IF the thought of rush hour drives you to despair then look no further than getting into Manchester’s City Centre by Waxi, the Manchester water taxi service.
This service is hoping to appeal to more commuters heading into the City Centre for work, connecting Sale, Old Trafford along the Bridgewater Canal to the city centre with an additional route from Media City to Spinningfields.
The founder of the Waxi, Steven Cadwell, said: “It all stemmed back to when Media City was being built because I work in Salford.
“So I was thinking – as Media City gets busier, trams and buses will get busier because everybody will be travelling to town on the tram, car and bus. But nobody is using the waterways so why don’t we use a water service to take people into town?”
For the newer route available since late September from Media City to Spinningfields the service runs every hour, on the hour and is bookable via the website. The average time to get from The Alchemist at Media City into the Spinningfields area is 30 minutes and the average price for that route is £8 per adult and £4 per child.
Currently the service is available for private hire or you can book to travel by water taxi on their website.
However, Cadwell’s plans for the future hope to have a full running timetable throughout the day to provide water transport for Manchester commuters.
He said: “My long-term plan when the weather is better and the infrastructure in the town centre is better, is that we run from 7am until 7 or 8pm in the evening every single day, but we still need to raise awareness as people are still opting to use the bus or tram.”
Currently, Waxi are offering a ‘WAXI2WORK’ scheme in Media City, which offers those that book a half price fare when they ride the waterways to work. Alongside this on their Twitter page, WaxiMCR are offering a competition in which you and six friends can win a private hire if you go to their page and retweet or follow them on Instagram. The alternative travel also offers a waxiMCR app which provides timetables and further information.
The water taxi service is linked with fashion brand, Henri Lloyd, as their original office is in Little Hulton and still remains there today. Cadwell spoke: “Henri Lloyd is actually from Salford. The idea was that it is two local businesses promoting each other and that are infamous with the waterways.”
Last year, the Manchester water taxi was named as one of the City’s highlights by tourism website, Smarter Travel.