Going Back to the Future in the Caribbean’s First Wi-Fi Taxi

By: Caribbean Journal Staff - October 21, 2015

By Alexander Britell

WILLEMSTAD — On Oct. 21, 2015 I got in a car and went to the future.

It wasn’t a DeLorean.

It was a boxy, yellow taxi. It didn’t run on soda cans and banana peels, just regular gasoline. And it couldn’t fly. Or at least I didn’t see it fly.

But make no mistake, this car was from the future — the future of the Caribbean. One where technology is harnessed for good, where dynamic ideas are executed instead of ignored.

Because when I looked at the front of the cockpit, there was a large sign: Taxi 17 Wi-Fi – and a password. And then I looked at my watch to check the date.

This car driven by Joe DeSouza was a Caribbean taxi with Wi-Fi. The first in Curaçao and probably the whole Caribbean.


Joe’s Wi-Fi Taxi was born after a simple problem.

One of his passengers needed to send an email — and asked him to drive back to the hotel to stop to send it.

“That stayed on my mind,” he said.

And so he asked his company to consider putting Wi-Fi in his taxi.

Instead of ignoring it, they acted.

Joe was the first taxi driver in Curaçao with Wi-Fi, equipped through a simple cellular router in his dashboard.


And yes, it’s fast Wi-Fi — I watched Video highlights from the New York Mets’ NLCS win over the Cubs – something you can’t even do at a lot of Caribbean hotels.

“Guests pay money and they have to feel comfortable,” Joe says. “Wi-Fi is not a luxury — it is a must.”

Who does he think he is? Dr. Emmitt Brown? Was there a flux capacitor behind me?

Because it may not seem revolutionary. But think how many times, without wanting spend hundreds of dollars in roaming fees, you’ve wanted to share that great photo of the beach on Facebook. Or needed to text your family that you had landed. Or simply wanted to look up where the restaurant you had heard about was. And you couldn’t, because wherever you were, it wasn’t connected.


Because in a region that desperately needs to innovate, Joe is a revolutionary. And we need more Joes.

It’s perhaps less unusual in Curaçao has always been innovative in technology. Indeed, the island’s tourist board provides free wifi for all of the waterfront area in downtown Otrabanda. This is another feather in its cap.

But Joe’s feat is something greater.

It isn’t a flying DeLorean. It’s Wi-Fi. In a taxi. In the Caribbean.

And I sure hope it’s the future.

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