I’ve had too many bad experiences taking taxis to JFK.
Here’s the scoop for Manhattan. Any trip between JFK and Manhattan (whether to or from) is a flat fee of $45 (as of 8/18/2009; latest info here: Taxi pricing). The only extra is tolls for bridges but if you take Queensboro Bridge, there is no toll although that might not be the best one depending on where you are going.
Most common scams:
- Not setting the fixed fee on the meter and then giving you a hard time when you want to use a credit card at the end of the ride
- Saying there is a surcharge for you if you use a credit card
- Avoid the trouble and use a car service which is only a few bucks more: Carmel #1 Car and Limousine Service in America – Best Service for the Lowest Price
- If you use a taxi, tell them up front that you are using a credit card and they should set the flat fee
- Call 311 and get help from the taxi hotline
During my last trip, once again, the driver didn’t turn on the flat fee and drove without the meter. It has happened to me before, and I just tell them at the end that I’m using a card. This time though, at the end, he insisted that there was a surcharge for using the card. I fly once a month. I know how it works, but I guess he thought I was some tourist. Infuriating. He wasted my time, but I called his bluff and dialed 311. I got the person to tell them what we all already knew. Flat fee of $45 plus tolls and that’s it.
There are honest taxi drivers, but I have seen some pretty dishonest drivers as well. Aside from airport runs, sometimes you may want to whip out your GPS for you iPhone or GPS enabled folks to make sure you’re not taken for a ride. Use technology to your advantage. For airport runs though, it is a flat fee so don’t worry too much about that.