My husband and I are one of those couples that travel here either on foot or by taxi. We don’t have a car or a scooter. We live only fifteen minutes from campus, so this totally works for us.
To the left here is our favorite local taxi driver named Kenny. He is our go to guy for when we need to arrange transport for a date night, group outing, Roseau runs, or a grocery shopping trip that will entail lots of heavy bags.
When it comes to traveling by taxi in Dominica, I have had to set some standards. In the past we have used A-1 taxi a lot because they run 24/7. However, they leave a bit to be desired. They are frequently late, low on drivers, and even sometimes are a no show. Outside of A-1, you have the option of using public transport but also using personal taxi drivers for hire. There are several taxi drivers for hire around the Picard/Portsmouth area and usually in the beginning of each semester they are out in full force with their business cards trying to recruit the new students.
After trying many different drivers in Picard, we decided to use Kenny as our first contact. I’ll tell you why…
1. Reliability. I’ve never gotten stranded.
2. Affordability. His prices are equal or less than market value in comparison to other drivers. He does not engage in some of the price hiking and price gouging behaviors that go on in Picard.
3. On time. This is biggie ! He shows up when he says he is going to show up. If for some reason he is running behind, he will call and let us know.
4. Flexibility. If I run to 7-11 and end up getting more than I planned and need a taxi ride home, I can call him at anytime during his working hours. If on the way home I need to stop somewhere else, he is usually able to accommodate that as long as he doesn’t have other clients waiting.
5. He is an “HB” (hired bus) driver, meaning officially sanctioned by the government to operate a taxi.
6. No near death experiences! Another biggie ! Too many times, I’ve been in near crash experiences here. Not cool when you are riding cliff side with the sea below. There is a lot of one lane passing here around curves and bends with no visibility. It’s important to use a driver that is safe and patient.
7. Knowledgeable about his country and friendly with visitors. When we have had guests visit Dominica, Kenny has taken us on little island tours and shared about his home and culture making the experience very positive for our friends.
8. Respectful music…sounds silly right? You don’t know what torture is till you sit in a public taxi for one hour with music so loud that you can’t hear yourself talk, with a beat so fast you think you just did speed, with the windows pounding and your chest too…not to mention subjecting children to lyrics that are grossly inappropriate.
9. Comfortable car with a smooth ride. This is important for people who suffer with motion sickness. The worse the driver, the more you get thrown around in the van as they dodge the p0tholes, the more your back hurts with every bump, and the more motion sickness you get.
So, if you are looking for a friendly Dominican to get you around these parts give Kenny Marcellin a call. You can reach him at 767-277-8350 or 767-613-4579. He works generally from 6 am to midnight and after midnight by appointment only. He is available for airport runs, island tours, Roseau trips, and rides around Picard/Portsmouth. Tell him Louisiana2Dominica sent ya !