Thursday, March 26, 2009

Water taxi rates


Customs House on an old postcard

Many of our guests use water taxis to ferry them across the Grand Harbour to the three cities (Vittoriosa, Senglea and Cospicua). The pick up points - Custom House and the Fisheries - are only a mere 5 to 10 minute walk from Valletta G-House and the journey is short and pleasant. The fortifications look even better down at sea too. The Malta Times today reports on a new law regulating the rates charged for use of the water taxi service.

Soon you should be able to catch a water taxi from, say, Sliema to Valletta and it should not cost you more than €5 for two.
The maximum fares the taxis will be able to charge are laid down in a new law expected to be announced today. The law forms part of the promised public transport reform, launched in July.

The island has been divided in six zones and trips from one zone to a neighbouring one will cost €15 for two passengers and €7.50 for each additional passenger.

The fare is €5 for a trip in the same port, for up to two passengers, with an extra €2.50 for each additional passenger. Trips to other zones will cost €40 for up to two passengers and €10 for each additional passenger. Tours around the island will cost a maximum €40 per hour for two passengers and an extra €10 per passenger or hour.

The law, backdated to March 1, speaks of licensed boats to ferry passengers from one point to another. Operators and the crew need a licence issued by the Malta Maritime Authority.

Masters are prohibited from calling or pestering anyone to use the water taxi or employ any person to do so. They have to wear a white shirt, a white Bermuda or long trousers, white socks and closed shoes. They must also issue a receipt after the trip and every receipt must include the date, the amount paid, the origin and the destination of the trip.

The Transport Ministry is today expected to officially announce the legislation for water taxis and ferries and plans for the vertical lift connecting Valletta Waterfront with the Upper Barrakka.

Water taxi services: t. 2180 6921 | m. 9924 7447
Traditional Maltese Dghajsa Tours: m. 7988 5969

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