Dubai Metro… a flop?

After 5 months of service, did the Dh28 billion (75% above the original estimates), one of the most advanced, longest automated driverless WiFi-enabled train system live up to the initial hype and fanfare?
The world’s newest & most advanced metro aimed to join the league of megacities around the world, to ease the traffic problem, and to reduce road congestion and distances between key locations… Beyond its posh & mesmerizing design, did it meet these goals?
On the positive side, the metro fare is affordable, and the surrounding of the metro stations (mainly malls) will flourish…
On the other hand, the researchers and experts from around the world who have been working on the project since 1990, missed a key issue: that last mile connecting people from and to the stations:
Long walks in the desert heat is not the greatest ideas,
the 300 taxis assigned to support Dubai Metro network charge the regular fare (wasn’t the metro supposed to reduce the number of cars?),
and busses do not allow passengers that do not have a pre-paid card.
Here is the personal experience of a (non-local) resident:
Today was my 1st experience with the infamous Dubai metro, I must admit, I found the metro ride experience quite nice and pleasant, getting to see Dubai from a new elevated angle of dubai, and enjoying the comfort of the seat of this modern multi-Billion $ technology.
But, as much as i liked the smooth ride of the metro, as much as I hated the experience of the journey surrounding the ride.
Here is the biiig problem:
to go to the metro, u have to take the taxi (how silly is that), or the bus, and taxi charges at least 10AED.
Add to this the 1 way metro fare 6AED. Unless you want to get off to one of the malls connected to a metro station, you will need to take another taxi, that’s another 10 AED at least. so that’s a total of 26 AED 1 way. Double this rate if you want to go back to where you initially left off, so that’s 52AED, as the least minimum. I paid today 62 AED to go to Deira by Metro, instead of just 12 AED.
Now consider you are like me, you rarely ever use Dubai public transportation or more commonly known as the bus.
If you happened to be close to a bus station and decided to just hop on the bus to go to a metro station, instead of riding a taxi, like i tried to do today, well you can’t!! you get literally kicked out by the bus driver who tells you you cant pay in cash (like you would normally pay in any civilized city), you have to go to a shop, buy a bus card and use it to pay on the bus. How inconvenient is this bus system?
How inconvenient this whole metro system is, yes it’s a great ultra-modern technology, but then it defeats the whole purpose of a quick, convenient, cheap ride. No wonder why not many people take the metro and why so many still enjoy going around in their cars.
Have you used the metro in Dubai?
How did you like it?

1 Response so far »

  1. 1

    Jad Aoun said,

    I have to agree. Had it not been that my house is about 5 minutes away from a station, I would have never used it.

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