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5 Tips for Traveling by Taxi in Madrid

Saturday, August 16th, 2008

If you go on holiday to Madrid, Spain it’s quite likely that you’ll need to take a taxi at some point during your stay. Here is some information on costs, techniques and what to do if you get ripped off.

1. The first thing to know is that the standard minimum fee varies depending on where you pick the taxi up from. For example, if going from Barajas Madrid airport the starting fare will be €5. If you go from a bus station, a train station or any taxi rank with ‘supplemento autorizado’ written on it, the price is a bit less but will still start off at €2.5 euros.

2. There are two types of taxi fare in Madrid and they are named, appropriately enough, Fare 1 and Fare 2. Fare 1 is for off-peak times, which basically means weekdays from 6am to 10pm. Fare 2 is therefore for all other times, ie. from 10pm to 6am and on weekends. This may seem a bit confusing, but taxis will generally state which fare they are charging on a sign on the top of the car.

3. The charging works by the kilometer, but again this will be different depending on what zone of the city you are traveling in. For example, if traveling in Zone A during the day you will pay less than if you are traveling in Zone B at night.

4. The standard taxi in Madrid is white with a diagonal red stripe across the front door, although there are other private companies which you can phone to pick you up. If no taxis are stopping for you, look out for a green light which is always shown if a taxi is free.

I5. f you’re not happy with the service, ask for a receipt and make sure to get the driver’s ID number and taxi number. You should then take these with the details of your journey to a tourist information office where they will help you to file a complaint.

“Taxi Ride” photo originally posted by fotologic

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About the author

Venere Travel Blog writer jon france

Jon has travelled widely across Europe, and is always keen to share the hidden gems he has discovered whilst on the road. He is a freelance writer specialising in travel writing, and his dream destination is Madagasgar.

6 responses to “5 Tips for Traveling by Taxi in Madrid”

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  1. Woody says:
    August 16th, 2008 at 11:54

    Thanks for the travel information… I completely agree with you…Being a visitor you will have to travel a lot in taxi…

    Your guidance will be very useful for me when I reach Madrid.

  2. Taxi Trainer says:
    August 17th, 2008 at 17:48

    Brilliant info. There’s loads of things in different countries that we can’t be expected to know. At least we can be prepared for the taxis now. Better info from you than from my uncle who lives there!

  3. Jon France says:
    August 25th, 2008 at 11:16


    Glad you enjoyed the article! Taxis can cause some real headaches when travelling abroad, especially as you never know if you are paying over the odds. Hopefully this will help when you arrive in Madrid!

  4. vi says:
    October 1st, 2008 at 04:20

    Even in my own country, I get ripped off by taxis. LOL. Are there free Madrid maps that I can pick up at the airport so I have a better idea of what zone I’m in? Thanks.

  5. Jon France says:
    October 2nd, 2008 at 21:41

    Typical isn’t it! There will be cheap maps available, but I couldn’t confirm whether there are free ones at the airport so you might have to look around a bit.

  6. Hermosa says:
    October 28th, 2008 at 00:19

    More information would include your standard taxi being red. Orange taxis only work the international airport. All taxis should have a taxi meter. If a “taxi” does not have a meter it is an illegal taxi. Wait for a real taxi. When hoping in a taxi make sure the driver uses the meter. If not, ask him to “use la maria”. If you are familiar with the area or the meter is broken negotiation always works as well.

    The worst is if you need a lift after 10pm. Taxis will add an additional 20%-30% to your fare, so try to figure out other arrangements to get back to your hotel (unless you’re completely knackered!)

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