Taxi And Bus Hire Companies
In Safed you will see a lot of white taxis, with a taxi registration number painted on the side of the car, plying for hire. Each taxi has a little flag that shows the name and phone number of the taxi company. The taxi light on the front of the car unfortunately doesn't indicate whether the taxi is already hired or not. There are two types of taxi hires in Israel: a "special" or private taxi and a sherut or shared taxi.
In Safed there is an excellent sherut service during the daytime that goes around the main part of Safed for 6shks a ride, which is only 2shks more than the bus fare. A sherut will pick up other passengers on the way, so don't be surprised if there is a lot of changing of seats during the ride as people get on or are dropped off.
A main pickup is in front of the Papaya shoe store on the corner of Jerusalem Street and Aliyah Bet Street and the sherut goes on a fairly circular route around the center of town, down the hill, via Weizmann Street with its Government Offices to the Maor Haim neighborhood and back up again. You can pick up a sherut almost anywhere along the route or by waiting at most bus stops. You just need to signal to a passing taxi. Just make sure it's a sherut before getting in, otherwise they will charge you for a "special". There is also another route that goes via Palmach and Hanassi, towards the Shikun Darom neighborhood and back up towards the bus station.
You can order a "special" in advance or pick up a passing taxi on the street to take you wherever you want to go in Safed. The regular "special" fare within Safed is 17 - 20 shks during the day, with higher prices at night and erev Shabbat or Chag.
Here is a guide to prices per person for daytime journeys outside of Safed.
For Rosh Pina expect to pay around 40-50 shks, for Tiberius 120 -150, Akko 200- 220, Jerusalem 650 -700, and for Ben Gurion airport around 650 shks. Of course all prices are negotiable, subject to change, and vary slightly from cab company to cab company.
You can also hire a taxi to tour around the area for a day or part of a day. Many companies have large cars or minibuses (tenders) for larger groups, so ring around to see what is available in advance of your trip. There are also a number of bus hire companies which have everything from 10 - 20 seater minibuses to 40+ seater coaches.
Here are just a few of the many taxi companies in Safed, most of which don't operate on Shabbat. If you think you will need a taxi on Shabbat you should enquire a day or so in advance to make the necessary arrangements.
Taxi Ari: 04 699 9994 or 1800 399 994 is one of the bigger companies
Taxi Benny: 052 370 1712 or 057 722 1915
Taxi S.A.L: 04 692 4081 This company has male and female drivers.
Taxi HaMavrich: 1 800 32 50 50 or 04 697 4222
Taxi Tamir: 04 697 2111 or 057 725 4433
Bus Hire Companies.
Here are just a few of the well-known bus hire companies that have a range of bus sizes available for hire.
Hassaot Yitzhak Malka: 050 550 0576 or 050 330 0572
Shalom Et Segal: 04 690 2226
Matayelay Safed V Canaan: 04 697 4548