ABU DHABI // Residents of the capital can now take a “boat taxi” to Yas Island and back, and for some areas, the Jalboot return trip is both cheapest and fastest option to Yas Marina.
As of February 1, Jalboot, a company that provides ferry services around Abu Dhabi, will begin running routes taking people from along Al Raha Beach and Bandar to Yas Marina.
The water taxi will be an extra mode of transport for residents of Raha Beach – including Al Muneera, Al Bandar and Al Zeina – heading to Yas Marina and Yas Links, in addition to other island locations in the future.
The journey takes approximately 15 minutes and costs Dh25 for a round trip or Dh15 for one way. During the pilot period, before the schedule is announced on February 14, two boats will be shuttling 10 residents at a time leaving every thirty minutes from noon until 6pm.
“We want it to be a practical option for people to be using this service, we also want to point out that while the price is competitive, you are also getting the benefit of a relaxing boat trip,” said Tom Rebollini, head of finance.
The option could become tempting for residents and tourists alike as events like the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix or concerts at Yas draw thousands of people with traffic to match.
During the two-week pilot stage beginning on February 1, Jalboot wants residents to try out the service and fill out a survey online to give the company a better idea of when the ferry timings should be.
The company runs a service that takes residents around Abu Dhabi Island on a high-speed boat, allowing people to take a tour of Abu Dhabi Island and stop at several coastal locations.
With the addition of the Yas ferry shuttle, a rider can in practice take the Jalboot service from Etihad Towers all the way to Yas Island.
“We aren’t trying to compete with taxis for several of the routes, but we are trying to provide an experience, where people can relax and make part of the journey fun,” said Rob Chinman, head of sales.
Mohammed Al Zaabi, chief executive of Miral, which has developed many of the properties in Yas, said the service will provide more access to the island and give the city a more integrated feel with options for transportation.
This service is the latest visitor-friendly component to be added to Yas Island’s scaled up transportation offering, which already includes the new Yas Express shuttle service and the ADCB Bikeshare network powered by Cyacle.