COVID-19: GPT will not charge transport fees from students
DUBAI - School transport service provider to retain its staff, plans no layoff
As the schools, colleges and universities have introduced e-learning lessons to their students, another transport service provider Gulf Pinnacle Transport has announced a big relief for parents by scrapping third-term transport fees to ease their financial woes.
"We have decided not to charge bus transport fees from students as the education institutions decided to complete third term of academic year 2019-20 through e-learning to contain coronavirus in the country," said Sachin Gupta, general manager of Gulf Pinnacle Investments LLC (GPI), the UAE subsidiary of Gulf Pinnacle Logistics, the owner of the student-bus transportation company, Gulf Pinnacle Transport (GPT).
"The decision will create some cash flow problems for the company, but we want to ease pressure on parents in this challenging time. Any payment that has already been made from April 1,2020 will be advanced to the period when the schools will reopen," Gupta said in a statement on Tuesday.
Earlier, School Transport Services (STS) and Pace Education Group have announced to waive off transport fees for students. As Khaleej Times reported earlier this week, parents had raised concerns about paying transportation and uniform fees in addition to full tuition fees.
The Head of GPT, Ganesh Sivaraman added that the company will retain its bus drivers and other support staff in these difficult times.
"We will continue to monitor the situation and keep active and open communication channels with all our employees to ensure they are secure and in good health," Sivaraman said.
"The authorities have been continuously taking initiatives to support all segments of society. We at GPL are committed to make student transportation a much safer and enjoyable experience," Gupta said.
The GPI General Manager further said that there is considerable stress on their courier business - Century Express Courier Services and CFS and Warehousing operations in Jebel Ali - Abdul Muhsen Shipping and So Safe Logistics due to the current situation created by COVID19.
GPT, which started with three school contracts in Dubai in August 2016, has a fleet of 275 buses transporting over 7,600 students from 13 schools. The company bagged the first place in RTA's prestigious Dubai Award for Sustainable Transport (DAST) in the "Transport Safety" category during the 2018 Awards ceremony.
Sivaraman appreciated the UAE government's measures to promote e-learning and engage the education institutions and students despite a challenging environment that impact the whole society. He also thanked the Board of Gulf Pinnacle Logistics for taking such a decision during the difficult situation created by COVID 19.