Taxis in Puerto Rico are not ubiquitous and are notorious for being expensive. I've come across most of them at the airport and tourist-frequented areas such as Old San Juan, as well as Plaza Las Américas. I had never taken a taxi in Puerto Rico, until the other night. We normally have friends who come pick us up, but this time we took a late night flight. Therefore, taking a cab was the best option. While waiting for our luggage at the baggage claim area, we were looking at a chart posted by the Puerto Rico Tourism Company. It indicates the taxi fare rates between the airport and the different areas around metro-San Juan.
According to this chart, our fare should have been a total of $10. I thought it sounded too good to be true. A friend of mine once paid $30 to go from the airport to the Caribe Hilton hotel. This is a trip which just takes 10-15 minutes or so, without traffic. Needless to say, I was a bit skeptical about the $10 fare. Once we got outside, we headed towards the taxi stand and we told them the area where we needed to go. We asked the guy how much and there was a pause. He said $25. When I asked about the fare chart, which said zone 1 would be $10, he just made a face and said "ahh, ese letrero no incluye maletas y ahora es muy tarde" (translation: that sign doesn't include luggage and it's really late now).
Word of advice for those of you who've never taken a cab in Puerto Rico, please haggle! You must negotiate a price before jumping in because taxis are not metered. I just tried Googling for information on taxis in Puerto Rico and I was amused at what I found. The Puerto Rico Tourism Company's Website provides information which is completely obsolete. Perhaps there's an updated version, but taxi riders beware! Another taxi driver ended up taking us home for a couple of bucks less, enough to buy a cup of Starbucks coffee. Next time, I'll definitely ask a taxi driver acquaintance for his phone number.