‘Goa Taxi’ app to be launched on Dec 19


The State government will make yet another bid to bring Goa’s chaotic taxi service sector, crucial to its tourism market, under some level of regulation by introducing a taxi aggregator service on December 19.

Transport Minister Mauvin Godinho said on Wednesday that the taxi aggregator app ‘Goa Taxi’ will be jointly launched by the Tourism and Transport Departments and that the State-owned Goa Electronics Limited (GEL) will operate it.

In a bid to get the various taxi associations on board, Godinho said, members of all seven associations will be formally asked to join the service.

Earlier on Tuesday officials of both the tourism and transport departments deliberated on ironing out the finer details of the app. Godinho and Tourism Minister Rohan Khaunte were part of the meeting which discussed and finalised the finer details of the service.

“All seven taxi associations in Goa will be asked to join the app which will be in the hands of the taxi business operators,” Godinho said, adding that they will be running the service.

He also said, that the Transport department will be the owner of the taxi aggregator app and profits made will be ploughed back to deliver benefits of welfare schemes to the taxi operators who are members of the service.

Meanwhile Khaunte said, it is crucial that the experiment succeeds as Goa is competing with other destinations for tourist footfalls.

“We have to ensure that people visiting Goa carry proper experiences with them back,” he said, adding that even locals will benefit from the service.

He further said that it will be an aggregator not only for tourists but  also for the local public which will be used to transit from point to  point.

“Taxi has a very important role to play as far as the tourism  sector is concerned. When we get mails from tourists that they are  charged Rs 4,500 from Baga to Candolim, how do we face it,” he asked.

Over the last two to three years, attempts to introduce app based taxi services in the State have faced stiff resistence from Goa’s taxi operators.

One such service Goa Miles introduced by a private company with support from the State-owned Goa Tourism Development Corporation (GTDC) has faced stiff opposition from local taxi operators with the latter holding several protests against it and also resorting to sporadic cases of violence against operators who have joined the app.

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