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Kuwait Taxi - Prices and Useful Tips for Taxis in Kuwait

15 February 2020

Kuwait City has no shortage of transportation options whether for tourists or corporate travellers. Kuwait has a well-developed road system, but, public transport is mostly limited to buses and taxis. Plans are on to build a railway system in future, but, buses, cars or taxis are the only means of common public transport available in Kuwait at present.

Getting around Kuwait is easy, provided you know your way, and the whole of Metropolitan Area, which is laid out in a conical grid-like pattern of main roads, feeder roads and local roads. Further, most road signs are in English and Arabic, although there are no signs posted in many streets.

The two state-owned public bus companies are KPTC (Kuwait Public Transport Company) and the City Bus. Their routes cover most of the densely populated areas in Kuwait.

But, vast majority of expatriates depend on taxis for getting around on daily basis. In Kuwait, taxis are reliable, and prices are usually reasonable. Once you get to know a driver, you can also contact him personally when calling a taxi.

There are several types of taxis – Call taxis, Wanettes, and Orange cabs

For hiring a taxi in Kuwait, you can choose any of the following options:

1. Walk out and hail a passing cab from the road
2. Call up a taxi company and get them to pick you up
3. Opt for a white pick-up truck

But, of all the above said options, the best method to hail a taxi is to book one in advance. State your destination and check the price before it is despatched.

taxi fares in Kuwait

Which is cheaper in Kuwait, taxi or Uber?

Although Uber has not entered into ‘kuwait yet, there are some other common ride-booking apps available in the country, ‘Q8 Taxi’,’ Careem’ and ‘Grand Limo’ to name a few.

The Dubai-based ride-hailing service Careem (www.careem.com) is the closest to Uber that you can get in Kuwait. If you are already familiar with Uber, you can easily work through this app. 

Careem can be a convenient alternative to a taxi ride. You just have to download the app, register your details and use this service, which starts with KD1.5 per ride. Careem also helps you in scheduling airport rides, through its reliable and extensive private car network.

Is taxi expensive in Kuwait?

Taxis fares start from KD1.5 and are a useful, popular and air-conditioned way of getting around. However, they are comparatively expensive when travelling outside the city area, when costs can increase to KD10 per hour. If you want to do some exploring around Kuwait by taxi, it’s better to agree on a half- or full-day rate in advance.

Careem is metered, and their fares are monitored and measured as per Kuwaiti laws. The use of technology helps Careem users to choose the type of car that suits them, know the fare prior to booking the ride and check the estimated time of arrival of the cab.

Are taxis safe in Kuwait?

Taxis in Kuwait are pretty safe, but you should ensure that the drivers have their ID on the back of their seat. You can negotiate prices, especially if you stay around Kuwait city, the prices may not be more than KD2. All taxis from airport can cost you KD7 irrespective of whether your ride is one hour or five minutes. But, please note that you may have to pay in cash, and ensure that you have smaller notes, coins in case of small journeys. Overall, Kuwait is pretty safe, but make sure you get into a proper taxi from the airport, as there will be drivers offering you a ride for cheaper rates, but, it is not worth the risk. Carry your passport with you always to be on the safer side.

Types of Taxis

Call-taxis are mostly white in colour, and can be found at any hotel. They can be ordered to and from the airport as well. Few other taxis, the white and beige ones are also available, and can be hailed from streets across Kuwait. However, the fare should be negotiated before the trip, and these taxis are in plenty at every street corner, and can be easily spotted out. There are also the orange coloured taxis that drive on a specific route. They are allowed to pick up and drop people anywhere on the route. These taxis can also be shared with friends and strangers.

The other type of taxi is the one that can be accessed at hotels. They are usually summoned by a phone call. You can tell if it is a taxi by the orange number plate. Most have their company name written on one side too.

The airport operates its own taxi service, for which you will pay a premium, with additional charges for catching a taxi at night. The other company that is permitted to offer a service from the airport is City Limo.

Uber is not available in Kuwait, but, the Dubai-based Careem service works here as a convenient alternative to taxi. Download the app at www.careem.com and use this service, with its fare starting from KD1.5 per ride.

Taxi Fares

Both taxis and cars are expensive in Kuwait. But, due to their better accessibility, people use it often. According to Kuwaiti law, all taxis are bound to go by the meter. However, due to lack of strict implementation of this law, they do not use the meter. But, to be on the safer side, you may have to emphasize them to use it.

The starting rate for a Taxi (normal tariff) is KWD1.00 (could be in the rage KD0.75 to KD1.5)

The normal tariff for a taxi 1km ride is KD0.5 to KD1.0

Taxi one hour waiting (normal tariff) is KD2 (may range from KD1 to KD3).

The estimated price for a distance of 3km is KD4.

Note: This is an estimated fare. The actual fare might differ due to time of the day, tolls, works (available routes), different car companies, error in collecting prices and other human or software error.

Taxis fares start from KD1.5 and are a useful, popular and air-conditioned way of getting around. However, they are comparatively expensive when travelling outside the city area, when costs can increase to KD10 per hour. If you want to do some exploring around Kuwait by taxi, it’s better to agree on a half- or full-day rate in advance.

Fares get more expensive when trips cross area boundaries, and also increase considerably at night. The actual fare for a trip is decided by the driver’s controller over the radio, when the cab is booked, or at the end of the trip.

Taxi drivers generally appreciate a small tip for long journeys.


  • Majority of the taxi drivers speak little English, so learn the Arabic for communicating the basic directions, like left, right etc.
  • Generally, taxi drivers in Kuwait seem friendly and helpful. If you are a female, ensure that you get in at the back. Also, it is better for women not to hail a taxi from roadside (especially the white pick-up trucks), as they tend to pick up other passengers en-route, and it is hard to differentiate a legitimate vehicle from a random one. But, if you are short of cash, it may be an option to consider. If you are a lone female traveller, it is better not to travel alone in a taxi, especially after sunset when it is dark.
  • If you are hiring a taxi from the roadside, there is possibility that they might stop and pick up other passengers, and so, if you are sharing your ride, ensure that the fare is cheaper.
  • Find a taxi company that is trust-worthy, reliable and speaks your language. Ensure that you telephone about 20 to 30 minutes in advance.
  • Pick-up trucks act as taxi service, but, they are actually authorized only to carry goods and passengers with goods. This service is generally not recommended for female travellers.
  • Taxi companies in Kuwait are not regulated, and not all taxis have seat belts. So, when booking a taxi, ensure that they have a seat belt.
  • Generally taxi drivers have a fair knowledge of the city and surrounds. If necessary, show a map of your destination, or give them a landmark such as a hotel, or main shopping centre in the locality.

Listed here are contact numbers of few taxi companies in Kuwait

Air Arabia Farwaniya - 22206356
Q8 Taxi - 50497997 / 50498998
Al Basha Taxi Farwaniya - 24765496 / 66632250
Salwa Taxi - 25658219
Mustafa Karam Taxi - 23980044
Al Reef Taxi - 24717044
Al Quds Taxi - 22413414
Wahet Al Jahra Taxi - 24673000
Al Samah Taxi - 25660866
British Taxi - 23912282
Makati Manila Taxi - 25753004
Al Rimal Al Dahabiah Taxi - 25726444
Al Osta Taxi - 22410534
Taxi Adwa Fahaheel - 50012141 / 50012141
Burgan Taxi - 25750043
Middle East Taxi Tel : 5726644
Al-Amal Taxi Company Tel : 5321883
Al-Abraj Taxi Tel : 4319940
Qadisiya Taxi Tel : 5733504
British Taxi Tel : 23912282 / 22391229
Al-Osta Taxi Tel : 22410534 / 22412239
Special Taxi Tel : 23921700 / 23921800
Al-Rissalah Taxi Tel : 25730398 / 25758779
Al-Millionaire Taxi Tel : 22666995 / 22666994
Al-Wehdah Taxi Tel : 25528500 / 25528900
Burgan Taxi Tel : 25750043 / 25750042
Mishwar Taxi Tel : 25729727 / 25729728
Al-Jamaher Taxi Tel : 25733100 / 25733400
Asia Taxi Tel : 24888074 / 24888075
Emirates Taxi Tel : 24745006 / 24745007
Al-Abraj Taxi Tel : 24319940
Al-Arz Taxi Tel : 23727755 / 22612763
Al-Alfain Taxi Tel : 24810630 / 25613100
Al-Aman Taxi Tel : 23721112 / 23711115
Al-Omam Taxi Tel : 22404846
Al-Amwaj Taxi Tel : 22654938
Al-Awal Taxi Tel : 25323091 / 25321883
Al-Basha Taxi Tel : 1808055
Al-Tahreer Taxi Tel : 24812200 / 25399448
Al-Duro'o Taxi Tel : 22450777 /25633332
Al-Rifa'a Taxi Tel : 22422112
Al-Rige'e Taxi Tel : 24881986
Al-Riad Taxi Tel : 22427750
Al-Sahel Taxi Tel : 23917161 / 23727707

Robin Vinod

Writer/blogger who writes on topics such as travel, real estate, employment and everyday life on GCC countries.

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