How to Hail Taxis Around the World

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If your line of business requires frequent globetrotting, you’ll know that things you take for granted in your home country can become a bit of a sticky situation when you hop across the pond. Tipping, greeting conventions, table manners, you name it - every country has its peculiarities, and it pays to be prepared before you touch down.

When it comes to getting from A to B in a foreign destination, knowing how to catch a cab will stand you in good stead - especially if you’re making your way from one important business engagement to the next with an extremely slight margin for error where timeous arrival is concerned. After all, tardiness is one thing that is universally unacceptable in the business world.

We did a bit of research to find out what the acceptable taxi hailing practice is six major cities around the world. Here is what we found:

Sydney, Australia

Sydney is one of those cities in which you can simply stand on the side of the street and put up your arm to hail a taxi. Pretty straightforward. Alternatively, you can also seek out one of the conveniently located taxi ranks around the city and go straight to the source.

New York, USA

In the Big Apple, you follow the lights. In particular, the ones on top of the iconic yellow cabs that indicate its availability. If the centre light is on, it means it is probably up for grabs. No lights? Already occupied. All lights blazing? The driver is heading home for the day/night.

Istanbul, Turkey

Istanbul also has yellow taxis, but not all are created equal. Check that the taxi you flag down has a meter to ensure that you are charged a fair fare. Also be ready to pay cash and carry exact change.

London, England

London makes it super easy for travellers. If a black cab has its light on, it's available. If the light is off, it's not. Easy as that! You will also find that London cab drivers know every nook and cranny of the city, since they are required to pass an extensive geography to earn their license.

Paris, France

Want to enjoy a safe, reliable journey in Paris? Get a legitimate taxi by looking out for a Taxi Parisien roof sign and a working meter.

Tokyo, Japan

On the one hand, Tokyo's green cabs are easy to spot. On the other hand, their available/occupied signals can be a little confusing for Western travellers. Here, a green light means 'occupied', while a red light means 'available'. Also, it helps to have your address and destination written down in Japanese in case your driver does not speak English. The concierge at your hotel should be able to assist in this regard.

Don’t have the time to worry about with transport arrangements when you reach your destination? Our professional team of corporate travel consultants are here to take on that burden, and leave you free to do what you do best. Get in touch to find out more about our services and how we can streamline your journey from start to finish, so you can go about the business of doing business.

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