Cab in India
India is a mysterious country, which many travelers nicknamed – a separate continent, where separately excites the imagination of the local cab.
Such a number of unique and unusual sights can hardly be seen anywhere, so there are always a lot of tourists and vacationers. But the question arises: how to get to the next attraction? To help you come to public transport, represented by buses and cabs. A lot of national means of transportation: motor rickshaws and bicycle rickshaws.
Bicycle rickshaws are the cheapest type of transport, which are large baby carriages with pedals. They are not very comfortable, but ideal for leisurely sightseeing tours and carrying large luggage. Motor rickshaws are noted for their high speed. Behind this name hide usual scooters with covered seats. They accommodate up to five people. This type of transport is much more comfortable and faster, but also more dangerous than others. It has no seat belts and no doors.
Among tourists in India are popular autorickshaws, which take customers over short distances, such as from the metro station to the hotel or to the local bazaar. Today, the authorities are planning to replace autorickshaws with motorcycles.
Of all Indian transport, cabs are considered the safest and most convenient.
Cabs and cab drivers in India
In India there are two types of cabs: public and private. With this the country is not at all different from others.
Public cabs are easily recognized by the dark green shade of the car. Each car is equipped with a meter, but there are always special rates and rates for holidaymakers. To call a cab, just call one of the services. If you are at the airport, you should get out of the building, as you will immediately be surrounded by drivers with offers to take you anywhere in the city.
Private cabs are a little different. The cars here are bright yellow. Most of them are Ambassadors or jeeps. If you are lucky, you can meet rare models. Jeep is suitable for large companies, as it can accommodate up to seven passengers: two in front and five on the passenger seats.
For vacationers in India have created their own tourist cabs in white. You can book them directly to the hotel and travel from there. You recognize such a cab at once, by the characteristic inscription and the blue stripe. For tourist cab cars Tata or jeeps are used.
According to statistics, mostly use the vehicles of the Ambassador or Tata, which can accommodate only a few people. The Ambassador produces vehicles since the middle of the last century, and its cars are very similar to Moskvich. This transport has a meter and even a calculator that translates the result into rupees, the national money. The Ambassador can accommodate up to 5 persons for short distances, but if the trip promises to be long, the capacity is reduced to three passengers. This is due to the fact that special comfort is required for long distances.
For large companies is ideal for a jeep with a minimum capacity of five people. The trip will cost more, but on the other hand, the overpayment is justified by safety and comfort throughout the route.
It is not uncommon to see shred-taxis in the cities. They are huge jeeps, which are the best way to go to the mountains or other inaccessible areas. The jeep accommodates up to 13 people. There is no need to worry about luggage, as the shred-taxi carries it on the roof. The jeep departs from the starting point as it is filled.
You will hardly find any fixed prices in India. Only in public cabs is the price stable. At the beginning of the journey the tourist will be given a check, which he will pay at the end of the trip. But you should be prepared for an attack of drivers demanding tips.
In general, all cabs are required by law to be metered, but drivers generally work by arrangement. That’s why the final price may be 1.5 times higher than usual. But no one has forbidden haggling. Haggling can knock more than half the price of the fare.
Any tourist can ask the driver for a copy of all rates and fares in force today, because sometimes the meter readings are very different from the actual prices.
When choosing a cab, it is worth paying attention to the service you will be provided. The cost of the trip directly depends on it. For example, 8 kilometers in a car with air conditioning should cost up to 450 rupees.
Autorickshaws and other national transport is also charged at fixed rates. There are not always meters here, but if one is installed, make sure the driver turns it on at the beginning of the journey, not before.
What is the best way to travel in Goa?
What is the safest and most convenient mode of transportation to take in Goa?
You can move around Goa in several ways. The most common way is to take a cab. When taking a cab, you should take into account one peculiarity: cabs in Goa do not have meters and the cost must be negotiated before the trip. If you do not do this, then you have to pay the amount indicated by the cab driver. Be sure to negotiate before you board. The next mode of transportation is a rickshaw which can be based on a bicycle in the old fashioned way or on a motorcycle or moped in the modern way. In order not to depend on any transport, you can independently rent a moped or a bike. The price will depend on the office, the power and condition of the rented vehicle, but the rental price is not great. Rent a car is not a suitable option, as the European tourist is very difficult to adapt to the intensive traffic and rental will require leaving a large sum as a deposit. Do not exclude such a mode of transport as buses. Talking about how Goa has no buses is nothing more than a myth, there is a bus in Goa, and it is a very cheap mode of transport, by our standards, it costs a penny. Buses in Goa are small and painted in different colors and the windows have bars that serve as protection from the monkeys. Their route is laid out along the tourist areas, where the bus stops at the right places, as requested by the tourists. Sometimes the payment is collected by a special person, sometimes the money must be given to the driver. Be sure to carry small change, or you may not get change from a large bill. A minus of this transport is that the speed is low and there is no air conditioning. If you are in favor of a healthy lifestyle, you can rent a bicycle (if you do not need to travel long distances). Choose your bike very carefully, because most of them are not in the best condition, and the roads in Goa are not European, and sometimes not even of Russian quality.
I had a minor traffic accident. This said, I want to point out that I drive slowly and carefully. So, I’m driving and I see right in front of me a car standing in my lane, while to get around him in my lane, I have only half a meter, and all, further on the other side. I have to slow down to 20 kilometers per hour, I continue driving and try to carefully avoid this car as suddenly this car begins to move, with no signal that the driver is going to start moving, no hint, not even turned on the turn signal. As a result, I hit the bumper of the car and start driving with it, I increase the speed and the bumper from the car almost comes off. I can see that the bumper is already 25 centimeters away and is dangling, barely stopped with the driver making every effort to ensure that the bumper did not absolutely fall off.
I did not want to prove that I was right, after all in another country and all that, so when the driver honked my horn, I approached from the other side of the car, from the driver’s side. I was lucky, at first I could see that the driver was ready to start an argument, but I was ahead of him and apologized in English, he said something in his language and noticing that I did not understand his arguments, just turned around and left. That’s how lucky I was. This story is instructive, you should always know that when overtaking in Goa you should always signal. Even if it seems that the car broke down, or something else always hoot, my story has fully taught me-taught. By the way, I always used to beep when overtaking, and here I thought the car is still broken, where he was moving something, so I got caught. By the way beeping is their national Indian way of entertainment, everybody uses that kind of signal everywhere and in any circumstances. It is like communication between traffic participants on the road. Besides overtaking they signal to warn about approaching a turn, just to say hello or to thank each other for something. Another thing you need to understand that your signal will not make a special furor, and sometimes it can even ignore, it is better to honk long and loud, to be noticed. Stupid to honk with the hope that the road will give way to another bike, a pedestrian also will not move with the sound signal, and the cattle will not go anywhere. If we talk about the roads themselves, the bulk of the roads in Goa are narrow and untended, but there are also quite decent and wide, ride on which a pleasure.
For those who are afraid of bikes, mopeds and scooters some practical advice, guidance and dispelling the fears. Riding these vehicles is easy and simple enough, even easier than on a bicycle. If you know how to ride a bike, but for sure you know how to, then this transport master a couple of minutes. In this case, of course the difference is palpable, and controls are different, but still. Try to make your first trips inside villages or on roads with little traffic. But it is important to choose the right village; there are some which have a lot of traffic, for example: Calangute, Baga and Candolim.
Riding controls on a scooter are simple, there is only a throttle grip, which has no gear shift, as well as the front and rear brakes – two levers are adapted for them. Well, you need to start to understand and to explain yourself in what direction to twist the throttle lever when you want to slow down or to make a stop. A very common mistake is to make a mistake with the throttle, and when you stop, you twist the lever all the way out instead of letting go of the gas, so the consequences can be sad. Next, you should remember the location of the rear and front brakes. In most cases, you have to use the rear brake, this is due to the specific road surfaces, debris and dust on the asphalt.
In unskilled hands it is better to try not to use the front brake, although it is much more effective than the rear.If you need fast braking at first use the rear brake and only with time add the front brake. Brake only in a straight line. If during braking, especially if it is urgent you will twist a rudder in different directions, it will not end well. Attention, accuracy and obeying speed limits are the pledge of success and safety for a beginner. Even if it seems that you are already able to drive not more than 30-40 km per hour and closer to the road. About the use of signals – look at the circumstances under which and how to signal the local and do the same. If you do not know how, or have not learned how to ride a scooter, do not dare to sit on a motorcycle, it is very dangerous. That’s all the main features and recommendations from me.
Most tourists prefer to travel around Goa by cab, the local population prefers mopeds and motorcycles. And as soon as they fit on a moped with the whole family and even with all their gadgets is something to see. As they say right extreme show arrange, after watching which tourists and pay attention to the cab. But there are nuances, which you need to know. In Goa there are two types of cabs without air conditioning and with the presence of it. As a rule the cab with comfortable conditions of movement, which include air conditioning belong to any of the hotels, so keep in mind that taking a cab you will have to pay dearly in two directions, as well as a fixed rate, which must be paid at the reception at the hotel.
Of course for some people this may be quite convenient, because wherever you go the car will be waiting for you at any point, as well as return to the hotel. As a rule, only the mileage is counted, and no money is charged for downtime. If you want to go one way, then you should not ask for help at the hotel, feel free to go out and get a cab. There are enough of them, but the economy cab does not have such comfortable conditions and there is no air conditioning. You can bargain with the owners of such cabs and get a decent discount. The advantage is that you ride in the air and you can smoke right in the cabin of the cab.
As a rule cabs are taken for trips to a cafe, restaurant or for a trip to North Goa. Cab drivers can sometimes recommend good places with reasonable prices and delicious food. To go shopping with a cab driver is not very interesting, first of all the first store where he will bring you will be the one where he gets paid a percentage for customers, so dictate your conditions of movement, especially when traveling in the South Goa. Panjim is the capital of the state and the place for serious shopaholics, a lot of stores are located on the main street of the city, here you can buy excellent jewelry and gems in certified stores. If you are interested in thrifty shopping, I can recommend a place where the locals do their shopping this is the town of Margao, located in South Goa.
It is necessary to go to North Goa only with a cab driver, because they go there mainly at night to visit the night market or a disco, sometimes they combine these two activities, as they say pleasant with useful. If you take a cab from the hotel, then the cost of the trip to North Goa, considering the example from the hotel Park Hyatt, will be about 2500 rupees per car, the time of an hour ride. If you want to save on transportation go to Central Goa. This is the closest part of the state to go on excursions, as well as shopping and evening entertainment.
There are hotels located far from all infrastructure, such as the Grand Intercontinental, to North Goa it will take about two hours, the airport is located in 1.5 hours drive, the nearest town called Margao – fifty minutes. The hotel itself is located in the far south.
More active and adventurous tourists or seasoned travelers prefer to ride as locals on scooters and motorcycles. And they say that without them in Goa, as without their own legs. You can’t go far on foot for sightseeing. By the way the real travelers assert that you won’t taste all the pleasures of Goa only with the help of cab, because the cab driver will take you either by beaten paths, or by his favorite ones. Not to mention freedom of movement, you can go anywhere and anytime you want on a scooter.
In order to rent a scooter it is necessary as well as with the cab to know the basic nuances. The cost of renting ranges from 150 to 260 rupees a day, and it is more profitable to take for a longer period, the price is lower. Take not the newest scooters, just some sellers at the expense of their services to make you choose their means of transportation. Why should not you take a brand new scooter, but it’s simple, the old one will not be noticeable any scratch, except of course the huge, but the new one will give out all the details.
Rental conditions are different for different areas of Goa. An example is trying to take a scooter without collateral, which acted as my passport, the action took place in Mandrem, of course I did not give my passport, and the scooter was not taken. I offered a photocopy of my passport – they didn’t want it. I would not advise to give the original documents to strangers and strangers, and even more so in their country (and in their own country should not), so we went downtown, where we persuaded a day for 150 rupees, gave only a photocopy of passport, took two scooters for a week period.
We stayed in Calangute and we were lucky to get the scooters without documents. I have not seen such trust for a long time, I hope no one will abuse it and our tourists will be given such an opportunity. There were cases when they refused to give transport because of the lack of rights with the specified category.
I was getting my license and I didn’t think to get a special category A for driving scooters. Although about the license and their availability, I can say that here they are not needed in general cases. Because it’s a local business and no one will limit themselves here, they will not give tourists go around the corner and rent from their neighbors. Of course in the evening the police are in Siolim, behind the bridge, they can usually stop and demand to see your license, but many of them just do not lead to it. We have acquaintances when they stop them begin to reduce speed, and when they come closer – slow down sharply, I do not recommend doing that, though. That’s it, although my husband and I did not do that, just maybe because we were lucky and we were not stopped. But if you still have a situation that you do not have the right category, and stopped the police do not worry – this is the second type of business in Goa (not official course) – will take about 500 rupees, but you can give 200, and even less, and all will be happy, and you that “saved money” and the police that at least something podzalivali. My other friends once proved that the category B indicated in the license is the category that allows you to travel on a scooter and bike. Sometimes it happens that make a photocopy of someone else’s license and pass it off as their own, of course the main thing is some resemblance to the photo in the fake license. By the way a friend who did not stop to risk getting a bamboo stick on the back or head, it happens that the injuries are quite serious, it is better not to experience such adrenaline.
When renting a scooter by the way check its technical condition, as well as for visible cracks, chips and other damages, it is better to immediately point them to the owner, than later to pay for not your sins. At the return is usually a very good inspection of the vehicle, and any damage can be blamed on your shoulders. But if something happens and your bike is damaged, there are a lot of repair shops around and they fix it fast and cheap.
Also, when you drive on the track required to wear a helmet, but again, practice has shown that this do units. During our trip no one stopped us for this reason. Although night travel on a scooter we have not carried out, so at night I can not say. After all, at night the police are on all roads between towns and they let passers-by one by one, and inspect them from head to toe.
In Goa, the traffic is left-handed, very quickly by the way you rearrange. You just have to check with your left hand to see if you are changing lanes the right way and going the wrong way. A couple of days and you’re on automatic as well as a local on the roads. The rules are spelled out here somehow incomprehensible to me and in my opinion wrong, and most importantly, no one here and they do not follow them, if you put it simply, everyone is riding like a bicycle, that is, who feels more comfortable. Turn signals are either not turned on at all or they are always on, just because the motorist forgot to turn them off at the right time.
Be prepared for the fact that you can jump out at the meeting of a bike or car, overtaking another vehicle. But the road will not stretch, it is not rubber, so you should be careful. I recommend trying to keep to the side of the road. As I wrote above, the locals ride with their families and with a lot of things, and are not afraid of anything and do not follow the rules. About helmet, by the way they have all the same unique, according to local rules of the main thing that was on the driver, and the rest somehow gets something happens, not important.
On the roads here, you need to be super careful driver, and the same on attentiveness, because there are really a lot of accidents. Not for nothing is India in first place for the number of accidents in the world. Together with my husband, we saw more than one or two traffic accidents, we drove by and watched two overturned trucks, a crashed motorcycle hit a car, and once saw a jeep that went off the road and sat on its belly.
Of course, we all try by all means to drive carefully, and yet I was one not very nice accident.
India is a country where the terms ‘safe’ and ‘comfortable’ are often not compatible at all! In particular, what is the best way to get around Goa? The most convenient – on a rented scooter. But is it safer? I don’t think so. On the other hand, you won’t get much by cab (which itself sounds imposing) – the prices are high, and about safety again, I’m not sure. Indian cab drivers drive like hell, and oncoming traffic, and whatever. So, if you want to not just sit on the beach, but also to see the surrounding area, rent a scooter – and then, slowly. =))) And don’t forget to honk every minute, everybody does it there (I’m serious)!
I wouldn’t recommend renting a scooter if you don’t ride it at home. The roads there aren’t that horrible, but the rules only exist in theory, and in practice people brake sharply when they see a cow on the road, and don’t do that at all when a person is crossing. The most comfortable is to negotiate with a cab driver. They will take you, wait as long as necessary, and take you back in comfort.