Top Eight Cities in the World for Biking

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Cycling has seen a spike in popularity in recent years. A variety of factors play into the revitalization of bikes. Bicycles do not use gas, which is great for the environment and the wallet. It is a great way to get exercise and fresh air. In cities, you’ll probably be faster on a bike than you would be in a car because of the recent increase in traffic. Bikes are a unique vantage point of your environment. It is hard to get the authentic feel of a place from a car. There are so many reasons to love bikes, but there are some cities who bike better than others.

amsterdam cycling

Amsterdam, Netherlands has become synonymous with bicycles. They are everywhere. People are riding them all over the city. The population of bikes and people in Amsterdam are almost identical, but there are more bikes than there are people. Different bikes for different occasions.

Davis, California in the United States is the safest city in the country for cyclists. With a population under 70,000 people, it’s not a big city. They are doing something right, though, to encourage cyclists and bike safety.

budapest cycling

Budapest, Hungary is home to over 124 miles or 200 kilometers of bike lanes. Keeping cyclists safe is a great way to get people onto bikes. Designated lanes and paths in Budapest are attracting local and foreign cyclists to the beautiful city.

Paris, France should come as no surprise as a biking city. Not only is it stunning for cyclists. It is also the finishing line for the most famous bike race in the world: The Tour de France. They introduced a bike sharing program in 2007, and it has been hugely popular. Over 20,000 bikes are available for rental at 1800 stations around the city.

dublin cycling

Dublin, Ireland is a great city for bikers. The city has its own bike sharing program called dublinbikes. An annual rental subscription will not break the bank at $22. That is $22 for an entire year. It is hard to say “no” to a nice bike ride through the streets of Dublin.

Berlin, Germany has made bike safety a priority with their 559 miles or 900 kilometers of bike paths. The geography is flat making it very easy to get around without breaking a sweat. 

tokyo cycling

Tokyo, Japan is a popular biking city for locals and tourists. 14% of Tokyo’s commuters get to work by bicycle. A large amount of parking spots and bike paths are an incentive to hop on the bike to get around every day.

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil has been constructing bike lanes since 1992 and have recently started a bike sharing program. The beautiful scenery and beaches are a great place for bikers to relax or tourists to enjoy.

Cycling isn’t just for the pros. People are hopping on bikes all over the world to get around their cities. Some cities have even built reputations as bike cities. Have you tried biking around any of these cities?

Melbourne’s Newest Rideshare, RideBoom!

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There is yet another new rideshare company on the block trying to take a piece of Uber’s profits. This newest rideshare app, RideBoom, was developed in Melbourne, Australia by a taxi operator who is eager to make RideBoom everything Uber is not.

Like most Rideshare apps, you order your car through the app, watch your driver arrive, and pay via the app at the end of your trip. However, RideBoom does have a few unique features. Our favorite aspect of this app is that you can choose your ride for either immediate pick up or for the future. RideBoom’s future time bookings can be made through the app from 2 hours to 7 days in advance ensuring there is a car for those early morning rides or time-sensitive special celebrations. Also, because RideBoom allows you to pre-book through the app they also offer the option for the driver to arrive with baby/child seats so you do not have to worry about lugging your own car seat around!

Rideboom, unlike UberX, only accepts accredited, commercial hire car / van drivers and luxury taxi drivers. Also all of their drivers and vehicles are required to carry commercial insurance for all rides.

The one downside of Rideboom, is it is currently only available in Melbourne, Australia. However if you are planning a trip to Melbourne anytime soon you can still download the app and book a ride from overseas!

 

About the Author

Lilly is the marketing manager for TaxiFareFinder.com. She has a dream to travel to 100 countries during her lifetime but meanwhile is filling her time by instagramming pictures of her puppy and trying to figure out how to get an acceptance letter to Hogwarts.

Taxi Hall of Fame & Shame

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An experience in a taxi is often one of the first defining moments when you reach a new city, whether for business or fun. This experience can set the tone for the entire trip, leaving the passenger excited to explore or with a sour taste and low expectations of the city.  We decided to dig deeper into the reputations that different cities around the world have for their taxi services. Based on research conducted from various travel websites, traveler forums, and the TaxiFareFinder community, we have compiled a list of the top five cities with the best and worst reputations. This information was collected, organized, and ranked by TaxiFareFinder staff based on the following criteria points:

  • Availability: the amount of taxis on the street, available to pickup passengers
  • Cleanliness: the state of the taxi when a passenger enters; the cleanliness of the seats, windows, handles, etc.
  • Friendliness: the demeanor and attitude of the driver; willingness to chat and answer questions of the passenger
  • Knowledgeable: the ability of the driver to navigate confidently around the city without getting lost
  • Quality of Driving: the ability of the driver to operate the vehicle in a safe and comfortable manner for the passenger
  • Quality of Vehicles: the condition of the automobile serving as the taxi; up-to-date, well-taken care of vehicles
  • Safety: the overall sense of safety for passengers
  • Value: the cost of the taxi ride in relation to time and distance travelled

The Hall of Fame highlights cities with the best reputations around their taxi services, showing the top 2-3 attributes that allow the city a high ranking. The Hall of Shame highlights cities with low reputations, but with attributes shown in red to signify low ranking in these categories.  Do you agree with the TaxiFareFinder Taxi Hall of Fame & Shame?

Which Service is Cheapest?

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New types of transportation options seem to be popping up daily, each promising to be the cheapest and best way to get around your city. Rideshare services like Uber, Lyft, and Sidecar are now viable, established options in the majority of larger cities in the United States. To help you determine which rideshare service can actually be your cheapest choice, we used RideGuru to calculate the cost of a consistent 4-5 mile ride in ten major US cities. The infographic below shows the service with the lowest price for the specified distance and the top two runner-up companies. Now you can know how your chosen rideshare service compares and ranks from a price perspective.

Variable factors such as surge pricing, inclement weather, and heavy traffic are not taken into consideration in the graph below. For simplicity, traditional taxis were not included in this comparison.

 

How to Use RideShare Apps (Video)

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New to rideshares? Not sure how to sign up and call one? TaxiFareFinder created this helpful video to show you how to download the app, sign up, and start using rideshares like Uber and Lyft. Happy Traveling!

For more information on rideshares, make sure to check out our helpful Rideshare Guides. (http://www.taxifarefinder.com/rideguru)

Ridiculous Taxi Stories

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Whether your cab driver drove through Manhattan like a speed demon or tried to humor you with knock knock jokes, we have all had at least one interesting taxi story for the books. Our team at TaxiFareFinder loves to hear funny, shocking, and just downright outrageous taxi stories! One of our favorite TaxiFareFinder pages is this one here where you can submit your own taxi stories and of course read about other crazy rides. Here are some of our favorites!

 

Cabbies know it best (Submitted by Kate)

Mine isn’t a complaint at all. I was pregnant and in labor. On the way to the hospital the cabbie kept telling me to breathe. He pretty much carried me into the hospital and offered to stay with me. The next day there were a dozen roses sent to my room. I never knew his name-he signed the card “Cabbie and family”

 

Estimated Fare: Turkey Sandwich (Submitted by Ari)

I was a 15 year old science nerd stranded in San Francisco with no street smarts, applying to an accelerated program at Stanford. I was all alone without money and I’d missed my bus to the airport, and was going to miss my flight home. I’d gotten a business card from this Arab cabbie who’d driven me from the airport a couple days before, and when I called him and explained my situation he remembered me, burned rubber out to the university, and blew through several red lights to get me to my plane. Stupid me, I hadn\’t even known to give him a tip the first time he’d driven me, but the second time I didn’t even have enough money for the whole fare. All I could do was offer to give him my lunch which was a turkey sandwich from Safeway, and he accepted. That guy really helped me. I still remember his name, thank you Haji.

 

Yes, you can (Submitted by Ange)

Can I tell a positive story? I took a cab to the commuter rail, and once I got on the train, I realized I had left my BlackBerry in the cab! After calling my phone a couple times, the driver heard it and answered, asking me where he could drop it off. Instead of stealing or ignoring it, he ended up returning it to the dorm for me! I wish I knew who he was and the cab company- a truly awesome cab driver right there.

 

What a coincidence?! (Submitted By: young and dumb)

I went to chicago with some friends for our senior spring break in high school, took the train from St. Louis to ChiTown. When we got there, we caught a cab to take us to our hotel. He took us to the wrong one, which we didn’t realize until we were inside. Came outside to catch another cab got the same driver again…oh to be 17 again.

Did You Know…New York City Taxi Edition

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New York City is known for it’s iconic yellow cabs that dominate the city streets and every scenic view. Yellow taxis have become synonymous with the city and even define the nonstop hustle and bustle of the big apple. We’ve compiled notable facts, figures, and historical tidbits to celebrate the taxi-driven culture of New York City.

There are over 13,437 medallions, the right to run a yellow taxi, in New York City.

There are over 50,000 taxi drivers in New York City.

A typical driver shift is 9.5 hours.

The average number of rides per shift is 30.

The average number of miles driven in a shift is 180.

The average fare is about $6.

The average trip distance is 2.6 miles.

About 99% of all trips are less than 12 miles.

About 20% of all trips are less than 1 mile.

There are over 485,000 taxi trips made per day.

There are over 175 million taxi trips per year.

A typical taxi travels 70,000 miles per year.

Over 600,000 people ride in taxis everyday.

Over 236 million people ride in taxis every year.

The average age of a taxi vehicle is 3.3 years.

Average daily taxi usage is highest in the spring months.

Average daily taxi usage is lowest during the summer months.

Friday December 11, 2009 is the day with the most taxicabs trips between 2008 and 2013.

Taxi usage always dips significantly on major holidays.

About 90% of taxi pickups in New York City occur in Manhattan.

The average tip given to a taxi driver is 18%.

About 1% of taxi drivers in New York City are female.

Each yellow taxi goes through a rigorous inspection process 3 times per year.

Cabs have 18 different sensors, these are all reviewed during the inspection process.

Medallions can be as expensive as $1,200,000.

Over 2/3 of taxi passengers are 35 or under in age.

A cab gets its name from its predecessor, the horse-driven carriage called the cabriolet.

In 1967 all medallion taxicabs in New York City were painted yellow by order of the city.

In 1925 the first woman became a taxi driver in New York City.

There is presently a $200 penalty for taxicab drivers found using their cell phones while operating their vehicles.

TaxiFareFinder used the following resources to compile these taxicab facts and figures:

2014 Taxicab Fact Book & PBS Taxi Facts & Figures

How to Take a Rideshare

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Rideshare services like Uber, Lyft, and others are a growing trend and constantly making headlines. However, the concept of rideshare services is still new and unclear for many riders out there. TaxiFareFinder has created a basic, generic explanation of how to take advantage of these new service offerings; our walk-through of how to take a rideshare applies to all services out there, although the app details and interface may differ. Ride on!

  1. Download chosen rideshare app from the app store.
  2. Create an account. Enter your email address, phone number, and credit or debit card information. Be sure to enable location services when the option appears, as this will allow for more accurate GPS capabilities when requesting a ride.
  3. Fill in the details. Once you have completed account creation, you are ready to take your first ride. You will need to set your pickup location; an address will be auto-populated based on your GPS location but double check to make sure that it is accurate. You can input an address manually if it is incorrect. Next, you will need to choose which level of service you want. For most apps, you are able to choose different types of services based on vehicle type, size, and cost. For example, Uber offers several options including: low-cost uberX, larger-vehicle uberXL, and premium Black Car.
  4. Request your ride. Once you submit your request, a nearby driver is notified of your pickup location. A time estimate will be provided and you will be able to watch your driver arrive utilizing their GPS location. All details surrounding your driver and ride will be provided, including: driver photo, contact information, vehicle make, and license plate number.
  5. Enter your end destination. Input the address of your final destination while you wait for your ride to arrive. This will save time and provide a route ahead of time.
  6. Enjoy your ride. Locate your ride and hop in the vehicle. The GPS will provide the driver with a route, but you are able to suggest a better way if you wish to. Once you arrive at your destination, simply exit the vehicle. You do not need to pay the driver or tip; cost will be taken out of your debit or credit card automatically. Expect to receive a receipt via email with a breakdown of the ride, including fare and route explanation.
  7. Rate your experience. You will be prompted to rate your driver after each ride for most rideshare services. If you had a bad experience, you can express this using the star rating system and also by writing a note to the company. Most companies take complaints very seriously and will respond quickly to any negative feedback.

A few notes for those unfamiliar with rideshare apps.

Surge pricing is a term necessary to understand, as this could seriously hurt your wallet. At times of high demand or severe weather conditions, fares are increased to provide an incentive for more drivers to get on the road. The rideshare app will notify you of the surge when you request a ride. The total cost of your ride will be increased by a multiple or a percentage of your total fare, depending on the app. For example, Uber uses multipliers, 2.5x the normal fare, while Lyft uses percentages, 150% of your fare.  You can choose to wait out the time of high demand, when fares return to normal, non-surge pricing, or choose to pay the inflated price.

Ride Cancellations have fees associated unless completed in a defined timeframe. Although it varies from app to app, the cancellation timeframe for most rideshare services is within five minutes of requesting.  If the ride is not cancelled within this timeframe, a fee starting at $5 will be taken directly out of your account on file. However, if the driver gets lost or exceeds the original arrival timeframe, you may also cancel without repercussions.

Cash transactions should never occur when using a rideshare service. It feels strange to not leave a tip, as this has been customary with taxi rides, but never feel pressured to leave a tip. Driver compensation is factored into the fee that is withdrawn directly from your account on file.

A Beginner’s Guide to RideGuru

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Around the World in 15 Taxis

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Whether you’re halfway around the world or in your home country, getting a taxi seems like a pretty simple affair. Just walk to a rank, call up a reliable company, hail one on the street, or order a taxi and prepay through an app.

However, according to this infographic and article from The Taxi Centre, things are a little different elsewhere. Depending on where you are in the world, your simple taxi trip home could include a boat trip, short jaunt on a seaplane, or even a ride on an elephant.

To find out more info on taxi prices, etiquette, and tipping expectations, view the infographic below.