Do you get ripped off by taxis when you travel?

René’s Points for Better Travel has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. René’s Points for Better Travel and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers. Opinions, reviews, analyses & recommendations are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, endorsed or approved by any of these entities. This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our advertising policy, visit visit this page.

There are a ton of things I love about Sweden (can you tell?)! One of them is the mass transit. You can take a bus or train or trolley just about anywhere you want to go. From Gothenburg airport (and many others btw), I can hop the airport bus for about $ 25 round trip to the center of town. Then a tram to my mom’s place for $2. A taxi, when you ask for a “fixed price” before you get into the cab, one way runs you about $60. So, about ½ price (for my wife and I) if we can put up with a change, a little longer ride and some walking. If I have an early AM flight I take a cab, if not we tram and bus it!

There have been some recent news reports about taxi companies scamming tourists out of big bucks in “” as of late as you can see HERE and the follow-up article HERE.

Consumer advocate Christopher Elliott had one recently about “Do taxi drivers prey on tourists?“. And it would seem that even the taxi drivers themselves can some times be the victims of their own employers as you can see HERE.

I live in the midwest. We drive. I have taken a cab about once in 10 years locally to the airport as I usually hit up my friends to drive me to the SBN airport. Then, I take them out to dinner as I would rather enjoy time with them and food than give it to a cab driver (thanks Ralph and Byron btw)!

I love my Delta AMEX Reserve card and I think, other than Chase, their customer service to card holders is one of the best in the business. I have used their extended warranty claim when things have broken after paying for items with the card and they give you credit back almost instantly! That is real value beyond points and MQM’s. I have never had to challenge a charge from a Taxi, but I bet AMEX would go “to the mat” for me if I ever asked and felt ripped off.

So my question to readers – how do you all deal with taxis all over the planet? How do you know you are not getting scammed? Do you ask for a fixed price before the ride? I would love to know your tips and tricks to help me and other readers out there. Have at it – René


Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card
from American Express®
Click here for more information




  1. I have to say I felt totally ripped off by a cabbie from EWR to Jersey City last Sunday night. He wanted me to pay the return tolls to the airport as well as a big tip. A $46 fare – which he initially asked me to pay up front in cash – turned in to nearly $60.

  2. heck ya. 5 of us were taken for $60 in amsterdam, taking the cab from along side planet hollywood, to the train station. A 5min walk, lol

  3. In my opinion you can tell when a cabbie is trying to ‘take you for a ride’ other then the one you planned on taking. At the end of the ride, as I am already in the car with them, I give no tip and say, ‘When you take the long route and drive slowly your tip goes deeper in your passengers pocket. Remember that.’ Some get [edit], some realize that they tried to scam the wrong guy. Remember, tip is something for good service.

    One ride from IAD I got to my destination and pulled out my CC to pay.

    Driver: I can only take cash
    Me: I only have a CC
    Driver: No, No, I only take cash
    Me: Then I guess you aren’t getting paid for this ride
    Driver: Okay, give me the card

    Wow, look who takes CC’s now. Called Washington Flyer and they said all drivers MUST take a CC and took down his details.

    Then you get drivers, like one I had going to SFO, that said ‘They give me a credit for taking passengers to the airport. I’m just going to discount your ride by that amount’. If I recall it was like $4-6 dollars. That driver made that money plus extra in tip. Got the guy’s card and guess who gets called when I’m at SFO.

    Don’t give into the scare tactics or demands of the bad cabbies and reward the good drivers with the tips.

  4. Yes. Prague is a winner in this category. PRG to downtown was a tour of backroads to run up the meter. The return half-off coupon was simply the driver going straight to the airport. Also, as a DCer, the cabbies here are always trying to scam their passengers. I know exactly how much it should cost to get from my office to my home [within $0.50 or so]. 2 out of 5 trips the meter is running fast. The typical excuse – lie – is “it’s not my taxi, mine is in the shop.” I just pay what I know is owed and there is never an argument by the driver.

  5. Athens Greece, somehow I didn’t get a print out of the map for our hotel there and we decided to take a cab from the train station to the hotel because we didn’t know where it was. 2 cabs loaded us up and we got in, no meter on. I asked for him to turn on the meter and he grunted under his breath. Asked again, same thing. “whatever” I thought. We get to the hotel and it was literally 2 blocks away (ugh…). He says $30 each cab. I gave him the dirtiest look and promptly went to the back of his cab to get his license plate number. I’ve never seen a cabby run so quickly to stop me from doing that. He started going off in greek to me and I just ignored. I walked strait up to the hotel concierge and told them what was going on, they YELLED at him in greek and told him to get lost. Eventually we agreed to $5 a cab through the hotel. Great service from the hotel, CRAPPY cabbies there!

  6. all my life used cabs all the time —now stopped using taxi cabs– last Friday went from Athens to Paris took the metro cost 4.00 euros since over 65 yrs old ( taxi 40 euro),faster than taxi and clean — from CDG took bus to Hyatt Vandome 10 EUROS ( taxi 50-60 euros )clean and fast — all with no back talk or tip or extra luggage charge etc.

  7. My husband and I were warned about this ahead of time by two separate couples we know, but it was truly ridiculous when we experienced it for ourselves–In Morocco, EVERY taxi we took during our week there had a “broken” meter. We later found out we should pay no more than 30-40 dirhams (a couple few bucks)for your average taxi ride, and should definitely agree on the fare BEFORE getting in, since they will insist the meter is broken.

  8. I forgot to mention that also while in Morocco, one cabbie took us on a ride from our hotel to a restaurant through a neighhorhood with lots of twists and turns, lasting about 15 min. or so. We later took another ride from our hotel, right past the same restaurant, and realized that no trip through any neighborhood was necessary. In fact, it was a straight shot down the road from our hotel, and should only take about 5 min. Clearly the first cabbie wanted to “prove” the worth of the fare he charged by taking the scenic route.

    After that, I found myself haggling with cabbies with the thought that I didn’t want to be the chump they took advantage of.

    My husband began to get irritated with me, reminding me it was only what amounted to a dollar out of a $3-$4 fare that I ultimately ended up arguing over, which would’ve been part of their tip, anyway. My reasoning is that if they’re going to lie to me about having a broken meter, then I will not be so free to give them even a dollar more than they deserve. Funny thing is, if they were just honest, they would’ve gotten much more than that as part of their tip.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *