Friday, 31 October 2014  -  07 Muharram 1436 H

Dubai taps taxi drivers as tour guides

Last updated: Friday, September 06, 2013 8:01 PM
Taxi drivers wait for passengers at a hotel parking lot in Dubai. — File photo

DUBAI — Taxi drivers in Dubai are being trained to act as tourist guides under a project launched by the Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM) and Dubai Taxi Corporation.

Mohammed Yousif Saleh, Dubai Taxi Corporation director of Fleet Operations, said drivers are currently enrolled in a course to train as tour guides, and 1,590 have already qualified.

Saleh says that 3,504 vehicles are currently within the Dubai fleet. The Dubai Taxi Corporation at the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) say that taxis in the region carried out more than 20.2 million trips during the first half of this year, at the rate of approximately 3.3 million trips monthly — transporting about 35.1 million passengers.

Saleh also noted that Dubai taxi fleet operational efficiency has reached 95.38 percent. The director added that a number of services, facilities and traveler initiatives were launched during the first half of 2013, and new services are being developed, including the “In-Safe Hands service” and “VIP vehicle service.”

Taxi drivers often work as informal tour guides in many countries, but these kinds of courses can give drivers an advantage not only in securing repeat business from clients, but improving customer service — which may result in additional profit and a happy customer. — Agencies

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