I thought it would be worth a mention as to how to catch a taxi in Almaty as it is definitely nothing like hailing one of the million cabs in South Korea or China.
It’s relatively straight forward really. Simply stand on the road with your arm out in a downward fashion 45-75 degrees to your side with your hand pointing to the ground, unlike how you would do it in America with your arm waving in the air.
Sounds simple enough right, but here’s the kicker. After talking to some of the Kazakhstan Peace Corps we met here they said that essentially, every car in the city is a taxi. While I have seen some more official looking cabs for the most part anyone can pull over and give you a ride.
We had this experience while trying to get to Mega Center on the SW side of the city. I put my arm out and a late model Mercedes-Benz pulled over. After haggling the price down we jumped in and away he went blaring his radio with dance music.
WARNING : Watch out for cars that pull over with two or more guys in them and basically use your common sense when deciding to get in a strangers car.