The official Madrid taxi is white with a red diagonal stripe across the front door. Using a taxi in Madrid is a comfortable and fast option compared to other means of public transport, particularly if you are in a rush and need to be somewhere in a short time.
It’s also considerably more expensive than the Metro and the bus, especially if you have a tourist transport pass or a Multi Card, two particular tickets that can save you lots of money.
How Can You Catch A Madrid Taxi?
If the taxi is free it will display a green light on the roof.
To hail a taxi all you need to do is raise your hand. Unlike other European cities, there is no need to go to a taxi rank. The free taxi will stop right were you are.
There are also many taxi ranks around the city, indicated by a blue sign with a white letter ‘T’.
The only places where you must take a taxi from the corresponding ranks are railway (Atocha and Chamartín) and bus stations (Estación Sur de Autobuses and Avenida de América), and at the airport.
What Are The Madrid Taxi Fares?
Prices are based on the official rate as fixed by Madrid City Hall and are generally updated every year (mid-December).
There is always an obligatory minimum fare of when the meter is switched on.
There are two standard rates of pay, depending on whether or not you are travelling during peak or off-peak times, and two to go to/from the airport.
- Fare 1: Monday to Friday from 6:00 to 21:00.
- Fare 2: All other days and times (weekdays from 21:00 to 6:00, weekends and holidays).
- Fare 3: Minimum airport service. It is applicable 24/7 365 days for services that originate at airport taxi stands with a maximum distance route of 9.5 km or less. After exceeding 9.5 km (or equivalent initial time), the taximeter will continue counting in the corresponding tariff, having its corresponding reflection in the tariff module.
- Fare 4: Airport fixed rate. Rate valid 24 hours a day, every day, for services with origin or destination Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas Airport and destination or origin in the interior area of the M-30.
Are There Any Specific Supplements?
Here is a complete list of the official supplements that you can pay.
- Picking up a taxi at Madrid Barajas airport.
- Journeys beginning from a taxi rank at a bus station (Estación Sur de Autobuses and Avenida de América), railway station (Atocha and Chamartín) or approach road to.
- Travelling to or from Madrid’s exhibition fair site, the Parque Ferial Juan Carlos I (also known as IFEMA).
- Journeys on Christmas Eve and New Years Eve that end between 21:00 and 06:00 (Boxing Day or New Year’s Day).
There is no supplement for pets, wheelchairs and luggage, as long as the trunk and/or roof rack of the vehicle has enough capacity.
If you wonder how much would a taxi cost to/from the airport, read more about
Or you may be interested in taking a taxi to/from the Atocha train station.
How Can You Pay For Your Madrid Taxi Ride?
Nowadays most taxis accept cards and other payment methods (e.g. Apple Pay).
If you intend to pay with cash, taxi drivers are only required to make change for 20€ bills and smaller. So make sure you have small bills!
How Can You Book A Madrid Taxi In Advance?
There is a myriad of services, websites and apps that offer this service.
But these are my favorites:
- Star Taxi Mercedes. The most professional and reliable taxi service. All their cars are Mercedes and the drivers are incredibly polite and nice. They operate under the official rate system so you won’t be charged any additional fee despite their incredibly service.
- FreeNow (available on iOS and Android). It’s the largest taxi app in Spain and it operates in Madrid, Barcelona, Seville, Valencia, Málaga and all over Asturias.
- TXMAD (available on iOS and Android). It’s the Madrid taxi official app.
What Are The Advantages Of Booking A Madrid Taxi Through An App?
If you book a taxi through an app you will pay the exact same amount as if you stop in on the street. They apply the official fares for each city.
Here are some of the advantages of using an app like FreeNow or TXMAD:
- You know you’re calling a specific taxi. So you know the name, license number and car plate of the driver who is picking you up. Therefore, it’s a much safer service.
- You avoid being scammed being charged with ridiculous supplements.
- You have a platform to file any complaints.
- You can schedule a taxi for the next day without having to make any phone calls or without relying on third parties (such as the hotel reception).
- You can pay with cash, credit card or PayPal.
How Do You Communicate With the Driver?
Many Madrid taxi drivers speak a little English, but it’s always a good idea to have a pen and paper to write down the address. There are many similar sounding streets and you could wind up across town.
A good tip is to print out small slips of paper with the name of your hotel and the address (or your apartment address) before you leave home. That way if you are not confident in speaking Spanish, you can politely hand the driver one of the slips, with a “Vamos aquí, por favor” (“We are going here, please”).
And, please, don’t forget to be polite. Say “Hola” or “Buenos días” when you get in and “Gracias, adiós” when you leave.