Home FAQ Amsterdam: Uber or Taxi? Are you Sure of an Answer?

Amsterdam: Uber or Taxi? Are you Sure of an Answer?

by Micaela Zaslabsky

One of the first questions you come up with when traveling to a new country is how to get from the airport to your hotel or Airbnb. One of the best solutions when arriving late at night or very early in the morning is to take a taxi. But, what is it better, uber or taking a taxi?

There are advantages and disadvantages of both taxis and Ubers in Amsterdam. On the one hand, Uber allows you to know beforehand how much you will spend and who is picking you up. One the other hand, taking a taxi means it is probably cheaper and you can take it on the spot.

Amsterdam is not the biggest city in the world, yet it is very good to consider taking a taxi or uber if it is raining outside, if you are going far away or you are not staying in the center of the city, etc. It is also a good option to consider in case you are taking a late or early flight, which tend to be way cheaper than a flight at a convenient time to go by train or bus to the airport.

Uber or Taxi: What is better?

Both taxis and Uber are very popular in Amsterdam. For those of you who didn’t know, not so long ago I wrote an article about Uber in Amsterdam. Yes!! Amsterdam, like the biggest European cities, has Uber.

The biggest question is, what should I go for, Uber or taxi? Well, this depends a lot on your personal preference and the circumstance you are in. In general, both taxis and Uber are controlled and safe, something properly regulated by the Government and not only by the private companies. Using one service or the other may depend on: when you want the car, what time of the day it is, what type of car you want or need, how many people there are, method of payment, speaking your language, etc.

Uber or Taxi: Book in Advance

Taxi. If you want to book your taxi in advance, either before your arrival to be waiting for you or for your departure to bring you to the airport, or for whatever restaurant booking that you have to be on time for, calling a taxi is always better.

If you contact your hotel or a taxi company, they will always have a car waiting for you at the time you want them to be. It is something very practical, everybody speaks English no matter what and if you don’t like the car or it is too small the company can always send another one.

The disadvantage of using Uber for this is the fact that you can only use Uber to go on the location your phone is indicating them. Say that you haven’t arrived in Amsterdam yet, well, you are not allowed to open the app in the setting Amsterdam and check the availability, prices or types of cars.

Uber or Taxi: Time of the Day

As silly as this can be, the time of the day when you need the car is key to know which one is the best choice to make. It can be as easy as the fact that there are no taxis around you because they are all booked and you can’t find them when you are at the airport or in the center of Amsterdam.

In this case, Uber is a good option to go for because you can book it or at least see when one of the cars is available, how long it is going to take to go where you are and from there to your destination.

In the case of the date you are traveling, you have to consider the big demand of both of them during public holidays, high season in the month of July and August and of course weather conditions such as showers and snow, among others.

Uber or Taxi: Amount of Passengers

This is an obvious one, isn’t it? What do you do if you a car for 8 people instead of 4? Well, both Uber and taxis are good options.

In the case of Uber, Amsterdam counts with many different types of Uber:  the most interesting one is Ubervan, some sort of larger minivans for more people if you need it, besides also offering UberX (slightly cheaper Uber) and Uber Black (more expensive VIP taxi sedans). Besides, with Uber, you can always choose whatever car you want and you know how many seats there are, luggage space and so on.

In the case of the taxi, you may be lucky and find in the middle of the streets a minivan for you and your people, yet the easiest way is to contact the taxi agency by phone. This way you will be able to explain if you need more luggage space, how many seats, where you are going, etc. The easiest way of contacting them it is to ask at the hotel or hostel you are at and ask for their recommended one.

In general, if you are worried I will tell you that all taxis in Amsterdam are completely controlled. They have a different license plate, they never work on their own and they always belong to a company that established prices and standards beforehand, which means you won’t really have to worry about that aspect.

Uber or Taxi: Method of Payment

This is another very important thing to consider: it depends. For those of you who are used to Uber and how it works, it is obvious that having the app on your phone connected to your bank account or Paypal you will have easy access without having to pay directly to the driver. This is a big advantage if you come from a country with a different currency because you won’t have to exchange currency or be worried about how much cash you still have or how much your bank makes you pay every time you use your card with a different currency.

In the case of Taxi, most Amsterdammers will prefer paying by car absolutely anything, but that is an advantage for you because either if you want to pay with cash, debit card or credit card, you will have to choose. Most cars have all the payment options and if you call a taxi on the phone you can tell them beforehand what type of payment method you prefer. Easy, right?

Uber or Taxi: English

In general, everybody speaks English, if not perfectly well at least good enough to understand directions and easy explanations. If you are not comfortable speaking English, I guess the best option you can go for is Uber because you will be able to download the app on your phone in whatever language you prefer and from there just introduce your destination and all the basic information that you need.

If you have no problem just giving directions and explaining an address or a name to the driver in English but you are worried about Dutch, don’t worry. Not only taxi drivers are more than used to tourists but also have basic knowledge of English and other languages, so you may be lucky.

Uber or Taxi: Prices

Oh well, this is a tricky one. I have used Uber a lot with my boyfriend to go from my place to his and it has cost from 28 to 48 euros depending on the demand for cars.

In case you didn’t know, the prices of Uber change a lot depending on the availability, demand, time of the day and so on. This means that you will have to check every time how much it will actually cost. The upside of all this is that you know beforehand how much you have to pay, which is definitely a big advantage and a dealbreaker to make the decision of calling the car or not. It also means you will feel safer and more comfortable in a foreign country where you have to be careful about scams and other issues.

In the case of taxis, it really depends. The taxi company that worked with us at the hotel I used to work for, would offer people a ride to the airport for less than 50 euros. But from the airport to the hotel people would have paid 80 or 90 euros taking a random taxi from the airport.

I guess the best tip I can give you, in this case, it would be to always establish a price to pay to the taxi driver before jumping into the car and if you have the chance, compare it to the current rate in Uber.

To Sum Up…

Getting an Uber or a Taxi depends a lot on your needs, your preferences and so on. Both are good, safe and controlled services and each has different advantages. The good news of all this is that in Amsterdam you have the option to choose which one suits you best!

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