Goa, with its view of the shimmering Arabian sea, swaying palm trees, fantastic eating joints and nightlife is one of India’s premier tourist destinations. Now, all this paints a very pretty picture but what doesn’t is the stress that a lot of tourists face on holiday when it comes to dealing with the taxi situation. If it’s not exorbitant rates for a round trip, whatever the distance, it’s a taxi strike which inconveniences tourists coming or leaving the state. Those are just two examples of the troubles with taxi operators in Goa. However, it seems like these troubles could soon be a thing of the past. The Goa Tourism Development Corporation (GTDC) is all set to launch its very own taxi app ‘GOAMILES’ this Monday, the 6th of August 2018.
GOAMILES taxi app to launch on Monday, 6th August 2018
The app has been in its final testing stages over the last couple of months. It’s all set to be released this coming week, with at least 2,800 taxis that have shown interest in signing up. With the launch of GOAMILES, tourists will be able to breathe easier and stress less over finding convenient modes of transport in the state.
“The launch of the app-based taxi service in Goa is going to bring a revolutionary change in the transportation system for all stakeholders that include taxi drivers, tourists, and locals. I am confident that tourist taxi drivers across Goa will all join the digital system so that Goa does not lag behind other states where such systems are working successfully,” said Tourism Minister Manohar Azgaonkar.
According to the Chairman of Goa Tourism Development Corporation, Mr. Nilesh Cabral, GOAMILES is going to be a great tool for tourism. He says the GTDC anticipates that the general public will download the app and use it regularly. After all, it’s being launched for tourists as well as locals for their daily commute. “This app-based taxi service aims to boost the digital economy, enable ease of travel for tourists and give taxi drivers better income. This initiative offers not only a brand new customer experience but also makes taxi fare payment easy and secure,” Cabral said.
Additionally, the app will also be a quick and convenient system that will benefit the taxi drivers and make them partners in the digital system. It will also make it easier for the app’s users to find a taxi anywhere when they need a taxi.
A brand new experience
GOAMILES aims to make sure that its users have no hassles with anything taxi-related. From finding a taxi to paying for the journey, the app will give them a brand new experience. “GOAMILES will enable passengers to request a licensed, professional taxi driver. They will get to know what they are paying for and where their cab is heading to on their mobile app. The app will help drivers to acquire more customers by operating and partnering with existing taxi companies,” said managing director of ‘GOAMILES’ Utkarsh Dabhade.
So far, 2,800 taxis have signed up to be a part of GOAMILES. This is encouraging and therefore, these taxi drivers will be trained in etiquette, knowledge of tourist places, basic first aid, knowledge of culture and traditions of Goa so that they can emerge as Brand Ambassadors for Goa Tourism.
The app also offers something that Goa has never had before. Passengers can rate their taxi drivers. If a driver gets consistently high ratings, he gets the most business. “We want to ensure that GOAMILES passengers are served only by the best licensed and regulated drivers,” said Cabral adding, “Our ability to let consumers rate their rides means that drivers will have to step up their level of service. Consumers will have a voice, and this will improve the taxi business for all.”
Another interesting feature is that the app has a “last driver” feature that connects passengers instantly with the driver so they can arrange to retrieve any articles left behind.
GOAMILES is available for download on the Google Playstore as well the AppStore. When passengers request a ride, the nearest taxi will see the location, confirm pick-up and arrival time.
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