Allen Miles and his Lincoln stretch limos. (Staff photo by Diccon Hyatt.)
Allen Miles and his Lincoln stretch limos. (Staff photo by Diccon Hyatt.)

Limo drivers can end up in some odd situations accommodating the needs of their customers. Like driving 80 mph down the Pennsylvania Turnpike hoping a police officer will pull you over and agree to escort you through traffic so Coretta Scott King can go to the bathroom.

Allen Miles has collected many such stories in his 24 years as a driver of taxis and limousines in the Trenton area. Miles, who now operates his own limousine service from his home at 7 Lopatcong Drive in Ewing, started out as a cab driver in downtown Trenton. Now he has three limos, driven by himself, his wife Glaceria, and another driver, his only employee.

(King, by the way, made it to the bathroom.)

King isn’t the only celebrity Miles has transported over the years. As a driver for the yearly National Baptist Convention that is held at different locations around the country, Miles had the likes of Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton and Johnnie Cochran in the back seat.

But despite all the high-profile rides, Miles most looks forward to giving ordinary people a lift in one of his posh luxury cars.

For many funeral or wedding parties or prom dates, it’s the passenger’s first time ever in a limousine. Miles’s limos have a TV, a DVD player and an icebox and look downright swanky.

“The everyday client is probably the best client because they get excited about it,” he said. “I’ve been in New York a few times where people from foreign countries actually take pictures with the car, or offer to pay me to take a picture of them in front of the car. Last time I was there, a guy from the Netherlands wanted to pay five dollars just to sit inside. I didn’t take the money. I told him and his girlfriend to just get in and sit down. They were so excited about it. It gives me a thrill that someone still gets excited about what you do.”

Miles has been operating Allen’s Limo in Ewing for the last seven years. Before that, he had a limousine business in Trenton, which in turn had grown out of his cab driving days. Miles had been working nights as a driver, while his day job was as a post office manager. Miles is now retired after 23 years of service to the post office.

Miles said driving a limo is much safer than driving a cab — you’re pre paid for your ride, so there’s no cash on hand. Nevertheless, he once had a sketchy encounter. One day, a man knocked on his door and asked for a late night trip to New York City.

“How many passengers?” Miles asked.

“One,” the man replied.

Feeling suspicious, Miles gave him a price he thought no one would accept. $800. But the man called his bluff, and Miles was forced to flat out turn him down.

“It wasn’t too long after that, maybe a month or two, that I read in the paper where this guy got busted on a drug bust traveling on the highway,” Miles said.

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Diccon Hyatt is business editor of U.S. 1. He has worked for Community News since 2006 and was previously community editor of the Ewing Observer, the Hopewell Express, the Lawrence Gazette, and the Trenton Downtowner. From 2003 to 2006, he was a general assignment reporter for the Middletown Transcript in Middletown, Delaware. In 2002, he graduated from the University of Delaware, where he was features editor of the student newspaper, The Review. He has won numerous awards from the Maryland-Delaware D.C. Press Association and the Association of Free Community Newspapers for features, news, and opinion writing. He is married and lives in Marlton, NJ.