Last Updated: 201601
Backpackers will usually choose public transportations such as metros or buses when it comes to traveling abroad due to the budget issue. But if you are more of a night owl or traveling a more remote area, then you might still run into the situation of riding a taxi. So we're going to introduce in this article the rates of taxis and things to watch out for in Taiwan.
Taiwan doesn't have a regulated car model for taxis, but it does regulates certain features such as the car needs to be painted yellow and have a license plate with white background and red letters. The light box on top of the taxis will usually have words such as "Personal", "TAXI","Car For Rent". Because of the yellow paint all over, Taiwanese taxis would sometimes be nicknamed as "Little Yellow".
How Do I Get a Cab? Are They Easy to Get?
- Depending on your location, if you're in the metro area (especially in Taipei City), then taxis would literally be everywhere on the road with a single wave of hand.
- If you're in a metropolitan area outside of Taipei City, you can also call or use the Apps to get a taxi. (Refer to the list below)
- If you're not in the metro area, we suggest asking the local convenience store or the information center at the tour sites to call the local taxi companies for you
- Taiwan's two major chained taxi companies' informations
How Much Do They Charge?
- Taiwanese taxis are required to use a meter device that follows a rate system, so your charge is automatically added according to the system instead of the driver charging whatever comes out of his mouth. Most of the drivers in the metropolitan area will follow the rules; however when traveling outside of the metro area it's wise to ask the driver before entering the car whether they use the meter or simply peek if there's a meter on the front seat area of the cab.
- Different cities have different base prices, Taipei City is NT.70 for the cheapest, Taoyuan NT.80, Taichung, Tainan, and Kaosiung are NT.85, Hsinchu, Changhua, Chiayi, and Taichung are NT.100, and lastly Ilan NT.120 for the most expensive.
- After traveling over 1250~1500 meters, every additional 200~250 meters will charge an extra NT.5, if the idling time is over 3~5 minutes it will also charge an additional NT.5. (The price ranges differ from city to city.)
- Riding between 11pm and 6am will trigger the Nightly Additional Charge(About 20% of the base price)
- During the Chinese New Year, there will also be additional change according to each city's regulations(NT.20-T.60)
- Even though the regulation is to charge according to the rates table, long distance trips(cross cities or remote area) are often negotiated prices. These prices can vary greatly depending on the route condition and time, so we suggest you ask the hotel desk or the locals first.
- The most common scenarios that backpackers will need to take the cabs are from the airport into the city:
Taipei Taoyuan Airport to Taipei City is about NT.1200
Kaosiung Airport Kaosiung City is about NT.300
- Just a friendly reminder, Taiwanese taxis typically don't have a tipping culture, so you can simply pay the fare that the driver tells you.
How to Pay
Aside from the two major taxi companies, Taiwanese taxis are paid by cash. The two major taxi companies described above can use credit cards or EasyCard to pay for the far(Specify when reserving the taxi online or by phone)
- Selected tour sites or areas have the option of an all-day taxi package, it would be more convenient and can be requested at the hotel's desk.
- When riding a taxi, both the front and the back seats need to wear seat belts; otherwise the passengers are responsible for the fine if caught.
- Drivers will not offer you the receipt, but they're obligated to give if you ask.
- Certain parts of Taiwan has private and illegal taxi companies, modified from private cars. Unless you know Chinese as your first language or the Taiwanese traffic inside out, we strongly don't suggest you take these cabs in case of blackmailing or security issues.
Translated by Nasha