How to use public transport, on your first visit to Uganda.
Are you about to travel to Uganda for the next holiday and interested in saving on transportation budget by using public transport. For a memorable holiday, you definitely have to ensure that you travel safe or even save on transportation budget. To travel allover Uganda, affordably you must embrace public transport which can be efficient and also cheaper in contrast to private means of transport. But you have to know how it works. Here is some important information you will need;
Public transport in Uganda will include Bodabodas: These are motorcycles that you can catch to take you places for short distances. In some places, locals can share them. Special hires: These are small cabs that you can hire and you go places at your own control of speed and direction. Taxis: These are what you would call Matatus. They go to a specific direction for a specific price per stage. If you use this one, you will have to wait for it to fill up, before it to starts off. Buses: These are large, 50 and above passengers on board, going for long distances, also in Kampala city. They work like taxis but for them you pay at the beginning and given a receipt and sometimes a specific seat number.
I have travelled most parts of Uganda both by private and or public transport. It is of good advantage, that most upcountry roads have been tarmacked making it so smooth and comfortable to travel. In most parts of the country, you will find very many people able speak English and it will be easy for you to communicate. Uganda is one of the best countries in English speaking across Africa since it has no collective national language. If the people know that you’re new in the area or a tourist, they will in most cases treat you well and make you feel comfortable. You just have to mention your destination to the vessel conductor and as they shout that name of the place when you reach there, you can jumbo out. If you use a big bus, they will normally issue a receipt at the starting point but most taxis won’t do this unless you start from the taxi park. If you use a big bus, please keep your receipt for several rounds of inspection. You will find different staff along the way to inspect as a way to find out if you have paid. If at one time you fail to show this receipt, they will assume you never paid from the starting point and you will be asked to pay again. This is designed this way, to avoid any chances of financial corruption among some staff who may charge passengers and don’t remit the money to the bus company.
The other reason is, these buses don’t have automated systems to monitor the payments by seats especially since they can sometimes carry excess people above the number of seats. For the well-established buses going across borders like to Rwanda or Kenya, they will normally give you a seat number, will carry only a limited number of passengers – not allowing in other passengers on the way – and therefore will be able to know that you have paid at the beginning of the journey and may not inspect along the way. However, make sure you stick to your receipt until you reach the destination to avoid inconveniences on the way.
Though public transport is a cheap option for your trip, you need to know a number of jargons used to help you get the best out of it during your trip.
Next, I will write on how to choose the most reliable means of public transport in Uganda or you can comment with the request on this subject.