Public Transport in Oman

Local and intercity

Public transport in Oman is available, but not very popular aside from taxis and baizas (small buses). Since the sultanate does not have a railway network yet and the distances are so long, most people prefer to travel by car.

Buses

Travelling by small bus is the most popular form of public transport. The buses are called baizas and can be recognized by their white and orange colours. Ticket prices are low and the buses go along all the big roadways, including the metropolitan area of Muscat. You can stop one on the street and ask where they are going.

Bigger buses with air conditioning and comfortable seats are also available, but are not as popular due to their higher ticket prices and slower speeds.

The Oman National Transport Corporation (ONTC) has a regular bus service from Ruwi to Dubai, Sohar, Nizwa, Salalah and other destinations. You can check the timetable here .

Taxis

Taxis in Oman have the same white and orange colours as the baizas. Booking a private taxi is relatively expensive, however it is customary in Oman to share your cab with others to bring down the price. Omani taxis do not use a meter, so to avoid getting stung ask locals or experienced expats about average prices and use this knowledge to negotiate with the driver before a ride. As an example, getting from Muscat International Airport to any destination in Muscat should cost you about RO6 (14EUR or 16USD).   

If you are a female expat, riding a taxi alone should not be a problem, but it is useful to know that women normally sit in the back or next to other women while using any form of public transport.

Railway

Oman does not have a railway network yet, however in 2010 development began on the first of three lines, from Muscat to Sohar, expected to be completed in 2019. The other two proposed routes are from Muscat to Daq and Sohar to Al Ain. More information about the project can be found on the Oman Rail  website.

Air travel

Muscat International Airport (formerly Seeb International Airport) is the main airport of Oman, located about 30km outside of Muscat. A variety of taxi services and buses are available at the airport. As well as Oman Air, the national carrier, airlines such as British Airways, Etihad, Emirates and Gulf Air all fly to this airport.

Salalah International Airport, 5.5km outside Salalah’s centre, is also available.


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