Taxi fares: How much does a ride cost?

A meter inside the taxi calculates the cost of your ride and displays the fare. The cost of a taxi ride in Seattle is regulated, and each taxi charges the same fares. All meters print a receipt showing the charges for your trip.

The City of Seattle tests all meters at least once a year to ensure accuracy. Tested meters are sealed to prevent tampering.

Taxi fare is a combination of three separate charges:

  • drop charge
  • distance charge
  • time charge

You don't simultaneously pay both distance and time charges; you pay one or the other. This table summarizes Seattle taxi fares:

Taxi chargesFare rate
Drop charge: Applied as soon as you enter the taxi and accept a ride $2.60
Distance charge: Applied once the taxi is travelling to your destination $2.70 per mile
($0.30 per 1/9 mile)
Time charge: Applied when the taxi stops or travels at slow speeds during the trip (for example, at red lights or in heavy stop-and-go traffic) $0.50 per minute
($0.30 per 36 seconds)
Sea-Tac Airport flat rate (to/from downtown) varies by company