Encyclopedia > Taxi

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A taxi (sometimes called a cab) is a public transport service provided to paying customers who can direct the vehicle to where they please. The service is typically provided with automobiles, but various human or animal powered vehicles or boats are also used or were used historically.

Taxis are regulated to greatly varying degrees in different places, from free-for-all to highly restrictive licensing schemes.

Methods of hiring, metering, negotiating fares and payment also differ significantly.

The fare often does not depend on the number of people travelling together in a taxi. Sometimes there is a system where strangers share a taxi and fares are per person.

London cabs are particularly famous on account of the specially constructed vehicles and the extensive training course ("the knowledge") required for fully licensed drivers. London's cab drivers are even well-known for having developed an especially big hippocampus, a region of the brain where, among other things, information about locations is stored.

In northern Europe it is not uncommon for expensive cars such as the Mercedes-Benz to be the taxi of choice. Taxis in less developed places can be a completely different experience, such as the ancient French cars typically found in Cairo. Accordingly fares vary greatly, but they are often much higher than for other public transport.

See also: Taxi Driver (movie), Taxi (sitcom)

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