Taxis are a convenient way to get from a place to another in Okinawa. Surprisingly, they can be an affordable option when you have a group of people moving around together. (Taxi fare starts at 550yen)
How to use a taxi
1. To hail
Hailing a taxi in Okinawa is as simple as stepping off the curb and just stick out your arm. You can also find a taxi stand around monorail stations and malls, or ask your hotel’s receptionist to call for one for you. During the night, when the sign on the roof of the taxi is lit, it is available. The back door on the left side will open and close authomatically so be carefull not to stand too close!
Tell the driver your destination. If you do not speak Japanese or if your destination is not a well known place, it is recommended to point it out on a map. In case the driver doesn’t turn the meter on, taking a picture of the driver’s name on the left side in front of the seat may be wise as well.
3. Getting off
Pay only what’s on the meter. Some taxis accept credit cards and have a sticker showing this on the window. You can tell the driver for a receipt if you need one. (You are not supposed to give taxi drivers gratuity in Japan)
Number of passengers
General taxi cab can fit 4 people (except a Jumbo taxi), you can take another taxi for more passengers.
Late night additional fare
Rates are increased by 20 percent between 10pm and 5am.
These companies are recommended for your first visit to Okinawa by yourself or in a group. They provide excellent sightseeing services, can be reserved online and you can select one according to your needs.
There are some taxis available that can fit a wheelchair as well. (reservation required)
Getting on Okinawa expressway
When taking the expressway, additional fees will be applied to the fare. (some sightseeing taxis include tolls)
If you encounter a rude taxi driver
If your taxi driver is rude to you, get off as soon as possible. A new cab can easily be caught on any main road.