The Trolley and the Ecovia buses in Quito are the most modern and efficient public transportation in the country. Their routes are clearly published on maps and at the bus stops. There are also numerous private buses that traverse the city, but their routes are not published other than on the buses themselves, and they are complicated to navigate. It is better to use taxis, as they are relatively inexpensive as well.
Cabs are a very popular way to move around in big cities. Taxis use meters to calculate the cost of your ride. In Quito, the cost begins at US $0.37 and goes up based on time and distance. An average ride will be between US $2.50 to US $5. During the day, be sure to ask that the cab driver set the meter at the beginning of your trip. At night, some cabs stop using meters – but the cost of the ride at night should not exceed a dollar or two more than the same ride at daytime.
It is safer to use a radio taxi at night than to catch just any taxi off the street. Ask the clerk at the hotel to call one for you, and keep the number of a radio taxi service with you when you leave your hotel.