This cab driver drove a stranded student from Spain to Italy free of charge


Giada Collallto had been studying in Bilbao when the pandemic struck. Her semester was prematurely ended. She was determined to go home. She booked a ticket from Madrid to Paris to Rome, then to Venice. Unfortunately, the Italian government already implemented strict quarantine measures.

Photo by Chiara Collalto

Giada was left stranded in Madrid. All hotels were closed, with no public transport to go back to Bilbao. Thankfully, a friend of hers from Bilbao contacted a 22-year-old taxi driver named Kepa Amentagi. He immediately drove nine hours from Bilbao to Madrid and back. However, when they returned, Giada’s apartment was no longer available.

Kepa invited her to his parents’ house to spend the night. “His parents and his two sisters welcomed me as a member of the family,” Giada recalled. The next morning, Kepa drove the 1500 kilometer ride to Venice. Giada insisted on paying but he only said, “ I see you are in a difficult situation, don’t worry about the cost.”

“It’s something I will never forget, I was a complete stranger to this young man. I think this pandemic can bring out the best in people.” said Giada.

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