Floating around the UAE! Dubai launches first ferry line
Dubai's Public Transport Agency aims to boost marine transport to 1.25 million customers by the end of 2014 (File/AFP)
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The Public Transport Agency (PTA) of the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) launched a new Dubai Ferry line on Monday to boost marine transport, which is considered an important link in Dubai’s transport system. Services on the new line between Marina Mall and Al Ghubaiba Station will be offered at 1pm and 6.30pm.
With this, five long-distance trips — from one hour or more from either Dubai Marina or Al Ghubaiba or a round trip service — are being offered. The move is expected to increase the Dubai Ferry ridership by 30 per cent.
The ridership from January until August this year stood at 75,000. The Marine Transport Department of the PTA is hoping to increase this to 1.25 million customers by the end of 2014.
The Dubai Ferry was first launched in March, 2011, during the Dubai Boat Show as part of the Strategic Plan of Marine Transport. These services have been catering to needs of its customers to hold their personal events on the high seas at comparatively affordable rates.
Hussain Khan Saheb, Director of Marine Transport at the PTA, said the ferry has added a “distinguished service” to the marine transport network of Dubai. It accordingly brings about a quantum shift in the calibre of services offered to residents and tourists within the Creek area, tourist areas and waterfronts in the first stage, he said.
Services will be expanded to Al Mamzar, Jumeirah, World Island and Palm Island soon. “These additional services of different modes of transport will reduce the ... (duration) ... of (the) journey ... which sometimes takes hours.”
Khan Saheb said the RTA’s initiatives encourage the public to use marine transport such as Abras, water buses, water taxis and the Dubai Ferry.
“Water taxi is (an) on demand service and goes to 32 water taxi stations or any round trip service. Abra is servicing Deira Old Souq Abra Station to Bur Dubai Abra Station or from Sabkha Abra Station to Dubai Old Souq Abra Station at Dh1 a passenger or by chartered cruising at Dh120 one-hour round trip at all stations. Water buses have six stations in Dubai Creek and four stations in Dubai Marina.”
By Lily B. Libo-on
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