Travels

The city with the most taxis in the world

Sharing a taxi in Uzbekistan

Mashrutka in Tashkent

City bus in Tashkent

In fact, the stops have banks, good shade and usually have a small shop It offers refreshing drinks, chocolates, chips and that multitude of things that we usually want when we have to entertain a wait, and in the battle to fight boredom the spoiled stomach wins the battle.

In the case of taxis, and I don't mean the few perfectly registered and inspected, the stops are everywhere, like the taxis themselves. Any corner of any avenue can be the place where one, two or three people are placed to wait. And your means of transport can be any vehicle that stops, you just have to negotiate the destination and the price before getting on it.

If you do not speak Uzbek or Russian, it is advisable to memorize - or, better yet, carry targeted in any of those languages - the name of the street or the specific address we want to go to. Patience, mimicry, smiles and nothing in a hurry will help you make yourself understood although they are not a guarantee of getting a good price.

It is not necessary to fight with the man behind the wheel if there is no way to reach an agreement on the cost of the trip. If the taxi driver is not worth the race, he will continue his way and the possible passenger waits, no more than a few seconds, for the next car to stop and repeat the negotiating operation.

Any car can be a taxi

Just like a taxi is any car, the western norm of exclusivity is also broken. The car that takes you because the price or the area to which you are going is convenient for the driver, you can also stop along the road and pick up - after the mandatory negotiation, shorter in the case of the premises - more passengers with whom you will share the journey.

Reviewing my notes, in September 2011 my expenses in taxi trips around the city ranged between 2000 and 4000 soms. The most usual price was 3000 soms for journeys from or to the center; I paid the 4000 soms to go from Gafur Gulyam to the train station and, since I was in a hurry, I did not negotiate too much although it was a fairly fair price.

An exception to prices is transport from Tashkent Airport. With official taxis, parked outside the terminal but with drivers waiting for you as soon as you leave Immigration / Customs, they will ask you what they want. The most common is to agree 10 USD, but if you continue straight ahead and pass the parking lot, to the right of the bus stop it is more than likely that you will find a row of cars.

They are illegal taxi drivers with whom it is possible to negotiate a better price, from 3 to 4 USD per way, and so you can save the dollars you can spend on your first dinner in Uzbekistan.

Photos | Avistu