Taxis are by far the easiest method to get from place A to place B if you want to travel in Norway without renting a car, but the easiness also comes with a few downsides. Like most places in the world, there are plenty of taxis in Norway, and we will be looking closer at everything you need to know about riding taxis in Norway in this article.
There are lots of taxis in Norway, even in rural areas, but the main problem is that they are extremely expensive. Expect to pay several hundred NOK for a short 15 minute trip! I advise tourists to stay away from taxis if possible, unless you have a big travel budget and want to get to your destination as easily as possible.
Riding taxis is typically seen as a kind of luxury for most people in Norway, and not something you do without a special reason to do. That said, taxis do have their uses, and can be pretty great for when you need to get to your hotel at night after the last bus has departed, or when you need to bring lots of luggage with you from one place to another.
How to call for a taxi in Norway
There are many different taxi companies in Norway, so there’s not set guide on how to call for a taxi. Some cities will have multiple taxi companies, while others only will have a single one. Most places tend to have at least a few taxis, even very small towns.
The best method to find the correct taxi company is to simple search for “taxi + name of town or city” on Google and see which company pops up. You will find that many smaller towns and cities use NorgesTaxi, but that’s not always the case.
The booking itself should be easy enough, and the people at the other end of the telephone line will most certainly speak English. Just let them you where you are, how many are travelling, when you want the taxi, and where you are going. It is not common to get a price quote when booking the taxi.
You can also let the hotel call for a taxi for you. Just go to the clerk at the reception and let them know that you need a taxi. They will help you out with finding the local taxi company as well as booking the ride for you. They might even share some local tips on which taxi companies to avoid, or what you can expect to pay.
Most taxi companies also have their own app these days, which can make it a bit easier to book a taxi compared to calling for one.
Hailing taxis in the street
It’s not common to hail a running taxi like you would do in New York, but there are certain taxi stops where you can enter the taxi and book a ride without an advance booking. These taxi centrals are typically located in the middle of the city center, and is often a rather small area where taxis just chill out and wait to clients. Look at the photo at the top of the article to see an example of a taxi central in a smaller Norwegian town.
There are also taxi waiting areas where taxis will wait for clients, like on the photo below. You will typically find these designated taxi waiting areas outside airports, big malls and places like that where a lot of people will want to ride a taxi. You can see these spots by white letters with the word “taxi” written on it on the ground.
Taxi companies in the major cities in Norway
Below are some of the taxi companies that operates in some of the major cities in Norway. Just click on their website to find the telephone number you need to book a trip.
Tromsø: Tromsø Taxi.
Keep in mind that this is not an exhaustive list, and there are typically more taxi companies in all the cities.
Are taxis in Norway really that expensive?
Yes, taxis in Norway are really that expensive. This is not a myth or anything like that. Expect to pay several hundred crowns for a 5 – 10 km ride, and rides that last between 30 and 60 minutes can easily cost you 800 NOK or more.
Taxi companies are free to choose their own prices in Norway, and you can even haggle for a deal if you want. I advise you to agree on a price before driving, especially when driving from places like the airport to the city center. This will usually save you a few hundred crowns, but be aware that taxi drivers might not want to haggle.
If you do want to haggle, do it before you start the ride. Once you begin the ride, you are pretty much at the mercy of the taximeter, and it won’t do you any good trying to haggle a lower price after the ride has ended.
Do Norwegians use taxis?
Taxis are typically too expensive for Norwegians to regularly use, but there are some uses for taxis in Norway:
- Elderly or disabled people use taxis. If you have a problem that lead to reduced mobility or the ability to drive a car, you might get a type of card that allows you to drive taxis to visit the doctor or hospital, and only pay a small co-payment (usually 50 NOK).
- Drunk people use taxis. Taxis are super busy on the nights on Friday and Saturday, because there is usually very little public transport at night, and drunk people tend to prefer riding taxis home instead of walking.
- Rich people ride taxies. If you earn 1 million NOK a year, spending a few thousands on taxis every month might not be a big deal.
- When the work company is paying. Norwegian companies often send employees on conferences, and occasionally a taxi fare is required to get them where they need to go. Trips paid by companies can often make a pretty decent size of the income for taxi drivers, and it’s not uncommon to see businessmen use taxis to get to and from the airport, while charging the company credit card for the trip.
Frequently asked questions about riding taxis in Norway
How can you pay for the taxi ride?
You can either pay with cash or any bank card when riding a taxi in Norway. All taxis have bank terminals that allow you to pay with a debit or credit card.
Are taxi scams common in Norway?
Taxi scams are somewhat common. You might experience that taxi drivers will take a longer or more scenic route if they realize that you are unfamiliar with the area, so be aware of this.
Is it safe to ride a taxi in Norway?
Taxis in Norway are generally considered safe, but there have been reports of different kinds of assaults in taxis in the last few years. The general rule when riding a taxi is to not be overly drunk, and women not riding a taxi alone if they have been drinking or if it is late at night.