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Old 18th July 2012, 18:23   #46
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

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Originally Posted by AlphaKilo View Post
+1, I have faced many such situations while using the SETC/TNSTC's. On one hand, they have such technical problems, over and above it, they are usually equipped with speed limiters. Probably they are too just for name sake to make sure that the driver shouldnt even try to speed. I have heard on several occasions from drivers, saying, bus is limited to 60 Kmph. Can you imagine - 60 kmph? A 340kms between Chennai - Bangalore at 60 Kmph (top speed), average speed will be lets say 40 kmph.. I would better get down and cycle to bangalore all the way, still I would be ahead of these TN RTC buses.

My personal experience, a relatively ok SETC UD bus(from outside), from bangalore to chennai, started at 7am at majestic, through chitoor, reached chennai at 6.30 PM chennai CMBT. Almost 12 hours for 340kms. Reason: Rain - wipers not working, breaks not in condition, left rear inner tyre puncture. With all these, driver managed to lug the bus to chennai in almost 12 hours at a snails pace. He took atleast 4 breaks of 20mins each.
+1, hapennes all the times. The entire TNSTC structure needs to be restructured i guess and start following the KSRTC mode or outsource the maintanence which I seriously doubt would ever happen. The bosses in TNSTC will never agree to any changes.

I was once talking to a conductor and asked the question why he has to stop at so many places, he said its their "fate", he said they will have to show the collections otherwise the senior bosses would be very angry and question them. He said for any spareparts or care they will have to be right behind the officers for days. Diesel conservation is the mantra that the bosses will tell but never checks the reality. He mentioned that there is also another sad reality, the corporations are all running in losses and any increase in fares is opposed by everyone and all. So there is no way to expect the care given by private operators. I was sppechless for few minutes.
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Old 18th July 2012, 18:26   #47
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Originally Posted by AlphaKilo
So as of now, down south, its only SETC and TNSTC who are not owning any volvo/merc/Isuzu/kinglongs (apart from the city volvo's being used as inter-city ones).

I guess either the private bus owners lobby is too powerful or the govt. is just lethargic and complacent with their all "New" 12M leylands.

I think we can add Kerala RTC to the list soon. The three Volvos are infamous for cancellations/non maintenance these days.
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Old 18th July 2012, 18:56   #48
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Default Re: KSRTC Launches Airavat Bliss & Superia: With Pantry and Toilet. Will they succeed

A good move!

KSRTC must be planning B'lore - Tirupati routes first with the larger goal being B'lore - Mumbai and then ultimately B'lore - Baroda/Ahmedabad.

Extremely competitive pricing I must say.

About maintenance, I think they should have 1 problem as compared Olivea : pricing. With a 1800 ticket, the kind of crowd going into Olivea is a certain class and although that isn't a guarantee of hygiene consciousness, people definitely know how to conduct themselves. But with this ticket only being Rs. 50/- more than regular Airavath Club Class, there will be all sorts of crowds going in. And all sorts of people have a lot of money these days. So, KSRTC has it's hands full.
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Old 18th July 2012, 19:26   #49
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Default Re: KSRTC Launches Airavat Bliss & Superia: With Pantry and Toilet. Will they succeed

My 2 cents:

Toilets: At least 8 seats (two rows) gone and in the middle of the bus. And in just a bit of time, people would start not taking seats that are close by toilet. Not sure if the toilets would have A/C. If yes, would it circulate into main cabin? If not, the non-A/C air would come in every-time toilet is opened / closed! These, along with our Indian mentality of using anything in every possible way (shave, bath..) wouldn't be attractive..

Kitchen: Food (esp one with strong odor) smell lingering around in AC would itself be disaster. Imagine a veggie in a bus where some is having a hot fish dish?! At least they should restrict this to food that KSRTC only selects (there by choosing what is apt for all in terms of smell..).

In all, I wouldn't expect this to be such a hit after all!
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Old 18th July 2012, 19:47   #50
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Default Re: KSRTC Launches Airavat Bliss & Superia: With Pantry and Toilet. Will they succeed

Understand many are concerned about the operation and maintenance of this toilets. So would like to give some insight about the operation of this Indian closet.
This is a technologically advanced closet governed by a PCB, which over sees the complete operation and maintenance. This includes operation of exhaust fan, auto dimming and glowing of light( by sensing the passenger), auto flushing - if the passenger forgets to do(or intends to do), and even stops operation if the waste water tank is full and fresh water is nil.

All this is controlled automatically and comes live once the driver switches on the control switch in the dash (this switch is indicated as "Toilet" ).

The level of water flushed each time is controlled and its programmed such a way that, after flushing and during sucking waster water from closet into waster water tank, a thin flow of water flows to prevent backflow of odour from wate water tank.The waste water tank also has a exhaust and maintains a lower air pressure than normal so that the odour never enter the closet. Also this continuously introduces oxygen into the waster water tank, so that it inhibits the growth of odour generating bacteria.

So by all means this is more user/maintenance friendly and is designed to provide superior toilet experience to passengers. This need not be the same like what was used/experienced earlier. This costs close to 4lks and can be fitted in any bus as this entire unit is independently available.

So now comes the next part - Will this be a boon to passengers and will draw more crowd? Lets go one step deeper - The operation is all perfect when our passengers uses the closet properly with out much of spill over. But there will definitely be issues, when they start to use it for other than toilet like shaving/bathing(of course bathing is not possible but try to bath). Also there is no mechanism to air dry the spill water inside and in the peripheral areas of closet. This may not be so convenient when using. Also in Europe the closet area will serve as a additional emergency exit. SO there will be a door and can be kept open when the bus is not operational, so that fresh air - read as fresh flowing air and not freshly drwan air by fans, flows keeping the odour and dries water. But here in this case there is no such arrangement. So the system relies completely on the fans only.
Apart from this there are some more practical issues. Having a closet fitted in the bus need not make it to run as a "Non stop" between any destination. There requires min one stop for filling fresh water and emptying waste water. So there should be some enroute arrangement and here our Ramu will be convenient to use the open atmosphere. The frequency of stopping is directly proportional to the distance run and that puts a question mark on the entire system of introducing toilet.

So right now nothing can be decided and only if the system over comes with practical issues, it can succeed in a big manner.
But till then, from my side a big kudos to KaSRTC for not giving up things and for reinsisting the fact that they are one of the best served STU's in India.
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Old 18th July 2012, 19:47   #51
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Default Re: KSRTC Launches Airavat Bliss & Superia: With Pantry and Toilet. Will they succeed

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Originally Posted by n.devdath View Post
How much time does it usually take from Cochin to TVM?
If we exclude the tall claims (in the range of 2 hours or less) usually made online by people who like to show that they drive fast, typical driving time with lighter to medium traffic would be anywhere between 3 hrs 20 minutes to 5 hours.

Last edited by clevermax : 18th July 2012 at 19:49.
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Old 18th July 2012, 20:18   #52
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Default Re: KSRTC Launches Airavat Bliss & Superia: With Pantry and Toilet. Will they succeed

It does seem to be a good news especially for women commuters who avoid bus trips due to lack of clean and hygenic toilets enroute.

I have seen these kind of buses abroad and have following points to make.

1. Cleaning and maintence of these toilets on a ongoing basis is a big doubt

2. Any leakage, or absence of maintence will make the entire bus smelly and difficult to travel

3. On the pantry front, getting people to heat food and eat is a messy affair and adds to the smell across the bus.

It indeed seems a good novel and great start but assuming all of the above basics would have been looked at by them.

Regards

Kartik

Last edited by GTO : 19th July 2012 at 17:06. Reason: Typo
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Old 18th July 2012, 20:56   #53
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Default re: KSRTC Launches Airavat Bliss & Superia: w/ WiFi, Seatback Monitor, Pantry and Toilet

Some how wrongly, I have used the phrase Indian closet as aganist the phrase western closet. Read it accordingly in my previous post.
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Old 18th July 2012, 21:14   #54
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

Great move overall by KSRTC.

How many seats were lost for the toilet and for the pantry?

Personally I would prefer to use the loo when the bus make a quick stop at a clean highway rest-stop. How many minutes are saved by not making a stop. 10? 15?

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Originally Posted by coolclouds View Post
Seat nos. 19 & 20 are just opposite toilet
I for one, would NOT want to sit in that seat regardless of how odour free the loo is.

Quote:
Some how wrongly, I have used the phrase Indian closet as aganist the phrase western closet. Read it accordingly in my previous post.
WC stands for water closet.

Last edited by Mpower : 18th July 2012 at 23:34.
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Old 18th July 2012, 21:39   #55
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Default Re: KSRTC Launches Airavat Bliss & Superia: w/ WiFi, Seatback Monitor, Pantry and Toi

w.r.t Kitchen and Microwave, I would have preffered if KSRTC offered in-bus food like sandwich, samosa etc, in built into the cost of ticket.

Having a microwave, encourages to bring messy foods like "sambar" "Subzi (For Chapati)" "dal" et all.

Ideally it must be for heating items like Wadas, Sandwich, Samosa etc but am sure people would bring in Messy foods. Else, Microwave, must be allowed only for food that is purchased in the Bus and not outside food.

In All - I will definetly avoid this bus at any cost.
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Old 18th July 2012, 22:22   #56
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Default Re: KSRTC Launches Airavat Bliss & Superia: With Pantry and Toilet. Will they succeed

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Originally Posted by Ashley2 View Post
This includes operation of exhaust fan, auto dimming and glowing of light( by sensing the passenger), auto flushing - if the passenger forgets to do(or intends to do), and even stops operation if the waste water tank is full and fresh water is nil.
Is not the same mechanism we are used to in Flights? Again, over a period of time, hygene will improve. If it becomes a hit, they could a charge a premium (>50), otherwise, just remove the toilet and place seats and remove the stickers for "Bliss". No major loss, except for the promotion. We should give credit to KaSRTC for trying. Did we ever think, Volvo buses will become so popular some 7-8 years back?
Off topic, They need to introduce these kind of toilets in our trains too!.
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Old 18th July 2012, 23:04   #57
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Default Re: KSRTC Launches Airavat Bliss & Superia: w/ WiFi, Seatback Monitor, Pantry and Toi

Not taking any gleam out of the shiny advertising KSRTC is upto, Volvos with Pantry and in-seat entertainment with live channels exists on the RSRTC (Rajasthan) Volvos since 2010. Services RSRTC,Jaipur

I heard they had toilets as well, but that's not confirmed. As isn't Wi-Fi connectivity. Combining these with above, maybe the first in India.

Regarding toilets, I'm sure it won't work. Call me a sadist, but we aren't wired for the hygiene required in a toilet, that to western style! As is evident in snaps, the height isn't too much, wonder if the toilet unit can be placed at the back, with the pantry being put up where the current toilet stands.
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Old 19th July 2012, 09:10   #58
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

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Originally Posted by Mpower View Post
How many seats were lost for the toilet and for the pantry?
6 is the number I was told by a driver at the launch.

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Originally Posted by Mpower View Post
Personally I would prefer to use the loo when the bus make a quick stop at a clean highway rest-stop. How many minutes are saved by not making a stop. 10? 15?
Nope, it is an hour, which has been my experience in all my Bangalore Pune trips. If you recollect, the drivers stop the bus approximately an hour before Pune at some hotel or the other so that people can relieve themselves since Swargate has zilch facilities. This stop takes at least 45 minutes to an hour.

Also, these toilets would help passengers who alight at places like Swargate where there are absolutely no facilities, even early in the morning or at night for clean toilets.
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Old 19th July 2012, 09:46   #59
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Default Re: KSRTC Launches Airavat Bliss & Superia: w/ WiFi, Seatback Monitor, Pantry and Toi

An excellent move by KSRTC. But, has anyone considered the fatality of a false odour in the air-conditioned bus for 12hours and there's no escape cos the bus is air-conditioned? The lavatories in trains, despite being 100% ventilated, *stink* and if these lavatories are going to be something like that without a dedicated exhaust facility, the passengers are DONE!
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Old 19th July 2012, 10:03   #60
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Originally Posted by n.devdath
6 is the number I was told by a driver at the launch.
There are 45 seats in Superia and 43 in Bliss. So the pantry takes two seats. Better, it could have been at the rear or front as its not a good idea to keep food right in front of toilet door.

IIRC, there was a toilet in first Volvo trail run run bus in India. This bus was used by Sharma and Puzhakadavil for quite long time. Anyone remember how clean was that?
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