Travel Tip #20: When to Take a Taxi
Sometimes we like our luxury. Hot showers, cold beer the occasional taxi cab. We know we should use public transportation: it’s cheap and environmentally friendly. But sometimes a flight departs too early in the morning or arrives too late in the evening to make this a viable option. Enter the luxury of luxuries of the budget-conscious traveler — the taxi cab. Cabs can cost around five times that of a public transit ride and often are not any quicker as they have to deal with traffic. So why bother? Convenience. When you have to make that early flight or it is just too dark to navigate your way through an unfamiliar city with luggage in tow, then a cab may be your best option.
If you taking a taxi from the airport, get an idea of what a ride to your hotel should cost by consulting a guidebook. Write down the address of where you are going in the driver’s native language (insert New York cabbie joke here) and ask about the cost. Most cabs are cash only, so make sure you have withdrawn local currency from an airport ATM. If you are taking a cab from your hotel to the airport, be sure to arrange this ahead of time. Concierges are glad to do it, but will not appreciate it if you ask them at 4:30am for a 5am cab ride.
Know Before You Go
When you are purchasing plane tickets, keep an eye on arrival and departure times and make a note of the ones where taking a taxi may be worth your money.
Taxis are a convenient way to get from Point A to Point B, but they are expensive, so use them judiciously.