I have been here in my lovely second home for 9 blissful years. Way back in 2008 when I first set foot to this place, there were no metered taxis around the city that you can easily hail and get to your destination with comfort. Instead, you have to wait for ages for the taxis to pass by and if you are lucky enough to wait for 1 or 2 hours, finally cab will come. But your agony is not over yet, because negotiating how much will you pay until your destination will just have to take time. I remember one scenario when I was still new here.
Me: Muscat City Center brother! How much?
Taxi Driver: engage? 5 RO!
Me: No, no, no! I only pay 3 RO!
So if you are lucky enough and good in bargaining, you will get that ride. But if not, wait for the next one. When you are not blessed with patience to wait, you need to walk and find the nearest taxi stand or terminal.
In my case, I need to walk 2 kilometers to get to Rawasco taxi stand at that time. Anyway, ranting is not the main point of this post, because finally we have this news from one of the newspaper – Marhaba Taxis to hit Oman roads in March.
At last, Ingenuity Technologies LLC has obtained the license to run taxis at the Sultan Qaboos Port not only that as hotels will also provide on-call taxi services. Soon, Muscat will just be the same with the other cities around the world to have metered taxis.
However, fares will start at RO 3.5 for the first 5 kms. and 500 baisas per kilometer after the first 5 kms. If we are to compute how much I have to pay from my flat to my workplace then the figure will look like this. The nearest route from my flat to my office is 11.4 kilometers, RO 3.5 will be spent for the first 5 kms so there will be 6.4 kms remaining which I have to pay 500 baisas per kilometers and that will be RO 3.2 and the total fare for my travel will be RO 6.7.
With this figure, what do you guys think of the taxi fare? Is it for the masses or for tourists?