Taxi Etiquette - Some Basics

18/04/2017 10:32:00 AM

Etiquette rules apply to almost any social norm you can think of, yet they may differ all over the world. There are even etiquette guidelines that apply when you book a taxi in Sydney or elsewhere in Australia.

In Australia, the norm for taxi driver shift changes is 3pm and 3am – at these times it can be difficult to hail a taxi on the street. It is much wiser to book a taxi in advance – ideally using the ingogo taxi booking app. You can book up to 48 hours in advance of your ride, track your driver, and contact them directly if necessary.


Most taxis in Australia use a meter – there is also a flag fall fee applied. Tolls are added on top of the fare as well as a credit card surcharge making the whole trip cost very difficult to calculate. Some drivers will even attempt to pre-negotiate a fare prior to accepting the trip. None of these is ideal.

ingogo is very proud to offer a Fixed Fare fee structure. Taxi fares are finalised prior to trip being booked through the ingogo app or website, and there are no negotiations, hidden or surprise fees, no surge pricing or exchanges of cash at the end of the ride. It is the best and most convenient option for travellers, and for drivers, the benefit is that they can better compete with services such as Uber – while offering the most superior and safe taxi service available in any Australian capital city.

Front or Back?

Do you sit in the front or the back of a taxi if you’re travelling alone? Is it more respectful to the driver to sit in the front? Or is it preferred to sit in the back? This is an interesting question. Men as a general rule prefer to sit beside their driver in Australia (yet in the US, for example, riders are expected in most cities to sit in the back).

Many young women are taught by their peers and parents to always sit in the back seat of a taxi if they are travelling alone, as a safety precaution.

With ingogo, your taxi driver is not only state registered and logged into our system, the taxi has an internal security system for your safety and security as well as that of the driver. Ultimately, the choice of where to sit is up to you and what you are most comfortable with.

Cab-driver NO BADGE


Tipping is not expected in Australian taxis – though it is appreciated. Only generally tip a driver who has delivered a service that is above expectations.

Other Taxi Etiquette Basics:

  • be ready for your taxi when it arrives
  • be honest when booking about number of people travelling and luggage amounts to be carried if applicable
  • be polite to your driver – and expect them to be professional in return
  • don’t smoke in your taxi
  • don’t use profane language in your taxi
  • don’t eat or drink in the cab
  • don’t shout or become aggressive
  • don’t engage in backseat PDA
  • don’t leave rubbish behind in the cab
  • be patient – drivers can get stuck in traffic
  • you can request music or radio be turned down

Basically – respect the taxi as your driver’s office – that’s what it is.

Luke Vrkic

Written by Luke Vrkic

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