Ulaanbaatar has an estimated 600 official taxis (UB taxi service) of 11 companies operating in the city. That is not enough to serve at least for the 1.4 million population of the Mongolian capital city. That’s why many people do taxi service with their private cars.
Ulaanbaatar taxis can be taken on the street, from virtually anywhere you like, at most times and in most areas. Besides, there are some cab stands with an official taxis in Ulaanbaatar airport, State department store, train station.
It is not easy to take an official taxi on the street when you are not calling the taxi companies. When you on the road for a cab, privet cars stop for your taxi service is a common thing in the city.
Public buses in Ulaanbaatar city stop operations around 10:00 p.m., and demand for taxis rises at this time. You can see many cars are at every bus station for a taxi service and at the airport, train station, bus terminals, bars and nightclubs at night time.
Mongolian taxi fare is not expensive. In the Ulaanbaatar city, a taxi fare is 1000 MNT (0.4 USD) per km. when you call the official taxi, the base fee is 1500 MNT.
There are also some flat taxi fares for some distances, including to/from the train station, bus terminal or airport.
For example: if taking a taxi to the airport from downtown, the one-way fee is typically between 25000 and 30000 MNT even though the airport is 18 km from the city center.
So, when you travel for long-distance, you can bargain a fare with private taxis on the price, not with official taxis.
All official taxis have fare meters. Private taxis don’t have fare meters, but you can control the distance by using google map, and it can prevent you from overcharging.
Tipping is standard in UB nowadays. Credit cards not accepted by taxi drivers. Cash is the preferred method in Mongolia.
Now you know the taxi service situation and price ranges in Ulaanbaatar city. Here are the ways of taking a taxi.
You can stand along the road on the street and lift your hand to call a cab. Whatever official taxis or private cars, they will stop and pick you up.
It is the easiest and quickest way to take a taxi, and there are no base fees.
Prefer to official taxis, call the taxi companies and ask the taxi plate number and arrival time. Of course, this option makes you safe and reliable. You can ask them drivers speak English or not. They add the base fee to the taxi fare of your travel distance.
Another way is using taxi apps to take a taxi. There is no Uber taxi app in Mongolia. However, there are UBCab and ABA taxi Mongolia taxi apps used in Mongolia. These two taxi apps are widely used in Ulaanbaatar city and have an English menu. They have their own registered and trusted drivers. Fare is the same as 1000 MNT per km. You can download it on the App Store and Play Store.
If you prefer a more private and safest way of service, you can hire a driver with a car. Some companies offer this service with an English speaking driver.