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Shortage of prepaid taxis adds to passengers' woes

india Updated: Nov 16, 2010 00:02 IST
Faizan Haider
Faizan Haider
Hindustan Times
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If you thought battling the chaos at Terminal 3 of Indira Gandhi International Airport (IGIA) was an uphill task, gear up for some more trouble.

After making their way out of T3, harried passengers have to wait at least for an hour to book prepaid taxis. Reason: shortage of black and yellow taxis. The ill-preparedness of the airport agencies can be gauged by the fact that even after shifting three major domestic carriers — Air India, Jet Airways and Kingfisher — to T3, they haven't fully shifted the taxis from domestic terminal to T3, delaying passengers to reach their destination further.

Also, there is only one prepaid booth outside T3 due to which the passengers had to wait for 30 minutes to get the prepaid slip. "After spending one hour inside the terminal, the wait for prepaid taxi is a pain. Even to get a prepaid slip, one has to wait for 30 minutes in the queue. There were hundreds of passengers waiting to board the taxis and it was complete madness," said Shalini Dutta, a passenger, who had to go to Pitampura.

According to Airport Taxi Union, the passengers had to wait since not all taxis from domestic airport have moved to T3.

T3 used to handle 20,000 passengers every day before the shifting of domestic carriers. Now, it is handling more than 40,000 passengers. Thus, the demand for taxis has increased.

"We will move the taxis from T1 to T3 only when there is adequate parking space. For additional counters, we have requested the Delhi International Airport Limited (DIAL)," said Ashok Kumar, president of Airport Taxi Union. At T3, there are 1,200 prepaid black and yellow cabs which were brought here from T2 after the shifting of international airlines. After the shifting of domestic airlines just 200 more cabs have been shifted, a number that is clearly falling short.

"All cabs will be shifted by January only," Kumar said.

A DIAL spokesperson told the Hindustan Times: "Apart from one additional counter outside the terminal 3, there are three pre-paid black and yellow taxi counters that are operational inside the arrivals area of Terminal-3. Each of these counters are manned by two people each on 24X7 basis. More than 1300 black and yellow taxis are operating under the traffic police prepaid system for the convenience of the passengers."