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Lisbon Taxi Guide
The taxis in Lisbon are surprisingly good value for traveling around the city and are convenient for tired tourists or late night partygoers. The taxis of Lisbon are painted a distinctively cream colour and can be hailed from the street or from specially marked bays.
Lisbon taxi drivers are all registered and it is safe to hail them, even late at night. Most taxi drivers speak a little broken English and all use satellite navigation to find the final destination. All of taxis in Lisbon are metered so always insist on the metre, as a set price will usually be more expensive than the metered journey.
Lisbon Taxi Tourist Guide
There is a €2.00 euro minimum price for hailing a Lisbon taxi and the fare increases based on distance and time (traffic), journeys are 20% more expensive during the night hours of 9pm-6am. Lisbon taxis can be hailed from the road, if the light on top of the taxi is on it indicates that the taxi already has a fare. The two largest taxi companies within Lisbon are; Autocoope (Tel: 217932756) and Radio Taxis (Tel: 21811900).
All of Lisbon’s taxis are painted in a cream colour but there are still a few very old taxis painted black and mint green. This colour scheme prevents illegal taxis from operating and inside the taxi an identity badge should be on display. Lisbon’s taxis are usually Mercedes or large Peugeots with plenty of room for three passengers and space in the boot for luggage.
Taxis of Lisbon are only insured to carry up to 4 passengers (3 in the back 1 in the front) but late at night drivers may refuse front seated passengers if the taxi has a protective screen installed. There is a supplement for luggage but this is for all of the luggage and not per piece as often claimed by the taxi drivers collecting from the airport.
Lisbon Taxi Scams and Cons
Lisbon’s taxis are much better value in comparison to many other European capitals but due fuel prices fares are on the increase. As with all other countries, taxi drivers are always on the lookout for a way to make an extra euro or two and there is a small proportion who are completely dishonest. The larger concern once stepping into a Lisbon taxi is the erratic nature Portuguese driving, with their excessive use of both the accelerator and brake. While in a Lisbon taxi it is highly recommended that a seat belt is worn as Portugal has the highest traffic mortality rate in Europe.
Lisbon Taxis from the Airport
Fares originating from the airport maybe persuaded to provide a set price but this will always be more expensive than the metered price. The metro network now connects the airport to the historic centre so is probably the cheaper and easier option.
Lisbon taxi drivers have a tendency to drive off very quickly after the collection of the fare so ensure all belongings are with you before exiting the taxi especially cameras and wallets. The introduction of sat navigation has made it significantly easier to communicate with Lisbon taxi drivers, if staying at a hotel take the post code/zip code (a string of 6 numbers) and get the driver to enter this into the system if language proves to be an issue.