Long wait for taxis as cabbies cash in on Eid

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Long wait for taxis as cabbies cash in on Eid

Apart from shopping mall employees, taxi drivers might have been the busiest this Eid Al Adha as residents opted to avoid driving through traffic, making for long wait times for passengers in need of rides.


Dhanusha Gokulan

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Published: Mon 29 Oct 2012, 9:11 AM

Last updated: Tue 7 Apr 2015, 2:32 PM

Taxi drivers who were working over the Eid weekend said they had noticed a substantial increase in passengers over the past few days. Sharjah taxi driver and Pakistani national Tariq Mahmood said that he began his shift at 6am last Friday.

“My shift ended at 10pm. On an average, I collect about 20-25 passengers per day. On Friday, I ferried over 35 passengers. Most of them were commuting towards Dubai. I can say that business during Eid was definitely very good.”

Another Sharjah Taxi driver Mirtaj Akbar also said that most passengers wanted to go towards Dubai.

“I worked for about 18 hours during Eid. I began my shift at 6.30am and I worked up to 1.30 am. Most of my customers were families. I don’t remember the exact number of passengers, but it was more than the usual weekends.”

Both taxi drivers said that most passengers wanted to go to shopping malls and other local shopping centres, with a few wanting to commute to heritage sites in the emirates.

However, RTA taxi driver and Indian national Delton Sebastian said that he had about 65-70 passengers over both Friday and Saturday, with the heaviest amount of traffic moving towards The Dubai Mall.

“Most people wanted to go towards shopping malls. I have been working as a taxi driver for four-and-a-half years. Every year during Eid, we do experience a bigger rush than usual,” said Sebastian. He said there were very few people who commuted towards Sharjah.

However, the boon for cabbies meant longer wait times for passengers.

Oliver Santanio, a Filipino national and graphic designer, said he experienced long wait times for taxis over the weekend.

“I (spent) a very long time at The Dubai Mall waiting for cab, but I didn’t drive one bit this weekend.”

Santiano said he had used taxis to avoid the dual stresses of traffic and finding parking spots.

“I live in Sharjah and work in Dubai. I do own a vehicle, but I knew that finding a parking spot in any place across the UAE would have been a nightmare. So I used taxis instead. It was slightly heavier on the pocket, but it was better than driving around shopping malls in circles searching for a parking spot.”


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