The old school method to flag down a taxi is to stick your hand out into the street. However, in Russia, you must be very careful, because most probably, you could stop a car with no any taxi signs. In that kind of cars you would face two types of drivers. The first one is the driver who could gladly give you a ride for a cheap price or even for free, because he is going in the same way. The second type is the driver who might work in illegal taxi. He will try to take advantage of you, especially if he sees that you are a foreigner. In this case, the tariff for you might be 3-4 times higher than in an official taxi.
Remember, lifting your hand and catching a car on the street is always a big risk to end up with empty pockets. To avoid that kind of situations, use only official cabs. These taxis are usually yellow, sometimes they have different colors but there are always visible signs that say TAXI.
However, if you are brave and have luck stopping a car, there is always a problem with the language barrier. We recommend to learn some Russian basic phrases and surviving words to be able to communicate with the taxi driver. It's also important to know Russian numbers to discuss about the money.
Best websites to order taxi
There are many Russian companies to reserve a taxi on the Internet. Usually these websites are in Russian.
For your convenience, we selected the most popular websites which have English version and an easy interface.
Mobile apps to get taxi
These days, most people in Russia use mobile apps to order a taxi or airport transfer. It's quite easy, safe and cheap.
We are going to look closer to the most popular applications for your mobile device.
1. Uber in Russia
Since January 2019, the regular Uber app is not functioning in Russia (neither in Belarus, Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan) If you want to use Uber in Russia, you have to download an app "Uber Russia". (The app has an English version)
The good news is that you can use a bank card of your country as the payment method. The money in your bank account will automatically convert into Russian currency (rubles).
|High level service||In some cases, waiting might be a bother|
|Cash and Non-cash Payments||Sometimes you are not able to pick the car type you like|
|Many tariff options||Separated app|
2. Yandex taxi
It is very similar to Uber. The drivers of Yandex Taxi make more than 500 000 rides every day in Russia (Uber has around 160 000) The advantage is that Yandex taxi has more cars than Uber, so the waiting time will be less.
In Moscow, the average ride cost of Yandex taxi and Uber is around 400 rubles (6.36 USD). This is the cost for the most Economy cars. Of course if you want to get a high level car, Yandex Taxi has a lot of options from BMW series 3 to Mercedes Maybach.
Yandex Taxi is available for iOS and Android. It is very easy to use and it has English version.
|Fast pick up||Pre-calculated ride cost could be different from the final cost (In some cases the difference is huge)|
|Cash and Non-cash Payments||The driver can wait for you only 2 mins. Then, you must pay according to the tariff|
|Many tariff options||The drivers may not speak Russian, neither English|
Gett taxi is the third app by popularity. It is copying Yandex taxi and Uber. However, in 2012 the app got "Russian Internet Award" (Пре́мия Руне́та) as the most progressive app to get a taxi.
|Fast pickup (5-7 mins for Moscow and St. Petersburg)||In some cases unqualified drivers|
|Stable tariffs (Do not increase in rush hour)||It might not accept your bank card|
|Many tariff options|
If you are a person who prefers the highest level of comfort this app is for you. Wheely provides the ultimate in premium service. You will get a luxury German sedan with no any taxi signs.
The car will be driven by a smartly dressed chauffeur. He will make sure that your ride is comfortable. Also, he will hold the door open for you, set the climate control to the temperature you prefer, and tune the radio to your favourite station.
The ride prices will pleasantly surprise you. Russia is a unique country, because only in Moscow you can get a Mercedes with a personal chauffeur, and go from the airport to your hotel for around 60 USD.
Also, there are airport transfer options. For example, these are the transfer prices for Mercedes Benz E class
Check all the tariffs on Wheely.com
|Premium service||High prices|
|Only luxury cars||Only Non-cash Payments (Bank cards, Apple Pay)|
|Many tariff options|
|All drivers speak English|
|High qualified drivers|
5. Uber SSR
If you are just bored of all the services above, try new UBER SSR!
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