Taking a cab in Taichung is a relatively easy, safe and cheap way to get around. Currently, several major taxi associations exist and calling their respective hotlines will have a cab outside your door in minutes. For taxi service from almost anywhere in Taiwan, one can also call the general 55688 hotline for a pick-up.
Fares are usually based on the meter and not subject to negotiation, with the occasional exception of short distances and smaller cities/towns Keep in mind that fares automatically go up late at night and there is a holiday surcharge added to fares during the Chinese New Year period. Tips are generally not expected or given, unless you have a lot of baggage that the driver helps you load in the trunk.
Because many taxi drivers cannot speak English, it is best to carry business cards for your hotel and/or destinations, or have someone write it down for you.
If a taxi driver cheats or commits some other illegal action against a passenger, the passenger should write down a detailed description of the incident, including taxi license plate number, which should be displayed on a dash-mounted placard with the driver's photo. This information should then be reported to the Taichung Foreign Affairs Police: (04) 2327-3875.
Rates as of July 6, 2010:
Daytime (06:00 - 22:00):
Flagdrop: NT$85 for the first 1.5 km
Distance fee: NT$5 per 250 meters.
Time fee: NT$5 per three minutes (when travelling under 5 km/hour)
At Night (22:00 - 06:00)
Distance fee: NT$5 per 208 meters.
Time fee: NT$5 per 2.5 minutes (when travelling under 5 km/hour)
Details on taxi companies in various Taichung districts in this section.