Taxi cabs are affordable. Unfortunately, you can't really flag down an official metered taxi in the street and most taxi drivers and dispatchers do not speak English. That said, mobile phone apps are common and easy to use.
These days, most people use mobile phone apps (such as Yandex Taxi) to order a cab. This solves the language barrier issue to an extent, given that you know the precise departure and destination address. If you have the app, try to make sure it's easy to park where you are, otherwise the driver will start calling you and asking questions in Russian.
You can also order an official taxi by phone or book it online, or get a Russian-speaker to do this for you. Normally, the dispatcher will ring you back within a few minutes to provide a description and licence number of the car. Most companies will send a car within 30 minutes of your call. Some reliable companies offer online scheduling.
Detskoe Taxi ‘Children’s Taxi’ has smoke-free cars and car seats for your children.
Lingo Taxi Promises English-speaking drivers (and usually delivers).
These are no longer common and best avoided, because many scammers and outright criminals gravitate towards this niche. If you have to ride one of these, negotiate the price before getting in. Expect to pay around R500 for a ride within the centre. To flag one down, just stand on the side of the road and stretch your hand out – any random car that stops is your taxi.
Don’t hesitate to wave on a car if you don’t like the look of its occupants. As a general rule, always avoid riding in cars that already have a passenger. Be particularly careful taking a taxi that is waiting outside a nightclub or bar.