More stops added to Abu Dhabi ferry service
Jalboot, Abu Dhabi’s water “bus” has added two more stops to its route: Al Bandar (near Yas Island) and Hilton Hotel on the Corniche. While the Al Bandar stop is expected to be used more by passengers needing public transport, the Hilton Corniche, a stop only for the evening schedule, has more appeal for tourists cruising around the city.
The half a year old ferry service, providing more scenic and less congested transportation around Abu Dhabi Island and its surroundings, now stops at five key locations.
“We are constantly looking for ways to add further value to the existing service and to expand our reach further afield,” said Mohammed Roestali, general manager of Jalboot.
The two daytime schedules, starting from 10 am and then 3 pm, the stops include Abu Dhabi Mall (departure stop), Etihad Towers, Fairmont Bab al Bahr, Al Bandar, Yas Marina and back to Abu Dhabi Mall, while the evening, 7.30 pm cruise, also depart and return to Abu Dhabi Mall, cruising along the Corniche with a stop at Hilton Hotel.
With the Al Bandar stop added, the ferry round trip, covering over 100 kilometres of waterways, is now three hours, while the evening cruise is two hours.
“Al Bandar is a very popular waterfront residential development and through its quality hospitality offering is increasingly becoming a sought-after call for tourists,” mentioned Roestali.
Jalboot Marine Network LLC (Jalboot), which operates Abu Dhabi’s only private scheduled passenger ferry service was launched in October 2015, after two years of planning and preparations.
Its first ferry was named after the largest natural pearls, Al Dana, which is one of the most luxurious water “buses” out there. The German designed ferry has 40 leather passenger seats, glass walls from top to bottom to take in the full view of the scenic Abu Dhabi coastline and a fully air-condition cabin.
Jalboot boats are actually modern catamarans, running on jet ski type of engines – no propellers – that are less disturbing to marine life. They are capable of reaching a speed of 30 knots, but don’t usually go beyond 25 knots.
One stop tickets start from Dh 40 (adult) when booked in advance or Dh 45 for same day purchase. Different packages are available for families and returned tickets.
As promised when launched last year, Jalboot is also looking at expanding its services, most probably between Abu Dhabi and Dubai. This is one of the reasons the company is participating in Dubai International Boat Show on March 1-5, where it will be looking for partnership opportunities.
Other future plans include a stop on Saadiyat Island, when the Louvre Museum will eventually open.