Best taxi apps for iPhone: How to get a lift for less!

Best taxi apps for iPhone: How to get a lift for less!

What are the best iPhone apps for getting a ride to where you need to go? With services like Uber, Lyft, and many others cropping up, there are tons of options when it comes to getting around, no matter where you are in the world. Even if Uber isn't available in your area, there are other services, and even apps that pull in regular taxi services that can help you get a ride in no time. So if public transit just isn't your thing, these are currently the best apps to help you get where you need to go, when you need to be there!


Best taxi apps for iPhone: Uber

Uber is available in over 70 cities throughout 40 countries worldwide. Just fire up the app, create an account, and link a payment source. After that you're ready to go. Choose from an uberX ride — which are Uber verified drivers typically in unmarked cars — or choose a regular taxi, black car, or SUV. Toggling between different modes of transportation can also show you where drivers are in your vicinity so you know how long you'll be waiting for a ride. You can also get fare quotes right inside the Uber app. Once you've taken your Uber ride, your payment source is automatically charged so no physical money ever has to change hands.

For decent fares and lots of different ride options in many countries worldwide, get Uber.


Best taxi apps for iPhone: Lyft

Lyft is a service similiar to Uber that is available in many large cities. However, Lyft offers a few features that differ from Uber, with one of them being Lyft Line. With this service, you can find people that take the same route as you on a regular basis and split the fare with them. This makes it great for work commutes or other kinds of daily trips. Starting off, Line is available in the San Francisco and Los Angeles areas. Lyft's regular service lets you easily see where rides are, catch one, and easily pay right within the app. Lyft also offers larger vehicles via Lyft Plus that accommodate up to 6 people at once.

If you're in a major city in the US that supports Lyft, it's definitely worth trying out.

Sidecar Ride

Best taxi apps for iPhone: Sidecar

Sidecar is much like Uber and Lyft but takes you one step further into picking out your actual driver by letting you view actual vehicles and driver info ahead of time. Like other services, Sidecar also performs background checks, carries liability insurance, and lets you pay via the app. You'll see your fare upfront so you know exactly what you will be paying before you even choose your next ride. Sidecar is currently available in San Francisco and the Bay Area, Seattle, Los Angeles, San Diego, Chicago, Boston, Washington DC and Charlotte. My only negative at this point is that many drivers don't seem to have many ratings just yet, which may make some folks slightly wary.

If you want to have more control over vehicle type when selecting a ride, check out Sidecar.


Best taxi apps for iPhone: Curb

Curb, formerly Taxi Magic, is currently available in around 60 cities across the United States as well as select cities in the United Kingdom, Canada, and Mexico. The premise is much the same as Uber but simply ties in with existing taxi companies and their drivers. Curb currently boasts over 25,000 taxi drivers. As your taxi makes its way to your location, you'll be able to track its progress inside the Curb app so you can be sure you don't miss your ride. Like Uber, you link a payment account to Curb to pay for your fare through the app. You can also opt to pay cash if you'd like, something services like Uber don't allow.

For a more traditional taxi experience, and the option of paying with cash if you prefer, check out Curb.

Easy Taxi

Best taxi apps for iPhone: Easy Taxi

Easy Taxi is available in 86 cities across 26 countries and lets you quickly scrub through maps and find locations you'd like to be picked up at. From there, just make sure there are taxis in your area and you're good to go. Confirm your ride and then pay for it within the Easy Taxi app. Once you book a ride you should see the taxi's plate number and phone number appear on the map as well, making it easy for you to pick out both the car and the driver.

For great international availability, especially across the Middle East and Asia, check out Easy Taxi.

Your picks for finding rental cars and taxis on your iPhone?

If you frequently take taxis or rent cars, what iPhone apps have you found to be the most useful? Do you use any of the above services straight from your iPhone? Let me know in the comments!

Note: Originally published, April 2014. Updated, November 2014.

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Allyson Kazmucha

Senior editor for iMore. I can take apart an iPhone in less than 6 minutes. I also like coffee and Harry Potter more than anyone really should.

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Reader comments

Best taxi apps for iPhone: How to get a lift for less!


I've been a Zipcar member for years and always enjoyed the app. They only recently updated for iOS 7.

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I used Lyft twice and I am greatly satisfied. They do DMV background checks for their drivers and are about 50% cheaper then a regular cab.

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I used Lyft twice and I am greatly satisfied. They do DMV background checks for their drivers and are about 50% cheaper then a regular cab.

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Lyft is currently being sued by the wonderful city I live in. Any of the for hire driver services that don't have taxi/limo licenses and city permits are currently banned by city ordinance here. Hopefully the city can get their heads out of their asses and get with the times and allow fresh new ways for competition for the same of riders/passengers and the hard working, otherwise qualified drivers to do their thing.
I hate the established taxi company here. I'm a bartender and on occasion after getting frustrated with constant calls and a cab NOT showing up, I've called a limo service to ensure intoxicated persons arrived home safe and without drunken driving charges or worse!

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On a recent trip to India, I was so excited to use uber, but it just had no drivers available when I wanted a ride. They have just 1 or two drivers in the city, and claim that as one of the 70 or 100 cities they cover.

It's irritating because I drummed up the expectations so much, my friends were wondering what's so cool about uber. It's out of the world when it works. (Just never worked for me)

I have used it in SF/LA/DC and it work quite well (except for their s(pl)urge pricing. My India experience leads me to question how well uber performs in smaller cities in US or outside US.

Allyson, you should try Summon (see! This app offers a choice of taxi or personal car. Unlike Uber and Lyft, Summon opposes surge pricing. Summon also has a unique program called FareBack, which gives customers a credit on each ride to use towards future Summon rides. This makes Summon the least expensive on-demand rides app.

Allyson, great review! I love my Note 4. In what town/state is that Hospoda & Pivnice place? It sounds like it might be a Czech restaurant, which I'm always searching for!

Allyson, I know it's in limited locations, but Flywheel is a vitally important service. You would be doing a great service to help it become more widely known. Hopefully that will lead to it being rolled out in more areas.
I have no connection to Flywheel (or any cab or ride service), but Flywheel is the ONLY ride service I'll use.

It can definitely be a good idea to look into riding a taxi. In a lot of places it can be really difficult to even get a taxi to take you somewhere, then you have to deal with the price. Apps like these could definitely help make things significantly easier for people.

I had no idea that this service existed! I usually call my friends to come pick me up from things that are really far from my apartment. However, now that I know that this taxi service exists throughout the U.S. I can stop relying on my friends! Thank you so much for this information!

I had no idea that there were so many different apps for taxi services. I'll be traveling to a big city so I want to make sure I get a good taxi service. It seems like a good idea to try out one of these apps. Thanks for sharing.