The benefits and pitfalls of Cabs in Delhi

by admin on May 10, 2011

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Delhi Traffic Jam

A typical Delhi Traffic Jam - Pic by Lingaraj G J

Anyone who has been Delhi knows that if there is one thing that’s an absolute b***h, it’s the traffic. A combination of insanity, maniacal driving skills, disregard toward traffic rules, crazy call centre drivers and corrupt cops all conspire to make Delhi the classical traffic nightmare. Driving in Delhi is guaranteed to give you a plethora of mini heart attacks per kilometer.

And the story doesn’t end just there. With almost 1000 cars being added to Delhi’s already diminishing road infrastructure, the traffic chaos doesn’t look like going anywhere anytime soon. Another secondary problem is the unavailability of parking which is constant nuisance. It’s so bad that you might actually reach a destination in a certain time and then spend the same amount of time to park your already tired car. Spiraling fuel costs add to commuter woes and make you think that is a personal car might not be a great idea after all.

So what are the options in case you want to get around and visit famous places in Delhi? Well you can be environmentally friendly (and somewhat pocket friendly) and always switch to public transportation systems like the bus, metro or auto rickshaws. However each one of those modes of transport brings with them a set of new of problems. The bus services, although greatly improved, remains a bit of a mess since they are not always on time, are tremendously crowded and carry the risk of pickpockets and thieves.

Auto rickshaws are a decent mode of transport but often overcharge since they know they can get away with it. Also they are not air-conditioned. So considering Delhi’s heat, you might reach your destination looking like a pretzel and stinking like an onion.

The Delhi Metro

Sublime Delhi Metro - Pic by varunshiv

The Delhi Metro makes a great case as a public mode of transport and has caused many people to ditch their cars (for some part of the distance); with its squeaky clean stations and trains, comfortable A/C travel and easy to use system, it has become a blessing as well as a symbol of progress for Delhi. However, since the Delhi metro is such a popular mode of transport, my tip would be to use the metro in non peak hours. Also a slight downer of using the Metro is that its coverage is not as extensive as I would like.

Advantages of Renting a Cab Service

Point is all said and done, we all want a smooth hassle free and comfortable commute especially if you are visiting Delhi and want to experience its tourist destinations, the best compromise is availing of a cab service in Delhi. Don’t believe me? Then keep reading to know the advantages of renting a cab in Delhi

  1. Toyota Innova Car Rental

    Rent an Innova - Pic by thienzieyung

    Affordable price and good value for money – although the rates for a cab service in Delhi can fluctuate a bit, a full day rental of a Toyota Innova will cost you Rs 1400($31) for a full day rental. Also you get a range of 80 km for the full day and obviously the chauffer and fuel is included in the cost. A good cab service in Delhi will generally bundle in extra features like in-car munchies, newspapers, charger for your gadgets etc. When viewed as an overall package, it seems like a pretty sweet deal.

  2. Concentrate on enjoying and not driving – driving a car in Delhi is a big ask (as we have already pointed out). A chauffer driven car allows you to concentrate on letting loose and enjoying the sights and sounds Delhi has to offer. It also absolves you of having to worry about the getting to your destination since a good cab service in Delhi will knowledgeable drivers with in-car GPS systems.
  3. Flexible Tour Options – Want to visit tourist places near and in Delhi on your own terms? With a car rental, that’s absolutely possible. You can check out tourist destinations as you please and don’t have to worry about being hassled by over aggressive tour operators or sticking to a schedule. So if you hire a cab in Delhi, you can visit and tour destinations at your own ease and time.
  4. Privacy – unlike other modes of transport, a car rental can give you much needed privacy that will be missing in other modes of transportation like the metro and the bus.
  5. No parking problems – as opposed to travelling in your own car, taking a cab service in Delhi, gives you the comfort and flexibility of being dropped off right at your destination’s doorstep so that you don’t have to make a laborious search for parking and then undertake a long walk to reach your destination.
  6. A/c comfort – with Delhi’s scorching heat of around 40 degree Celsius, stepping out even for a minute might make you look like a fried onion. An A/C car rental provides you with some much needed relief from the killer Delhi heat. Also you don’t get exposed to the dust, grime and pollution and arrive at your destination looking as fresh as a daisy.
  7. Wide model Range – From the humble Indica to the a lavish Merc, there is a car to suit every need and of course your pocket. With such a variety and price range, it’s not that hard to strike a balance between your needs and your wallet. My personal favorite though is the Toyota Innova since is really comfy, can swallow up around 7 people and their luggage in comfort and has a very chilly A/C (a must in Delhi).

Pitfalls of Renting a Car

However, as with everything, there are a few flies in the ointment; Delhi being popular on the tourist map has led to a mushrooming of cab and car rental services in Delhi. Some of them can be unscrupulous and downright conniving. That’s why it’s important to check out a few things before you rent a car

  1. Punctuality - I don’t know about you but I am a sucker for punctuality. I hate being late for anything. There have been incidents where a person has booked a cab at a certain time and the cab showed up late by 30 minutes or even an hour. If your car rental is a fly by night operator, this could happen to you too.
  2. Trustworthy Driver – this is big thing that people often overlook. Since when renting a car you will be depending on the driver, it’s important to know if your driver can be trustworthy (since you might be leaving valuables in the car). Good car rental companies always perform due diligence and verify their driver. But it’s a good idea to check anyway. After all can’t be too careful can we?
  3. In car GPS – even though you expect the driver of your cab to know Delhi like the back of his hand, it humanely possible that the chap might actually not know a location. However drifting from one place to another and asking strangers for directions might put you on a wild goose chase and an unscrupulous cab service might even overcharge you. Do check if your rental has a GPS which makes it easy for the driver to just key in your destination and reach the place on time and not in the next century.
  4. Dirty Car rental? No thanks! – Another major irritant is when a car rental company sends you a dirty, beaten down car as your ride for the day. Don’t know about you but I wouldn’t want to be caught dead in a car like that. After all even a rental car is a reflection of the kind of person you are. Also when you alight from a dirty and beaten up banger, it can’t do your personal image a whole deal of good can it? So always insist on a clean car and any cab service in Delhi that doesn’t oblige,  doesn’t deserve your business anyway

Therefore to sum it up, renting a car does open up a whole new bag of options. A cab service gives you flexibility, freedom and of course the ability to have a cab that picks you up( even from the airport) , drop you to wherever you want to go and even ferry you across town or to popular tourist destinations near Delhi. Only thing is choosing the right cab service in Delhi for which we have given you some super tips. So don’t wait and book a cab today!

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