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Taxi! Five free apps for hailing a legit cab

Leah Yamshon | Jan. 2, 2014
Stop waving your hand at every passing cab. Hail them with your phone instead.

As a customer, just launch the app, plug in your trip information, and request a cab. You'll see all of the nearby Flywheel cabs on a map, and you can tap on one to request that specific cab. The driver receives a ping, accepts your ride request, and comes to get you. Like Taxi Magic and NexTaxi, you can view the cab's route in real time to track your ride's arrival. A cab ride on Flywheel costs the normal metered fare, plus a $1 service fee.

Planning a trip abroad? Mytaxi (free for iOS, Android, and Windows Phone 8) could be a useful resource if you're gallivanting around Europe: It serves the Washington D.C. area as well as 40 international cities.

Launch the app to hail a cab and enter any special requests, like a wheelchair accessible cab, or a larger cab to accommodate luggage. 

Like the others, you can watch your cab approach your location via GPS in the app's map—which seems to be a standard feature of taxi apps these days. If you really like a specific driver, or if a certain cab type suits your needs best, you can mark that information as a favorite. Mytaxi charges the standard metered fare.

Though Hailo (free for iOS and Android) isn't as widespread as some of the other taxi apps, it holds its own thanks to its detailed driver profiles, complete with a photo. Serving 16 cities across the U.S., Canada, Japan, and Europe, Hailo finds available cabs nearby and gives you estimates on pickup time and fare. Once you've requested a cab, you'll be able to track its route in real time, pay with your credit card through the app, and get an email receipt. Hailo charges standard metered rates, plus a convenience fee of $1 to $2 depending on peak or off-peak hours.


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