Two Route 66 lounges, the Trails Westand the Pow Wow, now offer free rides home to patrons who have had too much to drink.
Karen Alarcon, co-owner of Trails West, said she hopes customers will take advantage of the free service. “We have an employee that recently offered to give people rides home on Wednesdays and on the weekends,” said Alarcon. “So far she’s only given three people a ride home, but I hope more people will come out and take advantage of the free rides. They can come out and drink, have a good time and not worry.”
Capt. Oscar Gonzales, of the New Mexico State Police, said the free ride service is a good idea. “This is something everybody would like to see more of,” said Gonzales. “There is no problem with giving someone a ride home as long as it is not a commercial venture.” Jolene Szaloy, office manager for the Pow Wow, said the Pow Wow’s free ride service has been working out well. “It’s a lot better to have someone sober driving,” said Szaloy. “The police encourage us to do this. We will pick up people at local motels, even the airport, and bring them here and take them home. The people can relax while they are in the bar.”