canyon “really beautiful and great.” He is also hoping to visit Universal Studios and many other sites in Los Angeles.

“I’m from Bangladesh.  When I was young, it was my dream — one day I will go to Universal Studios,” Alam said.

Belitsky said that he didn’t spend a lot of time planning on how to go about his goal, but “became really focused on pulling it off” after his father expressed doubts.

“It was just a really, kind of beautifully strange thing. So we did it. I really don’t think it’s that crazy either,” he said.

Friends have called and emailed Belitsky, expressing that they thought his journey was crazy and outlandish.

“A week of my life if I wanted to go on a vacation on a Carnival cruise ride, I’d be sitting on a ship in a floating prison having no fun at all,” Belitsky joked.

When asked what his favorite part of the entire trip has been, Belitsky cited “people’s reactions.”

“You’ll go inside to a gas station and the place will just erupt when they see this cab,” he said.

Belitsky is still unsure of his plans once he gets to California. Cab Driver Alam plans to meet up with a friend from Queens who flew to Los Angeles and will drive back to New York City with him.

As for Alam’s message for his fellow cab drivers? “Nothing is impossible in this world.  We can do everything whatever we want,” he said.

Comments (24)
  1. Mingliang says:

    I think that the driver should be happy because he can make money and take a trip with the passager. good deal

  2. scotonfire says:

    Turned down a fair from Toronto International to Vermont one time. No way my cab would have gone that far without breaking down.

  3. Imtiaz says:

    cash or credit?

  4. fred says:

    The Cabbie UNDERCHARGED for the Ride. The NYC Taxi Rate for out of NYC rides is Twice the meter. From NY to LA Appzx 3000 miles the Meter would have shown $6,008.50 with all the surcharges. The trip should have been $12,000. the $5,000 price tag is a bargain.

  5. Rupam says:

    wonderful journey! I would say Mr. Alam is NYCTLC Rep. doing great job. Tourists are innovative ………………

  6. Joe says:

    Great story, guess could also make one great movie like DUMB and DUMBER or DUMBER and DUMBERER………!!??

  7. nature dog says:

    totally cool. he got to go where he’d always wanted to go, saw things he never imagined. Perhaps he won’t get home with a profit but he’s had a bit of a subsidized vacation. What’s wrong with that? It’s the passengers who I think are a bit whacked for even wanting to go by taxi but I’m sure they had their reasons. No one’s hurt anyone here, let’em be.

  8. KPMc says:

    Half of NY is struggling to pay their rent and feed their families but these two schmoes have five grand for a cab ride. I believe people can spend their hard earned money on whatever they want but this just proves life isn’t very fair and humility is non-existent.

    1. Melia says:

      @KPMc I think you are missing the point- they had the money and wanted to do the trip. What is wrong with that? If they had taken their $5000 and gone to Europe for a vacation would you still be complaining?? At least their american dollars are staying in america and going to someone who is working HARD to pay their rent and feed their family…

  9. njguy35 says:

    This is by far the dumbest thing i ever heard. How in the world is this a great accomplishment ? I’m glad the cabbie got a nice amount of money for doing this, but i would much rather drive cross country with my wife, or close friends, instead of being in the back seat of nyc cab for that amount of time.

  10. WAQAR AHMED says:


  11. sal says:

    simply amazing story…..hope it will change the peoples thought about cabbies

  12. Chris P says:

    ” I’m certain Mr Alam will invest the money productively. Usually people of Bangladesh are folks of family , seldem have drug habits , and often are very bright and well spoken … I Congradulate Mr Alam and his family .”

  13. ace says:

    Boy was this dumb….

    what a waste of 5 grand
    get on a plane and fly…..

  14. robert matulac says:

    Its great to hear stories like this were people of different culture get together and accomplish something great regardless of what it is. The cabbie hit it on the head when he said that he loves this place and he can accomplish anything. Good for them.

  15. SteveP says:

    $5,000 to go to LA?????? What were these guys carrying in their luggage which prevented them from taking a plane??? I wonder…….

  16. TommyC says:

    Love the story….but how much was the one way gas bill? I’m not sure this was a profitable fare

  17. vat33 says:

    hmmm. wonder if he’ll be able to pick up a JFK fare from LAX.

  18. Franklin Keller says:

    Was his tip is 20 percent of the fare?

  19. Tony says:

    Rite on . .life is made up of these once in a lifetime moments . .glad you grabbed this one . .drive on . .

  20. Larry Schwarz says:

    They should taken I-80 from NYC here to Salt Lake City.Seen our beautiful City.Then head south on I-15,stopping in Las Vegas then onto LA.I believe I-15 goes right into the 405 (san diego freeway) correct me if I am wrong please.

  21. ed says:

    great story, Drive on!

  22. Howard A. Sinclair says:

    Cool, incredible and amazing!!!

  23. Larry Schwarz says:

    I am happy both these men and the cab driver got to enjoy this.However for me,I will fly into LAX and get there in 6 hours.

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