In Edinburgh, Glasgow, and the larger cities, black hackney taxis—similar to those in London—with their "taxi" sign illuminated can be hailed on the street, or booked by phone (free of charge). If you call a private hire taxi from the phone book, expect a regular-looking car to pick you up. The only distinctions are that these private hire taxis have a special sign attached to their license plate indicating that they have a taxi license and they have a meter stuck on the dashboard, along with an ID card for the driver. Private hire taxis are cheaper than black hackney taxis and will pick you up only from a specific location. They will not pick you up off the street.
Scottish taxis are reliable, safe, and metered. Meters begin at £2 and should increase in 50p intervals. Beyond the larger cities, most communities of any size have a taxi service; your hotel will be able to supply telephone numbers. Very often you can find an advertisement for the local taxi service in public phone booths, online, or in the phone book.
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