Uber in Thessaloniki: The White Tower, the city's most famous landmark, against a clear sky.

Uber in Thessaloniki: Your Complete Guide to Rides & Fares (2024)

Why Is There Only Uber Taxi in Thessaloniki? All Your Alternatives to Navigate the City Like a Local and Make the Most of Your Trip!

If you’re visiting Greece’s second largest city, Thessaloniki, you might wonder if Uber is available.

It’s a reasonable question given that the app is incredibly popular, operating in over 10,000 cities worldwide, and is generally a safe option for passengers.

One of the perks of using Uber is knowing your fare in advance, or having the ride metered, which I find useful based on my local experiences with taxis in Thessaloniki.

Especially if you are visiting from abroad, some taxi drivers tend to “get confused” with the routes and the fares – which is a common issue in many cities worldwide, to be fair.

Thankfully, in Thessaloniki, such drivers are rare and usually don’t attempt to overcharge, but exceptions always exist.

So, what can you do to protect yourself?

Is There Uber in Thessaloniki?

Aristotelous Square in Thessaloniki, with people walking by and surrounded by grand, white buildings.

As you can read in detail in the article “Uber In Athens? What’s Really Going On!“, Uber had to partially suspend its operations in Greece back in 2018 due to legal challenges from the local taxi industry.

Specifically, professional drivers opposed the operation of UberX, the company’s basic service level provided by non-professional drivers.

Instead of leaving the country, Uber decided to modify its operations and suspend UberX.

Subsequently, Uber chose to partner exclusively with local professional drivers, making Uber Taxi available.

Thus, if you use Uber in Thessaloniki, you’ll find that it operates, but only for licensed taxis, recognizable by their blue color.

You’ll also have the option to pay with your card or PayPal, even if the driver doesn’t have a POS machine.

In my opinion, using Uber or its alternatives is better than hailing a street taxi.

As mentioned earlier, only a small minority of taxi drivers in Thessaloniki behave unprofessionally.

However, the last thing you want on your vacation is to encounter one of these unprofessionals and end up arguing, ruining your mood.

Uber Alternatives in Thessaloniki

Close-up of a black and yellow taxi sign atop a car, signaling available services in the city.

Of course, Uber isn’t the only solution in Thessaloniki.

The city, home to about a million people, has other competing apps:

1. The most popular Uber alternative in Thessaloniki is FREE NOW, especially among the locals. Many taxi drivers in the city use this app due to its high popularity. However, it charges an extra 1.2 euros compared to catching a taxi on the street.

2. Another app gaining popularity is Taxiplon, which you can also use to call a taxi.

However, be careful; finding a taxi during rush hours can be challenging with any app. Drivers prefer to turn off their phones and pick up passengers directly from the street to avoid paying fees to the apps.

3. If you are not in a hurry, you can look for a taxi on the street. However, for instance, if you are landing or need to catch your flight, I recommend using a pre-booked taxi to avoid stress.

The service I usually recommend, especially for airport and port transfers, is the local startup Welcome Pickups; it offers excellent service and has rapidly expanded to many cities abroad.

Despite their flat rate being a few euros more expensive, they are worth it.

They use only top-rated drivers, wait for you at the arranged meeting point, even if your arrival is delayed, and have numerous positive reviews on TripAdvisor and Trustpilot.

If you still decide to try hailing a taxi from the street, I recommend asking the approximate fare to your destination in advance.

Moreover, keep in mind that most drivers do not have POS machines in their taxis, so you will need cash.

What Are the Taxi Fares in Thessaloniki?

The famous Church of Agios Dimitrios in Thessaloniki with its distinctive brick facade.

In Greece, the government sets the taxi fares for the entire country, including Thessaloniki. This regulation also applies to Uber Taxi.

The final price of a ride is based on travel time, distance, and any extra charges.

Additionally, taxi prices vary depending on the time of day.

So, a ride late at night will typically cost more than the same ride in the morning.

Specifically, the charges are the following:

Minimum fare4,00 euros
Base fare1,80 euros
Cost per km0,90 euros between 05:00 and 23:59 and 1,25 euros between 00:00 and 04:59.
Cost per km outside city limits1,25 euros
Cost per minute0,25 euros. This charge only applies when the Taxi vehicle fully stops (e.g., traffic lights, STOP signs, etc.).

Furthermore, there are specific surcharges:

Airport surcharge4,00 euros
Luggage surcharge (heavier than 10kg)0,39 euros each
Harbor, train station, or bus stops surcharge1,07 euros

Remember that the car’s taximeter will be operational throughout your journey and will calculate your fare in real-time, minus any surcharges.

The driver will stop the taximeter at the end of the route and determine the final fare, including any applicable surcharges.

On the contrary, note that there is a flat rate for taxis from Thessaloniki Airport to the city center.

Specifically, the fare is 25 euros from 5:00 AM to 11:59 PM, and it increases to 35 euros from midnight to 5:00 AM.

Do I Need Uber in Thessaloniki?

People strolling on the seafront promenade of Thessaloniki.

Unfortunately, Thessaloniki does not have a decent public transportation network.

The metro is under construction and is not expected to be operational before the end of 2024.

Thus, passengers can only use the city buses.

On the positive side, the center of Thessaloniki is very pedestrian-friendly, especially the waterfront.

Therefore, you can walk to most places, while an alternative option is electric scooters.

On the other hand, if you intend to cover long distances, e.g., to go to the beach, you can always rent a car.

You can search online for the best prices on Rentalcars.com.

But if you need a taxi, then use one of the above services.

Uber Across Greece

Uber in Thessaloki: Taxi driver checking his mobile phone, likely using a GPS app for navigation.

I hope this article helped you understand how the Uber app functions in Thessaloniki.

You may also want to check out how Uber operates in other Greek destinations.

Specifically, you can read about Uber in Athens, Uber in Santorini, and Uber in Corfu.

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Make Your Trip Easier

Accommodation
I always book my accommodation with a reliable service like Booking.com. Besides their price guarantee, you can rest assured that you will have 24/7 support in the event of any problems with your hotel. Always make sure you read reviews from other guests before booking.

Airport Transfer
If you want to get to and from the airport with peace of mind, I recommend pre-booking your taxi with Welcome Pickups. Their flat rate is a few euros more expensive than random taxis, but they are totally worth it. They use local English-speaking drivers, wait for you at the arranged meeting point, even if your arrival is delayed, and introduce you to the city along the way.

Flight
Don’t forget to use Skyscanner before booking your flights, as it compares different airlines to provide the cheapest and fastest solutions. Moreover, you can save a lot of money if you are flexible with your dates.

Travel Insurance
Nobody wants to think about all the things that could go wrong on a trip. However, these things can happen, so do not miss taking out travel insurance: SafetyWing is the one I use as its plans are affordable and can save you a lot of trouble.

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