Around Cusco by Taxi, Cusco
Taxis: Pay no more than s/. 3 for a taxi ride in the city. s/. 2.5o is the actual rate. Newer, larger cars may try to charge more. It’s difficult to pay the actual rate from the airport. You should walk outside the gate at the airport, away from the “tourist taxis” and pay s/. 4-5. ALWAYS agree to the price BEFORE you get in. They say not to get into cars without the yellow/black check patch on the side. The Ticas, small hatchback, are becoming more obsolete and the newer, larger, cars may not always have this symbol. I would advise not getting into any car that doesn’t have a taxi sign or black/yellow symbol.
Cusco is a small compact city and great for walking. When you are tired, fortunately taxis are plentiful and operate on a fixed fee basis. 2 soles for anywhere in the inner city and 5 soles for beyond. It's simple, cheap and you don't have to worry about being ripped off.
While in Urubamba, we established a relationship with a taxi driver who drove us around the Urubamba Valley. Not only did we have someone who we could trust to drive us around, it allowed us to get tours of the valley from the perspective of a local. Not only did he give us a standard "tour" that one would expect from tour guides, he also discussed his family's experiences living there. Ask around from the places you stay, if you trust them, and have them recommend a taxi driver for you. If you stay in Las Chullpas in Urubamba (which I highly recommend) ask them to put you in contact with one of their friends.
In Cuzco, anything goes. On this picture, the custumer is sitting in the front, with her baby behind her back and no seatbelt. The taxi drivers are driving like maniacs, and if they are given the opportunity, they will try to sell you a private tour!!! Don't say yes for anything!!! Of note, to get to your hotel, you can pay as high as 15 soles, and on the way back the hotel stewardess told me "pay no more than 5"!!!
Careful with whom will drive you to destination!
Taxis are plentiful and reliable in Cusco . The drivers are so frinedly . We had one driver wait while we ran in to buy our train ticket to Puno . He waited at least an hour . ( no meter running either)!!
When you arrive by plane there are lots of taxis at the airport, we had arranged for our hotel to send a cab for us. There is really no need to do that though.
After awhile I realized that many Peruvians would pile into a cab instead of taking the bus on common trips such as Cusco to Urubamba. The cab would only end up costing a little bit more, and you would arrive SO MUCH FASTER.
Always carry exact change. Taxi's to most areas around cusco is only a couple of Soles or more.
However whenever you break a 10 Sole note. The taxi drivers all miracelously don't have change.
So make sure that you have exact change before you jump into a cab. Also pre-negotiate your cab fare.
Most times I found they were fair in what they demanded but a couple of times I had some cab drivers who were trying to take me for a ride.
As is the case elsewhere in Peru, taxi rates are always negotiable. We'd read to only take the "official" blue taxis in Cusco - but after exiting the airport and turning down an offer of 10 soles ($3) for a ride to our hotel, we found the official taxis were actually white, and charged more - $5, which we bargained down to $4. The official taxi drivers have badges around their necks and drive newer, bigger cars.
The taxi that we hired to take us through the Sacred Valley to Ollantaytambo was definitely not official, but was recommended by the receptionist at the hotel. For 120 soles (about $40) we were driven to all the major sites that we pointed out on our map. Our driver, Eloy, did not speak English, however.
Coming back to Cusco, we paid about 5 soles from the train station to our hotel, and then close to the same amount the next morning from the hotel back to the airport.
If you just want to visit the Cusco sites, it is sensless to take a car, a taxi or even a bike...the best way is to use the you own legs!
But if you want to visit all the arrea around Cusco, the easiest way is to take a taxi for the whole day, or better, take a taxi for a couple of days and organize all the tour with the taxi driver ...for details check my tip (must see activity)
Taxi are quiet cheap, moreover if you share the cost!
A bit like Naples and Paris,drivers just doing want they want and going where they want to go !!!!
Lots of these taxis milling around,we did hear some horror stories about people getting ripped off.But nothing like that happened to us.
Don´t pay more than 2-3 soles if you move inside the city. Maximun prize 5 soles from the bus station to the city center.
Prices in 2007.