TAXIS ON BOARD
THE taxi industry has thrown its weight behind the World Cup transport plan.
Yesterday its representatives said they were "delighted and satisfied" with the inter-provincial road transport service for the World Cup, launched by Transport Minister Sbu Ndebele in Boksburg, Ekurhuleni.
Hundreds of taxis and buses will be used in all host cities to transport fans to the nine World Cup stadiums across the country.
"In Rustenburg alone 600 taxis will ferry fans to the stadiums," South African National Taxi Council general secretary Phillip Taaibosch said.
"The taxi industry is known for always complaining. That is history, we are going to participate fully, there will be no stand-off between us and government. We are happy," Santaco president Jabulani Mthembu said.
He said the ticketing system that will be used in transportation during the World Cup was a launch pad, and that it will be implemented across the country.
A taxi ride from Johannesburg to Royal Bafokeng Stadium in Rustenburg will cost R120 one way, while a trip to Bloemfontein from Johannesburg will be charged at R290.
Tickets can be purchased at ticketing outlets, including Computicket, Checkers and Strictly-Ticket, and commuters will be given colour coordinated armbands at the stadiums.
A 24-hour transport call centre, based in Midrand, has been established for fans to maximise the use of the transport service.
Fans can call 011-256-1000 to get in touch with operators or visit www.2010findyourway.co.za.
Host cities will regularly upload and update information on the website.
An inter-city joint operations centre has also been established and will operate from 7am to 7pm.
Dennis Hlatshwayo, a taxi driver, said he was happy and looked forward to transporting fans.
"The tournament might never come back to South Africa in my lifetime. This is a privilege and I will treasure the memories," he said.
Ndebele said it was all systems go with transport readiness for the World Cup, and urged fans to park their vehicles and use designated public transport.
He said government had invested more than R40billion to ensure that the tournament was first class and efficient.