How to book Taxi in Kashmir and key things to keep in mind when planning your Itinerary & Budget

When you are planning your Kashmir Trip, there are few things you need to plan before thinking of booking a Taxi. Why? You travel plan will help you know how you want to move between the places and hence you will know your taxi booking requirements well. In this blogpost we will talk about some basics about how to book taxis in Kashmir. Where you need taxi, and where you may not need a taxi etc. Why it's important to find reliable taxi driver or why keep rotating your taxi driver during the Kashmir Trip? and a lot more, to ensure that you have a great trip and these Taxi drivers don't dictate your trip to Kashmir.

When you are planning your Kashmir Trip, there are few things you need to plan before thinking of booking a Taxi. Why? You travel plan will help you know how you want to move between the places and hence you will know your taxi booking requirements well. In this blogpost we will talk about some basics about how to book taxis in Kashmir. Where you need taxi, and where you may not need a taxi etc. Why it's important to find reliable taxi driver or why keep rotating your taxi driver during the Kashmir Trip? and a lot more, to ensure that you have a great trip and these Taxi drivers don't dictate your trip to Kashmir. 


Please note that photograph used here is from Kolkata as I didn't have any relevant taxi photograph from Kashmir. Wanted to mention in clearly because this photograph should set wrong expectations. 



Let me start by saying that Kashmir has lot of taxis available at any point of time. Recently Kashmir has been seeing lot of tourists and hence high demand. At times, you will be told to book much in advance so that you have at least a taxi when you are there. Don't get scared because of this argument and take conscious decisions by doing your own research. I was there in peak time of April'22, when there were lot of tourists in Kashmir valley. I had booked taxi for whole trip but that was not a wise call and I learnt through experience. 


Related Blogpost - Horse/Pony Riding Scam in Pahalgam - Kashmir Tourism based on lot of lies and lobbying to make the max possible money from each tourist


So what to know before booking Taxis in Kashmir Valley :


1.  You don't really need a taxi for moving between the places in Srinagar, but recommended if you want to have best comfort.

 

2. Most of the taxis in Kashmir charge on the basis of where you want to go and there are fixed charges, but negotiable. For example - Full day taxi for exploring Srinagar, Srinagar to Pahalgam and back etc. So there is no concept for per KM charges. 


3. These Taxi drivers are well connected with folks at different tourist places and hence they may influence you to do things which are in their benefit. This blogpost will give you detailed insights about scams running in Kashmir and Taxi drivers are important stakeholders.  


Related Blogpost - Gulmarg in Kashmir - Skip some of main scams and experience this beautiful place by thinking beyond the popular scam-station Gandola ride


So what are the recommendations to book Taxi in Kashmir? 


1. Talk to multiple Taxi providers and identify the one which sounds more flexible in terms of changing the itinerary or day plans. 

2. Have clear conversation about your daily plans and have clearly written down in terms of what all places you want to visit. 

3. Be clear about your plan and plan it well. Some places have lot of rush and then you may have to skip them you don't go there on time. Taxi driver will optimise for his/her route and wil not care if you are able to complete your wishlist or not.   

4. Book day-wise, may be. Next time I will visit Srinagar I will not book taxi on phone from Delhi. I will spend one day on my own in the city and find a vendor for 2nd day. If the day goes well, I will repeat with same vendor or will find someone else. When you are there, you have better control over what you want. Your hotel/Houseboat guy will have at least 5 vendors to refer, so don't worry. 


Related Blogpost - Nigeen Lake - A stunning lake connected to famous Dal lake and surrounded by Baghwanpura, Lal Bazar, Hari Parbat & Hazratbal locality of Srinagar city in Kashmir valley of India


Pahalgam is a special case : Why?

Sightseeing in Srinagar : Ask yourself if you really need a Taxi? Depends upon who you are and how much adventure you can afford to do :). Best comfort if Taxi but you easily get auto-rickshaws and that give you freedom. Chose wisely. 


Related Blogpost - Indians don't need to plan Holland's Keukenhof Gardens, as we have our own splendid Tulip Garden in Kashmir, surrounded by Grand Himalayan Mountain Ranges


How much did I pay for 5 days plan with a taxi operator? - 11,000 for the following plan.

Day-1 : Airport pickup and Srinagar sight-seeing

Day-2 : Srinagar-Pahalgam-Srinagar

Day-3 : Srinagar-Sonmarg-Srinagar

Day-4 : Srinagar-Gulmarg-Srinagar

Day-5 : Srinagar local and Airport Drop


That was a good deal in terms of money but not in terms of experience and flexibility. 


Related Blogpost - Sinthan top - Snow covered Mountain Pass, Popular Tourist destination between South Kashmir's beautiful Breng Valley in Anantnag district & Kishtwar in the Indian union territory of Jammu and Kashmir


Please drop your questions below through comments section. 

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