“The bill of Rs 4148.50 for a taxi from Manohar International in Mopa to a hotel in Benaulim sounds expensive, but we must not jump to conclusions as we are not aware of the brand of the taxi booked by the client,” stated Ernest Dias, COO of Sita Travels, when asked to comment on a taxi bill that has gone viral on social media.
The bill states that the distance covered is 65.86 km and the fare for the same is Rs 3227.14, amounting to Rs 49 per km return. Rs 484.07 is the service fee and Rs 160 is the airport charge. GST is Rs 278.29.
“Of course, travelling from South Goa to Mopa is going to cost more because of the distance, but it will not be as expensive as this bill going viral, as rates vary depending on the type of car. The rate of an AC car will be more than a non-AC car and rates for luxury cars will differ,” added Ernest.
GT Digital checked the fare from Mopa to Benaulim on a Goa taxi app, and the rate that popped up was Rs 4350 for a ride by Ertiga.
“Most of our clients prefer to travel in top-end cars. Rates vary and I am sure the client was not taken by surprise. Top-end taxis cost more. Many of our clients ask for such cars and don’t mind paying up,” stated a manager of a five star resort from South Goa on condition of anonymity.
“The government has decided that black and yellow taxis will not operate from Manohar International Airport and instead blue and white taxis are going to be introduced. The government has drawn a scheme of financial assistance for taxi owners opting for the blue and white taxis,” stated a senior officer of GMR.
“Once the road to the airport is ready, vehicles using the road will be charged a toll,” added the official.
“I paid Rs 1800 for a 40-kilometre distance from Dabolim airport. I have a cabbie from my village who comes and picks me up whenever I arrive, and I think the rate hovers around Rs 1800 to Rs 2000,” claimed Agnel Fernandes, a resident of Aldona.
“Going to Mopa by taxi is as expensive as taking a one-way flight to Mumbai. This is a bit ridiculous. And now that it is becoming evident that Dabolim airport will be out of bounds for civilians, the new Manohar Airport is going to be a costly affair for us Goans living in South Goa,” avers seaman Inacio Florence from Chinchinim.
“I was in Bangalore recently, and when I asked the hotel staff for a taxi to the hotel, I was told it would cost me Rs 1500 plus the toll tax. When I checked the rates of Ola and Uber, I realised that they were charging Rs 738, and I opted for the latter,” stated businessman Vijay Naik from Mapusa.
A rundown of taxi rates on clearcarrental.com reads Rs 20 per km for Tata Indica; Rs 21 for Tata Indigo, Swift Dzire and Toyota Etios; Rs 27 for Toyota Innova.
“Most of our clients don’t mind paying if the ride to the airport or from the airport is smooth. It is the bottlenecks created by traffic jams and accidents that are a hindrance. Traffic has eased now that the Zuari Bridge has been opened, but traffic snarls in Porvorim are causing problems,” stated Vinod Palyekar, a taxi driver from North Goa.
“We always charge the rates prescribed by the government and so the question of overcharging does not arise. People wanting to spoil the name of taxi drivers will use false rumours,” added Vinod.
With the Manohar International Airport in Mopa functional and rates of taxis fixed, a few initial bumps in terms of reactions are expected. But in time the bumps will become smooth just like the taxi rides.