Taxis to and from Florence Airport (FLR)
Florence Airport handles more than one and a half million passengers per year, and offers various transportation options for these passengers. There is no actual train station at the airport, but there are bus and taxi services available. Many passengers enjoy the quick and convenient services of a taxi. The airport is commonly referred to as Amerigo Vespucci Airport, or Peretola Airport, and is situated only 4 km from the city center of Florence. It consists of two terminal buildings, one dedicated to Arrivals, and the other to Departures.
Many taxis are available outside the Arrivals terminal of the airport, although passengers could book a taxi service in advance of their trip to Florence. The number to book a taxi is +39 055 4242 / 4390 / 4499 / 4798. It is recommended to use only the services of authorized taxis at the airport, as their services are somewhat regulated by Italian laws. The journey to central Florence is a quick 15 minutes.
Official taxis in Italy can be recognized by their white or yellow color, and they display a ‘Taxi’ sign on their roof. They should also have an identifying number on their side (usually on the driver’s door), that can be quoted to the taxi company concerned should you experience any problems with the taxi driver. Under no circumstances should you accept any services offered to you in the terminal of the airport, even if their prices seem cheap. These individuals may be operating illegally, and their services may not be of high quality. All legitimate taxi drivers will be waiting at the taxi rank outside the airport, and they do not try to find ‘business’ in the Arrivals area.
Taxis are required to have a meter, a device which records the length of the journey traveled, and therefore helps determine your taxi fare. It is wise to ensure that this meter is turned on and in working order. If the driver claims that his meter is broken, it is best to negotiate the taxi fare before you leave the airport. The taxi fares are made up of the distance which you will be traveling, as well as numerous extra charges which could be applicable to your journey. These may include driving to and from the airport, luggage loaded, more than four passengers, traveling late at night, on weekends or on bank holidays, and the transport of animals. Late night driving is usually considered to be between 22:00 and 07:00. If you are unsure about which extra charges will be added to your fare, you may consult the driver. Many taxis are also required to have a list of their charges displayed in the taxi, and with an English version available.
Animals are most often permitted to travel in taxis, provided that they are in suitable containers. An extra charge is usually applicable for animals, although visually impaired individuals may travel with their guide dog free of charge.
Taxis are available to offer transport to Florence Airport as well, and taxi ranks can be found at any train or bus station, or at any main piazza in Florence. Visitors in Italy have not had much success in hailing a taxi from the street, however, this is not to say that they won’t stop for you if they are empty, but it is recommended that you go to one of the taxi ranks, or call for a taxi to collect you from your location. Keep in mind though that the taxi’s meter will be turned on from where it leaves to collect you, and not from your starting point, therefore don’t be surprised if your taxi fare is more expensive than you were expecting it to be.
The airport has limousine services available as well, by the companies of CO.A.VE., Transfer Services and VIP Car Limousine Services. This more specialized form of ‘taxi’ will normally need to be reserved in advance. Coave Limousine Service is open from 08:00 to 20:00, and their phone number is +39-055-340159, and their fax number is +39-055-318323. VIP Car Limousine Service is open from 09:00 to 21:00, and can be contacted by phone or fax at +39-055-3061229.
Although hiring a taxi from the airport will always be more expensive than other transportation options, many passengers find their speed, convenience and privacy to be worth the extra Euros. Tourist and general information is provided at information points within the Arrivals terminal.