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Taxis (出租车 ''chūzūchē'' or 的士 ''dishì'', pronounced "deg-see" in Cantonese-speaking areas) are generally common, and reasonably priced. Flagfalls range from ¥5 in some cities to ¥14 in others, with a per kilometer charge around ¥2. In most situations, an ordinary trip within the city costs between ¥10 and ¥50 There is no extra charge for luggage, night fares are higher. Tips are not expected.
While it is not unheard of for drivers to cheat visitors by deliberately selecting a longer route, it is uncommon. When it does happen, the fare difference will usually be minimal. However, should you feel you have been seriously cheated on the way to your hotel, and you are staying at a mid- or high-range hotel that has a doorman, you can appeal to him and/or the desk staff for assistance: A single sharp sentence pointing out the deception may resolve the issue.
Some taxi hawkers stalk naive travelers inside or just outside the airport terminals and train stations. They try to negotiate a set price for the trip and will usually charge twice or thrice the metered fare. If you’re not familiar with the area, stick with the designated taxi areas that are outside airport terminals and insist that the driver use the meter. The fare should be plainly marked outside the taxi.
Sitting in the front passenger seat of taxis is acceptable; some taxis even mount the taxi meter down by the gearbox, where you can only see it from the front seat. Be warned that drivers may start smoking without asking by just opening their window and lighting up. In some cities it is also common for drivers to try and pick up multiple passengers if their destinations are in the same general direction. Each passenger pays full fare but it saves the time of waiting for an empty cab at rush hour.
Even in major citiesOutside of Beijing and Shanghai, it is unlikely difficult to find an English-speaking taxi driver, though Beijing and Shanghai have improved in this respectcabbie. Anywhere else it is basically impossible. If you say Saying the destination's name of your destination in [[Chinese phrasebook|Mandarin]] (, but with your native pronunciation), you may not be understood. Therefore, it is advisable to keep a have the destination written note of the name of place where you want to go to by taxi. Chinese characters are better for this than a romanized (pinyin) version, as many drivers cannot read pinyin, and the same pinyin may correspond to different characters. Get business cards for your hotel, and for restaurants you like, to show taxi drivers. Equip yourself with a sound-tracked guide to conversation in Chinese. Such tools can be easily found on the Internet in different languages.
Buy a Through your cell phone to can call , your Chinese friends who will tell can state the destination to the driver where to take you. Cellphones are inexpensive, and pay-as-you-go GSM SIM cards are readily available.
In some cities, taxi companies use a star-rating system for drivers, ranging from 0 to 5, displayed on the driver's name-plate, on the dashboard in front of the passenger seat. While no or few stars do not necessarily indicate a bad driver, many stars tend to indicate good knowledge of the city, and willingness to take you to where you ask by the shortest way. Another indicator of the driver's ability can be found on the same name-plate - the driver's ID number. A small number indicates a long on the job and, most likely, good knowledge of the city. If you feel you are being cheated, get out the car and write down the license plate number and if you speak some Chinese (or have a good phrasebook) threaten to report the driver to the city or the taxi company. Most drivers are honest and fares are reasonable, but dishonest drivers will try to use your visitors' lack of Chinese skills to their advantage.
The Chinese are assertive when seeking a taxi. The person who flags down a particular car is not necessarily entitled to that ride. Some locals move farther up in traffic to intercept cars or shove others out of the way as they try to enter a taxi. When competing with others for rides, move toward the taxi and enter it as soon as possible after flagging it down.
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