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Getting around Dubai is about to get easier

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Taxi?
With you in two minutes…

No, I mean, how do I get one in Dubai?
With you in two minutes… it really is about to get a lot easier.

How come?
Careem has just signed a deal with the RTA which will mean that, if you have the Careem app, you will be able to book official Dubai taxis.

Will that make a huge difference?
Massive. For a start you will have immediate access to 9,841 taxis and 4,700 limousines. Better still, whereas Careem taxis are priced at 30 percent more than regular services, these regular taxis will all be priced the same as normal. So it means that if you are standing on a corner just about anywhere in Dubai, you will be able to get a taxi almost immediately.

Is this all part of something I keep hearing about called “Integrated Mobility Platform?”
Look at you! Spot on. This is the RTA’s grand vision to bring together all the various transport services under one booking system. In simple terms, it will be an app from which you can get access to, and bookings for, the Metro, trams, buses, water taxis, limos, the Palm Monorail and the Dubai Trolley. Even bicycles. Once it’s all up and running, it means you will be able to plan a journey across Dubai using the various different transport systems. In theory, this should make your journey smoother, faster and much easier to pay for.

When will this happen?
The first phase will start kicking in late next year.

Presumably the new Dubai Canal will also be part of this?
Absolutely. That is due to open in stages, beginning next month. One of the biggest construction phases for the canal has been for a marina, where water buses will be based and which can ferry both tourists and office workers across that part of Dubai. And in time, all this will be linked into the new RTA app.

So in five years’ time, what will my journey to work be like – assume I live in JLT and work in Downtown?
You would get on the RTA app, and, if you wanted a colourful journey, you could book an instant taxi to the Metro, get off at Safa Park, hop on a water bus to Business Bay, and then cycle the remainder of the journey to Downtown. All through one app and one payment system.

And how would I get home?
Well, by 2019 jetpacks for commercial use might be on the market.

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