With Doha Metro Red Line South getting an excellent response from the public, several ‘regular’ passengers have shared some suggestions that they feel would help make every ride a one-of-its-kind experience. “I think there should be pivoted grab handles on the overhead horizontal bars, which would allow short people like me to hold on to when standing,” said Krishna, an Asian expatriate who was with a group of friends.
He told 'Gulf Times' that in some cases, especially during peak hours, he has to stand and offer his seat to older people, people with disabilities (PWDs), or to pregnant mothers on board.
Krishna added that they usually see these grab handles in most of the metro trains of major cities in different regions such as Asia, Europe, Australia and the US. “Vertical bars on the train can be lowered or, if not, more can be added, which can be reached by shorter individuals. This is just a suggestion, but generally Doha Metro is amazing and doing a great service to all of us,” he stressed.
The first phase of the Red Line covers 13 of its 18 stations, including Al Qassar, DECC, QIC West Bay, Corniche, Al Bidda (Interchange station), Msheireb (Interchange station), Al Doha Al Jadeda, Umm Ghuwailina, Al Matar Al Qadeem, Oqba Ibn Nafie, Free Zone, Ras Bu Fontas and Al Wakra.
This line will soon open other stations such as Katara, Legtaifiya, Qatar University and Lusail. Another passenger, a Filipino expatriate in Doha who also visited many countries in Europe and Southeast Asia, suggested ‘coloured marking’ on the floor (entrance/exit doors) at metro stations where passengers must stand without blocking those who are exiting the train. He noted that these markings and other permanent or digital signage at each station help a lot in informing and educating the public, especially first timers, on the proper way of riding metro trains.
A number of passengers also noticed that their co-passengers were not aware that eating inside the train is prohibited, leaving the couch or the floor with some leftover food such as potato chips. “I saw small icons being flashed on the digital screen that food is not allowed inside the train but the mother who was feeding her daughter was seemingly not aware of it, or maybe, was just ignoring it,” said a passenger.
“I think that if these important restrictions will be announced (voice over) at every station and on the train, apart from the signage, I believe it will remind people not to do it,” she said.
While carriages have dedicated spaces for PWDs and senior citizens, she urged passengers to give way or offer their seats to them, including pregnant women and those carrying babies, as well as young children. “We should keep in mind that these people should be given priority for seats and audio announcements serve as are friendly reminders for our own good,” she added.
About the Doha Metro Travel cards, a resident said he hopes that these passes can also be used for bus rides in the future, apart from being valid for the Lusail trams – expected to operates soon. Residents who live in areas a bit far from the metro stations are still hoping that taxi fares to and fro will become cheaper, down from QR8 to QR5, which many say is reasonable.
On the other hand, many passengers lauded Doha Metro for opening nearly a year ahead of schedule, giving residents and visitors safe, cheaper, and reliable mode of transportation. It is learnt that a large number of commuters, especially those who work at West Bay area, have been benefiting from the Doha Metro.Stations also provide a welcome relief for commuters during the summer as these facilities (entrance and exit points), as well as walkways and trains, are air-conditioned.
Meanwhile, Qatar Rail is urging passengers to visit its website and download the app for them to get more information about the Doha Metro such as answers to frequently asked questions.
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