To & From the Airport
There are two access routes to El Alto International Airport: the autopista toll road (B$3), and the sinuous free route, which leads into Plaza Ballivián in El Alto.
Minibus 212 runs frequently between Plaza Isabel la Católica and the airport between around 7am and 8pm (B$3.80). Look for the sign that says 'Minibus Cotranstur' just outside arrivals. Heading into town from the airport, this service will drop you anywhere along El Prado.
Radio taxis (up to four passengers, around B$70) will pick you up at your door; confirm the price with the dispatcher, or ask the driver to verify it. For a fifth person, there is an additional B$10 charge.
Car & Motorcycle
Driving the steep, winding, frenetic one-way streets of La Paz may be intimidating for the uninitiated, but for longer day trips into the immediate hinterlands, you could consider renting a car (per day US$50 to US$100), but hiring a driver is probably easier and just as economical.
Micro & Minibus
La Paz’s sputtering and smoke-spewing micros, the older three-quarter-sized buses, charge about B$2 per trip. Minibuses service most places as well, for a slightly higher cost. In addition to a route number or letter, micros plainly display their destination and route on a signboard posted in the front window. Minibuses usually have a young tout screaming the stops. Wave to catch the bus. They stop at signed paradas (official stops), or, if the cops aren’t watching, whenever you wave them down.
Trufis are shared cars or minibuses that ply set routes. Destinations are identified on placards on the roof or windscreen. They charge approximately B$3 around town and B$4 to Zona Sur.
Radio taxis (with roof bubbles advertising their telephone numbers) are recommended. Charges are a little higher after 11pm. Normal taxi services (with just a taxi sign, no phone number and no bubble) are best avoided as they've been used in the past for (rare) express kidnappings.
Ask your hotel or restaurant to ring for a taxi. Otherwise, taxis can be waved down anywhere, except near intersections or in areas cordoned off by the police. Always confirm the fare before you leave.
A newer solution to safe taxis is to use the Easy Taxi app (www.easytaxi.com/bo, in Spanish). Uber (www.uber.com) is also available now in La Paz, and you can review the driver's rating before booking a ride.