Dubai: If you take the Dubai Metro every day to work, you have so much to be grateful for, especially if you use the Gold Class.
A New Yorker, Benjamin Zhang, has travelled all the way to Dubai and taken the emirate’s main transportation system for an in-depth review. In a recently published article, he recounted his experience in the first-class cabin and gave a detailed account of what it was like to go around Dubai aboard a driverless train.
Zhang is a commuter himself and every day, he takes the New York and New Jersey’s “aging public transportation network” to get to the office and back. He has also travelled around the world and experienced what it’s like to use other public transportation systems in many cities worldwide.
“So, I found it rather refreshing to experience the recently constructed metro system in Dubai. In fact, the Dubai Metro has something I had never encountered before, a first-class cabin,” Zhang wrote in an article on Business Insider.
“I've been fortunate to have had the opportunity to travel around the world and experience many of the major metro/subway systems in operation today. In my opinion, Gold Class is simply the best experience I've ever had,” he added.
Zhang talked about how the Dubai Metro works, what amenities are being offered to passengers in the cabins, including the wifis, ATMs and shops at the stations.
He took particular note of the look and feel of the Gold Class cabin, which he likened to first class on a long-distance train or plane, citing that it's "very clean and very spacious," and took photos showing the plush seats.
“Unlike a standard subway car, the Gold Class is equipped with individual seats,” he noted. “Some of the seats are arranged in a club style that faces one another. Many of the forward facing seats are equipped with seat back tray tables.”
He went on to say that there is a special compartment for travel bags, as well as an information display and a loud speaker that alerts passengers.
“Since there aren’t any actually conductors on the train to check tickets, there are signs posted on the doors and above them warning people that those who are in Gold Class, but didn’t pay for the ticket are subject to a Dh100 fine.”
He also took photos to show how a metro station looks like on the outside, as well as the elevated tracks on Shaikh Zayed Road and the view of the track from the cabin, among many others.
His verdict? “I thoroughly enjoyed my time riding around on the Dubai Metro. Even in Silver Class, the trains were clean and well maintained,” Zhang wrote.
The Dubai Metro opened in 2009 and since then until August last year, it has transported more than one billion passengers.
The transport link is set to be expanded soon, with the construction of Route 2020, the extension of the Metro’s Red Line that spans 14.5 kilometres, now underway.