Exorbitant taxi fares in Goa, Charges are equivalent to flight tickets

Has anyone traveled to Goa via the new airport in Mopa (North Goa)? Heard stories of atrocious cab charges (at government-mandated rates) as the airport is quite far away from the beaches (and the main city). A friend traveled but he had rented a car so the car was delivered at the Airport.

How a group of taxi operators supported by (and in turn supporting) local politicians can hold the entire tourism sector of a state like Goa hostage to their whims is going to be a case study someday for tourism-study/degree courses.

It’s been obvious for a long time that Goa has a public transport issue and the problem is the taxi drivers. The solution is pretty obvious- allow more competition and the normal app-based taxi aggregators and also run more local buses.

But the government depends on support from local politicians. In a state where assembly election victories can be with margins as low as 100 votes, the local politicians have no choice but to serve the interests of the taxi unions who vote for those who will allow them to continue their extortionate ways.

Goa tourism is going to have to realize that the costs and inconveniences associated with visiting the state are just increasing each year. Without a corresponding rise in the tourist experience, quite the opposite in fact. The resorts might have gotten fancier, but the beaches they face have gotten noisier, dirtier, and more polluted. Sooner or later people are going to realize that beach destinations in Karnataka, Kerala, Maharashtra, or even nearby SE-Asian countries are much better value for money. At least the family and higher-value tourists will go that way and Goa risks being left with the drunken-all-male-groups and casino tourists.

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We had the shock of our lives last month when we went to Goa for a short vacation. Luckily we drove down from Bangalore. The first evening we decided to take a taxi since we were going out for a party where alcohol was going to be involved. We walked close to a km to find someone to take us to our destination. We ended up shelling out 1200 bucks for a 6km drive.

The way back was a bigger nightmare as it was quite late in the night (around 1am) with nobody willing to take us back to our hotel. Regretted not taking our car. Finally, around 1:35 am we found someone who agreed to drop us back and we happily paid him 2000, though he asked for 1800. Being from the sunny state of Goa itself, I am terribly ashamed of our public transportation system and what’s even more shameful is that we call ourselves a tourist-friendly state.

Exorbitant taxi fares in Goa
Exorbitant taxi fares in Goa

Goa does have a taxi service which is crude but similar to the OLA and Uber services we call it “Goa Miles” the app is available on your respective app store. I sincerely suggest you use the same when you land in Goa. It isn’t exactly cheaper but much better than getting exorbitantly fleeced so much where’d you wish you never came here again.

Secondly, for those who wish to travel to the quieter area of Goa please book tickets to Dabolim Airport, Goa also known as GOI so that you are closer towards south Goa. The rest who like to party and wish to travel up north can stick to the new airport – MOPA also known as GOX. Unless the taxi union and the Government realise the self-harm their stubborn attitude is causing them, the tourist-friendly tag is going to be omitted real soon from Goa.

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P.S. Saw many replies from fellow bhpians who were stranded in Goa for the same issue. Next time please feel free to DM me so that I can share my contact for any local help/advice you guys need in Goa. Happy to help. Goa is one of the least value-for-money destinations in India and the mafia attitude of taxi drivers makes it worse. Even though my friends/wife keep pushing me for Goa, I just prefer flying out to Thailand or other South East Asian countries and it still turns out the nearly same cost and a much better experience. Goa is a no go(a) for me.

Source : bhp