Arrival by cab or rented car
This is an expensive way of traveling from Shanghai to Hangzhou. The advantage is flexibility as you can flag down a cab anywhere and anytime in Shanghai and give the driver your destination address in Hangzhou. However as cab drivers normally remain within the city, they might not know how to get to your destination in Hangzhou. Major cab companies in Shanghai are Dazhong, Qiangsheng, Jinjiang and Haibo.
It is approximately 2- 4 hours depending on traffic conditions, departure location and destination.
You can go by the meter or negotiate the price beforehand. It is recommended to keep the meter running even after negotiation. Prices range from 700 to 800 yuan.
- Always ask for the receipt. Just in case you leave anything behind, you have the details of the cab which you can refer to the cab company for help. However, this is only possible if you go by meter pricing or keep the meter running.
- Try to travel by day and if you have to travel by night, you can book a cab from major cab companies (Dazhong, Qiangsheng, Jinjiang and Haibo) in Shanghai to ensure safety.
- Most cab drivers might not be willing to travel all the way out of the city so you might have a hard time getting a ride. Therefore it is better to go by train since there are frequent services to Hangzhou, prices are cheaper, and Hangzhou Railway Station is near the city's center. It is also easier to get a cab from Hangzhou station to your final destination as the local cab drivers would probably know the place better.
By rented car
Driving to Hangzhou is not recommended especially if you are a foreigner and not familiar with the roads, rules, regulations and local driving habits which vary from city to city. However, if you do wish to drive, you can try companies like Hertz and Avis for rental car services in Shanghai.