Taxi fares are always negotiable! Establish flat rate which your willing to pay from point A to point B before you get in. Low ball them and usually will accept. From airport to most hotels should be no more than $8-10 bucks, from airport they try to sell you $15-20.
The cab fare from the "Hoteles" to the airport (one way) is usually 80 Mexican pesos. This is the regular price. If you pay more than this, then you are paying a lot! It is approximately 2.5 kms from the hotel to the airport. The hotels are very close. You can even walk if you wanted to.
When arriving at PVR airport you will be confronted with a room full of drivers and little carels and they will try to pressure you to take their cab. This is NOT the place to get a cab. Continue through the doors and immediately on the right you will see a single little stand where you can get a lisenced cab. The price (as of Jan 2012) to downtown (zona vieja or zona romantica) Zone 2 was $260 MXN which as $14MXN to the $1US was less than $20. GREAT deal. You don't HAVE to tip the taxis, btw, unless they provide an extra service, but it's always good karma to round it up a little.
After arriving at the PV airport we walked through the area where the timeshare sellers stood. They kept yelling "taxi?" to get you to stop. Keep on going! Go to the taxi stands and try to negotiate your price to the hotels. We stayed at the Garza Blanca and it was posted $310 pesos ($31.00 US). We paid it and later learned to negotiate the price. The price coming back to the airport was $130 pesos ($13.00 us) The taxi ride from the Malecon to the hotel (or vice versa) was usually 80 pesos ($8.00 us). If you don't like to haggle, expect to pay more!
There is not much to say about the Taxis in PV except they are very easily accessable. From the hotels you will be paying about 2 USD more, but that is not a big deal! The taxi drivers are well spoken if you dont speak English and you can bargin with them a bit. They know the area very well and drive like they wish to be in the Indy 500! I actually gave one of the drivers a 2 dollar tip because he was able to drive crazier than my wife!!! Swerving around cars and doing about 70 on narrow streets made for a great adventure! Just haggle about 20% of what they want and you will be good-- they are everywhere so dont be afraid to walk a little to find a better price.
Before you even get into a taxi state your price. Don't let them tell you that it is more for more people (unless a van taxi). They have city set rates, but they will try & get you for a few bucks more. Your hotel should have the set rates at the front desk or with the bellhops.
The taxis are SMALL due to shallow streets. max of 4 guests per car.
Taxis are also more leaving the airport, but there are more than one company. Pit them against themselves & get the best offer. We paid 6 dollars less than anyone else in our taxi van.
Our friend booked airport/hotel transfers through costco. He paid $21.00 USD each way to/from Hotel Zone. I am not sure how much it would have been without the reservations, however cab fares to other locations were MUCH cheaper. The cab ride was approximately 10-15 minutes to the airport. When we got a cab for our canopy excursion we paid approximately $6-7 USD one way. this drive was twice as long as the ride to the airport.
Also, from hotel zone to downtown we paid 40 pesos ($4USD) each way.
We have long journeyed over the walking bridge across from the airport to avoid the added "airport" charge on top of our fare. BUT the taxi drivers have decided to rip-off the unaware. The published zone fee from this spot to Vallarta Centro and less to the "hotel zone" should be about 80 pesos.
These drivers are trying to charge the unaware 150 to 200 pesos. Don't go for it. Just go back across the bridge and pay the same LEGALLY! If enough of us don't pay the rip-off fee they will go back to a fair and legal fee.
HERE'S A HINT TO SAVE SOME MONEY RIGHT OFF THE PLANE. DO NOT USE THE TAXI DRIVERS OUTSIDE THE EXIT DOOR. GO THROUGH THE EXIT THEN MAKE A LEFT GO OVER THE FOOT BRIDGE TO OTHER SIDE OF THE STREET AND GET YOURSELF A DRIVER THERE. MUCH CHEAPER.
Taxis are abundant all over the Puerto Vallarta area. They are mostly late model Toyota Corolla's and such. They are generally not air conditioned.
I was staying at the Sheraton Buganvilea. I believe fare from the airport to the Sheraton was 80 pesos, or a little less than 8USD. I also took one from town one night, and I believe it was like 20 or 30 pesos from the Malecon area.
The drivers take great pride in their cars and when they are not hauling people around you will often see them washing and shining up their taxis.
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