Mexico City has several classes of taxi. Cheapest are the cruising pink-and-white (or, being phased out, red-and-gold) street cabs, though they’re not recommended due to the risk of assaults by the driver or accomplices. If you must hail a cab off the street, check that it has actual taxi license plates: numbers are preceded with the letters A or B. Check that the number on them matches the number painted on the bodywork. Also look for the carta de identificación (called the tarjetón), a postcard-sized ID that should be displayed visibly inside the cab, and ensure that the driver matches the photo. If the cab you’ve hailed does not pass these tests, get another one.
In libre cabs (street cabs), fares are computed by taxímetro (meter), which should start at about M$9. The total cost of a 3km ride in moderate traffic – say, from the Zócalo to the Zona Rosa – should be M$30 to M$40. Between 11pm and 6am, add 20%.
Radio taxis, which come in many different colors, cost about two or three times as much as the others, but this extra cost adds an immeasurable degree of security. When you phone, the dispatcher will tell you the cab number and the type of car. If you have a smartphone or device, you can order a cab via the popular app Easy Taxi or Uber.
Reliable radio-taxi firms, available 24 hours, include the following:
App-based, taxi-like service Uber keeps growing in popularity in CDMX, to the despise of taxistas (taxi drivers) and the delight of many travelers, who prefer its comfortable vehicles, service, cashless system and often cheaper costs, especially for longer journeys such as to and from the airport. Order an Uber on your smartphone, pinpointing a pickup and destination on a map. The app records the details of every journey, driver and vehicle, making it safer than taxis. Many chilangos say they now go out at night more because of Uber.