We recently began our European travel journey via Madrid and after landing at Madrid Barajas Airport we were excited to get to our hotel and begin our sightseeing. We stopped at the tourist information desk and asked where to catch a taxi to our hotel and the receptionist pointed down the terminal and replied that it would cost €30-35 (approx. $37.50-$43.75) for the journey. We hurried to the taxi and we were charged €24 (roughly $30). When we left Madrid for Paris again we hailed a taxi for the trip back to Barajas Airport; our fare €17 (roughly $21). How could two separate trips cost 2 unique fare charges? Could we have been taken advantage of because we looked like “American” tourists? And this happened in two other taxis as well. It is unfortunate that some taxi drivers take advantage of tourists.
To remedy the situation, we purchased an All-Madrid card to use on the metro train and buses. And for €18 ($22.50) we would travel anywhere in the Madrid area for three days. Lesson Learned: When budgeting for a trip, consider using an all-inclusive visitor’s pass to make better use of your travel/transportation dollars.
And while we were in Madrid we wanted to pick up souvenirs for family members. We went into several gift shops comparing prices and as time got away from us we realized that we would need to purchase some items at the airport. Everyone knows that airport gifts are more expensive than the local city vendors. But to our surprise, the gifts we saw in the airport were 2-3 times cheaper than the same items in Madrid gift shops. Lesson Learned: Upon arrival to a destination, make a quick check in the airport gift shop to price a couple of items. Then while you are shopping and sightseeing, compare prices with the airport gift shop before making a purchase.
¡Madrid!© mahatsorri on Flickr.com
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