I'm a local and i can tell you i just hate the taxis. I take a taxi only in great need. I recommend you to do the same. Not that all taxi drivers are bad, but it's the most probable tourist trap in the city.
Unique Suggestions: If you think that a taxi driver charged you more than he should, write down his plates' number and try this number : 171. It's the tourist police.
Fun Alternatives: Take a good city map and the impressively upgraded transportation system of the city can subsitute the taxis perfectly.
Take care about fares, is very common that someones want more money than the taxi counter says, and normally the drivers have a very bad mood, like if they be angry all the time.
Unique Suggestions: I know it is very difficult to find, but if you can get a taxi with a woman driving this is the best option. Women are more gentle, honests, and safest drivers.
Fun Alternatives: Now in Athens the new metro net is the best option, but you can choose the bus net to get the airport. Cheapest, and without troubles with the drivers!
I learned the hard way on this. But if you are coming in from a fery into Pireaus, do not pay more that 10 euro for a trip to Athens. I ended up paying 30 and my Hotel told be I got ripped. There are plenty of taxis waiting, so dont take one until they tell you they will do it for 10 euros.
Fun Alternatives: Take the Metro. We got in at 2am, and the Metro closes at 1am. So we had to take a taxi. The metro will cost you about 1.60 euros and is about a 15 minute ride. Do this also for the airport.
Ok...here is the deal, most taxi drivers are honest...Unfortunately a few of them spoil the name of the rest.
So before you take a cab here are a few tips...
1) Taxis from Athens International Airport are expensive because of the fact that airport is about 30 km away from Athens. You should expect to pay between 30 and 50 Euros.
2) Always be aware of the taxi meter. NEVER accept to go anywhere without the taxi meter on.
3) Somewhere at the taxi meter there should be an indication say: Tariff. This should be 1 during the day and 2 after midnight up to 5 in the morning. Double tariff means more money. You may also pay double tariff when you are travelling outside Athens boundaries even during the day.
4) Additional charges may apply if you have lots of luggages or you are travelling to ports or if you have called a cab at the phone or you have an appointment at a specific date/hour.
Bear in mind that taxis in Athens and in Greece in general are cheaper than to most western european countries. so if NEVER pay hundreds of euros unless you are travelling a few hundred kilometres away by taxi!!!
Unique Suggestions: It would be good to ask a local how much you are expected to pay to go from one place to another.
Fun Alternatives: There are plenty of other choices. You may use the metro that it is cheap or buses. I believe that metro is the best alternative from Athens airport to the center of Athens to the port of Piraeus as it is much cheaper.
Taxi drivers in Athens are basically hustlers. They will try to
rush you into the vehicle then make small talk so you think
they are being nice, then rip you off when you arrive. My
best advice is to ALWAYS agree on a price BEFORE you get
into the car!!! Even if there is a sign posted (as there is in
Pireaus) with prices...they will try to tell you any excuse to
add more...traffic, etc. If they try to argue with you, stand
firm on the agreed price. If they persist, get out a piece of
paper and write down their cab # and license plate # then
threaten to call the authorities. He will then jump into his
car and drive away! ps--they don't do this to other Greeks.
Fun Alternatives: The new metro is awesome. The bus system is very good. If you absolutely
have to take a cab, agree on the price first! If going to Pireaus from the
airport do not pay more than 30 Euros. By European standards Greek
Taxis are still cheap, but be careful!
To put it bluntly they are ba#%$^%&'s
Rude, over bearing, arrogant, and out to prise every cent out of you they can.
Unique Suggestions: I found it best by far to NOT ask a price or bargin, but just to get in and get the meter going. FAR CHEAPER
I think that it will be unfair to say that all taxi drivers in Athens try to rip every tourist they see but I have to admit that I have heard hundreds of stories from people about it. Always ask for receipt or if you think that the total fare is too high don’t pay him, take his plate number or call the tourist police (num: 171-- 210 6977386)
There are a dozens of Taxis waiting to take you into Athens..and all at an unbelievably big cost. If you just walk past them and head off like you intend to walk (which you probably never would do!) at least three of them will come up to you with a much lower fare. All five of us rode into Athens for what was the surcharge per person on other fares!
Unique Suggestions: The alternative is taking the metro. It was great. It is a few blocks from port and the people on the train were delightful. We did not figure out metro until after we got to Athens. You come out of cruise port, take a left on main bridge and follow signs. keep walking it will show up on the right!
My party of 8 and myself arrived in Syntagma Square late at night but before midnight, and despite knowing the city centre pretty well got ripped off in the following way. We needed 2 taxis and the fare quoted seemed reasonable as we didn't know the location of our hotel. It seemed to take us ages and we felt we had travelled miles!!!l We paid the fare despite the 2 taxis charging us different prices. The next day I realised where we actually were. We had travelled from Syntagma to our hotel a distance of about 2kilometres. The previous night it took us at least 30 minutes of driving to get to the same place. Be warned and do your research. I thought I had Paul B
unless you like long rides dont worry bout this trap...
taxi drivers try to squeeze every penny out of you.... they like to drive around in circles and give their customers tours around athens.
Unique Suggestions: if you have to get a taxi make sure you know exactly where you're going, theres alot of us that would like to help you so just ask around... we may even suggest you another alternative instead of a taxi if its possible!
Fun Alternatives: if you're in syndagma and say you want to go to the beach there are at least 5 to 8 buses that do so!
the tram starts from syndagma and ends in glyfada... its 45mins but its not a bad ride, its new and comfy!
theres the metro line thats connected with the train and the tram, buses with unlimited routes.
Most of the times you will have an honest driver when you hail a taxi in Athens. However, there are some taxi-cowboys that will take advantage of tourists not knowing their way around. They will overcharge you, take on other passengers while driving you or take you to an hotel they get a commission from. You want to play it safe? Ask a few taxi drivers how much your ride is going to cost first so you will know the normal price, then get a taxi that charges that price. You want to pay for your drive, not buy the car....
According to the Greek Legislation, taxi drivers should provide upon request a receipt for the amount paid for transportation services. The receipt should also indicate the taxi registration number and the driver's name.
Unique Suggestions: If you do get overcharged or other passengers are taken on board, don't start a fight but report the taxi number or the licence plate to the Tourist police or to the Tourist information office. They will deal with the cowboy.
Fun Alternatives: The excellent Athens metro system or one of the many busses will bring you to or very close to almost any interesting place in town and they are much cheaper than a taxi. On arrival at Athens airport, take bus E95 that will take you straight to Syntagma Square for 2,90 Euro. From there you can get the metro or a bus to bring you close to your hotel. Just send me an e-mail if you want a map of Athens or a metro map. I'll be happy to send it to you be e-mail.
Once at the airport, If you take a taxi to your hotel please note that cabbies have been known to take advantage of unsuspecting tourists and overcharge them! (Hard to believe huh) :)
However you can minimize the damage by doing the following:
Make sure that the cab driver turns his meter on as soon as you get in! Do not make 'a deal' with the taxi driver. The cab fare is not negotiable and any agreement you might make with him is going to be to your disadvantage.And he will try hard to give you a 'good' deal!
Look at the meter and make sure that it is running at the normal speed. You can determine this by looking for the number '1' or the number '2' in the meter's face. If you see the number 1 then it is correct. If you see the number 2 then it is running at double the normal rate. (The double rate is only applied when you use a cab after midnight or if you take the cab for a trip outside of Athens city limits).
If a diagreement should take place, insist on your right to call in the tourist police! That usually resolves the problem!
Look, while there's almost no way of avoiding this, it's good to know. If you are a tourist, taxi drivers will almost always do the famous thing of taking "the long way" to any destination.
Unique Suggestions: A good thing to do, is ask a Greek person if you konw one how much it should generally be to get somewhere. And then the second you sit in the cab, just say "we will not pay you more than 5 euros to go here" or something. He might just ask you to get out of the cab, but it might work.
Fun Alternatives: Take the bus and metro as much as possible, it's a fixed priced, maybe not as quick but at least you know you're not being ripped off.
My name is John and I am professional taxi driver and owner of a taxi in Athens from almost 23 years.My father was the owner of the taxi from 1971 and when he retired I was start to working in his cub.They are not all the taxi drivers as they describe the most of the writers in the tips.We are about 5-6 professional drivers with their own websites and we try to keep our services in a high standards so if the tourists they want something reliable and with a good service,with a luxury Mercedes taxis it is worth to pay 10 Euros extra for a transfer from the Airport to the city of Athens compare to a regular taxi.They are also many other drivers who they working in the roads honest and they try to live their families working at least 12-14 hours a day.Why the writers they would not say about the pick pockets who they are in the metro and in all the other public transportation?Why the writers they would not say how many of the tourists they lost their money and their passports and they have to waiting without to do anything to get a new passports from their embassies? How many of these tourists they have a bad experience to lose everything and also to lose their vacations waiting for a new passport or try to make phone calls to cancel their credit cards.I would like the writers to be more honest and describe the truth about the public transportation in Greece.In Greece they have an expression who says "the fingers of the hand they are not all of them the same"so this expression can make you to think what this meaning.They are a very small number of a taxi drivers who they try to cheat the tourists so try to avoid them or tell them you will call to the Police.It will be better for you to use reliable companies and taxi drivers in Athens for your transportation.Also our Taxi Owners Union(SATA) if you report a driver they will punish him and they can get his taxi licences so he can not work from 1-6 months.
P.S If there are any questions I will be happy to answer them.
My e-mail address is email@example.com
Not all taxi drivers are ruthless and dishonest, but unfortunately there are those that smear the names of the rest of them. I had this unfortunate incident using a taxi from Pireous to my hotel after arriving by ferry from Rhodos. Most beautiful taxi driver and pleasant to talk to , but my oh my overcharged me deluxe.