Transportation - Get In
Muscat International Airport, also called Seeb International Airport(tel. +968 24 519223 or 519456) is located 37 km west of Mutrah. A new terminal is being completed in 2014 and will have a capacity of 12 million passengers per year. The number of airlines flying to Muscat increases each year, although the Omani sale of their part of Gulf Air has meant a temporary decrease in passengers.
- Oman Air (in Ruwi, opposite Central Bank), , , (reservations), (tickets)fax: .Operates flights to Muscat from many airports in the Middle East, Asia and Europe. Domestically operates flights to/from Salalah and Khasab.
- Air Arabia, . 2 flights per day from Sharjah to Muscat, duration of flight is 55min.
- Air India Express. Flights from Amritsar on Wednesday and Friday (duration of flight 3hrs 15min, from Delhi on W, F (duration of flight 5 hrs 20min), from Kochi on Tu, Th and Su (duration of flight 3h35), from Kozhikode on F, Sa, Su (duration of flight 3h25), from Thiruvanantahapuram on Tu, Th-Su (duration of flight 3h45, or 5h20 if flight goes via Cochin).
- British Airways, , , fax: . Daily flights from London Heathrow to Muscat.
- Egypt Air, , , fax: .Offers flights from Cairo to Muscat M, W-F, arriving in Muscat next morning, duration of flight 4h.
- Emirates, , , fax: . 10 flights per day from Dubai to Muscat, flying time 1h.
- Etihad Airways, , , fax: . 3 flights per day from Abu Dhabi to Muscat, duration of flight 1h05.
- flydubai. 3 flights per day from Dubai to Muscat.
- Gulf Air, , , fax: . Flights from Bahrain to Muscat.
- KLM. Flights from Amsterdam to Muscat on M, W-F, Su, duration of flight 8h30.
- Kuwait Airways, , , fax: .
- Lufthansa, , , fax: . Daily flights from Frankfurt to Muscat with a technical stop in Abu Dhabi, duration of flight 8h.
- Pakistan International Airlines, Building No. 69, Way No. 2728, Block No. 127, Markaz Tijari Street, CBD area, , e-mail: [email protected]. Flights from Islamabad on M, W, Th, Sa and Su and from Peshawar on W, Th and Sa.
- Qatar Airways, , fax: .
- Royal Jordanian, , , fax: . Flies from Amman to Muscat on Tu, Th, F and Su, arriving in Muscat next morning
- Swiss, , , fax: .Daily flights from Zurich to Muscat via Dubai.
- Turkish Airlines. Daily flights from Istanbul with a stopover in Bahrain.
Taxis from and to the airport should cost between 6 OMR (Golden Tulip, near the airport) and 12 OMR (Al Bustan Palace Hotel, Al Bustan). Taxis can be booked at the Taxi Counter (tel. +968 24518780 or 24518781, email: [email protected]). Make sure you agree the fare with the driver before commencing your journey. Fares should be agreed before commencing the journey and may be pre-paid at the Muscat International Airport Taxi Counter. There are ATM machines inside the terminal just prior to exiting on the left side of the doors.
Public buses, run by the Oman National Transport Company, stop onSultan Qaboos Highway outside of the Airport. If you wish to catch public buses, you will have to walk the short distance to the bus stops on the Highway.
Oman National Transport Company (ONTC), Al-Jaame St (near Sun City Hotel in Ruwi), , e-mail: (reservations), (information)[email protected]. Runs buses to Muscat from Dubai (duration of journey: 6 hrs). Within Oman there are daily buses to Muscat from Buraimi (via Sohar), Nizwa (2hrs 20min),Salalah (13 hrs, reservation required), Sanaw and Sur (4 hrs 15 min)
You can reach Muscat by road from the United Arab Emirates. The journey takes about 5h by crossing the border in Hatta/Al Ain.
You can drive from Al Ghaydah in Yemen. The journey is about 6 hours via the border crossing at Sarfeit to Salalah and then another 10 hours to Muscat.
National Ferry Company, Call Center & Passenger Boarding Office (Sultan Qaboos Port, Mutrah), , toll-free: (office), (reservations)fax: , e-mail:[email protected]. Su-Th 07:30-15:30 (office). Ferries arrive weekly from Khasab to the main port in Mutrah, departing every Saturday at 11:30 and arriving five hours later. Ferries departing from Mutrah leave every Thursday at noon. All ferries have free Wi-Fi, with lunch, snacks and beverages included in the ticket price. You should get your ferry ticket in advance to ensure your place on the boat. One way: 45/23 OMR (business/tourist class), return: 85/44 OMR (business/tourist class).
Transportation - Get Around
Maxi taxis (minibuses, known throughout the expat community as baisa buses) ply the highway from Seeb to the Corniche area. The charge is OMR0.100 (100 Bzs) from the Corniche area to the church roundabout and another 100 Bzs from the church round about to Wadi Adai.
On arrival at the airport, situated approximately 40km from the main Muscat CBD, you can get a baisa bus down the main highway in either direction.
The (mostly orange and white) taxis are a bit pricier, and they hang around the hotels where they get juicy fares from unwary travellers. They will charge OMR8 for an airport trip if you don't haggle, but you should be able to agree OMR5. They always say they will give you "good price", but it's best to figure out what you want to spend then agree before you get in.
The Maxi Taxis ply the main routes through town, and they go where they want so you might have to find one going your direction. Once you are on one, they will make sure you get there. The place to wait for them is on the on-ramps of most of the main highway junctions, when you'll usually see a few people waiting around for one. A journey within the Muscat area should not cost more than OMR0.300 each, but if you look like an experienced traveller and hand them OMR0.200 then you can usually get away with that.
For visitors staying in Muscat for longer than a day, renting a car provides the most flexibility and is far more economical than using taxis, as one taxi ride from Ghubrah to Muscat and back will cost about the same as hiring a car for one day. A 2WD is fine to see the sights within and around Muscat, but if you're planning to explore wadis and mountains you'll need a 4WD.
Road signs in Muscat can be confusing, and motorway exits are not always clearly marked. Compared with elsewhere in the Gulf (e.g. Dubai and Doha) Muscat drivers are reasonably disciplined, but visitors from outside the region may find the local driving style erratic. For a gentler introduction into Muscat traffic it may be easier to take a taxi (or hotel-provided shuttle) from the airport, and arrange for a rental car through your accommodation – rates are usually the same as if not better than at the airport.
Most local and international rental agencies have offices at the airport. An international driver's permit is theoretically required to rent a car, but usually agents will request only your national licence. All car hires include mandatory insurance. The cheapest car hire is about OMR15 per day for a 2WD economy car with manual transmission and sometimes no air-conditioning; for a 4WD, expect to pay double that amount.
- ABC, . A local agency.
- Al Maskry Rent-a-Car, , e-mail: , [email protected]. A well-established local agency.
- Avis Oman, . (airport), (city)
- Budget Oman, , fax: , e-mail:[email protected].
- Europcar, . (airport), (city)
- Hertz, . (airport), (city)
- National, . (airport), (city)
- Sixt, . (airport), (city)
- Thrifty, . (airport), (city)
- Nomad Tours, , e-mail: (airport), (city)[email protected]