We had heard a lot of bad things from friends about taxi drivers in Peru, especially about those in Lima. The internet seemed to agree, many respondents reciting their about getting overcharged, lost, to others being full-on kidnapped. Needless to say, we were a bit worried about safety when it came to taxi-taking in Peru.
However, with a few precautions, we turned out A-Okay with no incidents or discontentment. We recommend you follow the same precautionary guidelines that we took since they’re not that hard to follow and can help you stay safe.
Coming from the Lima Airport? Debating whether to take a bus or a taxi? Click here to see our recommendation.
- The first thing you should look out for is the taxi signage on top of the car. Some cabs will not have the signage which means they’re freelance drivers and haven’t been vetted. Don’t use those, there’s usually a lot of taxis so finding a legit one shouldn’t take much longer.
- The second thing you should do is use your gut feeling. If the drivers or his car looks sketchy, just don’t get on. The drivers should inspire trust and safety, if that’s not the case then move on.
- The third guideline, is used to avoid getting overcharged. Right when you enter the taxi and tell driver where you’re going and then ask him how much the ride will cost by saying, Cuantos? Generally, a 10-minute ride will cost about 10-15 soles. You should bargain if you’re a hustler.
That way upon arrival, there’s no surprise or overcharge. Prepare your money while on your way so you can quickly get going upon arrival.
- If you’re leaving from the hotel, ask reception to call you a taxi. Generally, a hotel will want to get you a reliable taxi driver as part of their service to you. This has been our experience in Peru as taxis we rode which had been called from a hotel reception came with a better car and service. Overall less sketchy than the kind of taxis we were hailing from the side of the street.
- Lock the doors when you get in your ride. While in traffic or at a red light, you’ll sometimes see people creeping around the cars. Well, sometimes these are people looking to perform a smash and grab, where the victim is assaulted and raided from their belongings.
- Don’t get flashy with your valuables. During our all our taxi rides, we kept our phones and camera inside our bags, which we stowed out of sight under our legs.