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Old 10th March 2012, 10:26   #1561
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

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Originally Posted by aroonanand View Post
My only grievance with the Airavats is the lack of leg room for long journeys.. For 5-7 hours it is ok but for longer journeys I find it uncomfortable.
Somehow I am not uncomfortable at all, given that I am 5'11 and very very heftily built..
But the real reason may be that I am at my seat only for 7-8 hrs, Else I am in the cleaner seat
So in a way what you say is true.
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Old 10th March 2012, 12:31   #1562
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

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Originally Posted by TKMCE View Post
Travelled Bangalore Trivandrum last night. After having read Aroon Anands experience on SRS decided to stay clear of them , but I did notice that they (SRS) seem to be the most dynamic of the lot in terms of pricing - they were selling at Rs 850 on the last day for the multi axle, all the rest were selling at 1000 or more. They also seem to have a droppping point at Technpark.

[/b]
Thanks, for heeding my advice of not traveling with SRS.... Their pricing is low as they do not seem to have many regulars on the Trivandrum service.. Most of the passengers are either last minute bookings or picked up en route.. Unlike a KPN or KaSRTC where you see a regular crowd....

They advertise a dropping point at Technopark but they do not drop you there.. Their last stop in TVM is near the Railway Station opposite New Cinemas... When I went, I was told Technopark is only a pick up and not a drop.. and On the way back when I called to inquire what time is the Technopark pick up, I was told they no longer go there !!!!
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Old 10th March 2012, 12:46   #1563
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

Quote:
Originally Posted by aroonanand View Post
....... My only grievance with the Airavats is the lack of leg room for long journeys.. For 5-7 hours it is ok but for longer journeys I find it uncomfortable.
Quote:
Originally Posted by coriollis View Post
Somehow I am not uncomfortable at all, given that I am 5'11 and very very heftily built......
I agree with aroonanand to an extent. Though I am not so tall and wide, I felt the leg room was on a compromise when the front seat was inclined.
This is a issue when the travel time exceeds 10 hrs.
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Old 10th March 2012, 21:49   #1564
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

One more good thing about KPN is they do not hike up prices during peak periods for their normal services.

However let me add that as a management professional, I personally do not have anything against this practice of hiking up pricing on peak demand times.

Went to Sona Travels, Aluva to book for Sunday to Bangalore. Fare is only 800 Rs for a Non AC sleeper against the normal 560. A last row seat in the Bharati MB was being quoted for 1350 while a similar offering for Shama was offered for 1300!!!. Took SPS - no other go (and luckily it is not a last row seat) and now when I check the one or two remaining seats also appear to have been snapped up.Got an SMS confirmation immediately after handing over the money.

Again let me stress I dont have anything against the practice by Sona as they are transparent, Any Sunday departures you book on their website has the fare at 800 while normal days it is 560 for Non AC.

Again nothing against KPN for cancelling my 7 PM bus but a little common sense by their office staff at Wilson Garden would have been great as 2 of the 3 people who were boarding from their office for the 7 PM bus which was cancelled were there by 6.15 and we could have been at least offered an option on the 6.30 PM sleeper which had seats empty.


Saw the Viji Yatra B9R "Vaishnavi" at Kazhakuttam near techno-park today . Bus looked well maintained. Will try them next time.

Did Trivandrum Ernakulam on a KeSRTC super express. Painful- Apparently the running time for the stretch is 5 hour 50 min. Got down at Aroor after a painful journey of around 5 .15 hours and then took a Low Floor going via the Byepass to Aluva which reached in 45 minutes!!! Good deal for the last stretch - 23 Rs.
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Old 11th March 2012, 13:02   #1565
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

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Originally Posted by TKMCE View Post
Went to Sona Travels, Aluva to book for Sunday to Bangalore. Fare is only 800 Rs for a Non AC sleeper against the normal 560. A last row seat in the Bharati MB was being quoted for 1350 while a similar offering for Shama was offered for 1300!!!. Took SPS - no other go (and luckily it is not a last row seat) and now when I check the one or two remaining seats also appear to have been snapped up.Got an SMS confirmation immediately after handing over the money.

Again let me stress I dont have anything against the practice by Sona as they are transparent, Any Sunday departures you book on their website has the fare at 800 while normal days it is 560 for Non AC.
Interesting! Bharathi's website sells the same ticket for Rs.950 on all days, including Sundays. The same seat is sold by Sona for Rs. 1350 - very transparent indeed

Even on regular days, an Ernakulam-Bangalore ticket on the Bharathi MB is Rs. 950 on the Bharathi website, and Rs. 1000 on the Sona website.
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Old 12th March 2012, 02:33   #1566
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

Travelled from Bangalore to Thalassery in PK Travels' Isuzu bus on saturday night. Boarding point was at Madiwala, and scheduled time of departure was 20:30hrs. The bus arrived at 20:10hrs, and started moving at 20:50hrs. Then, there was an hour long crawl till Kalasipalayam, where the bus halted for 20 minutes to load parcels. From then on, it was doing good speeds. The bus overtook a few Airavats as well. I was dropped at Thalassery at 05:35hrs.

The bus was an Isuzu big bus. There were scratches and dents on its right side, but insides were clean. The saloon lamps were of LED type - like those seen in the new BS-4 buses of BMTC. They started playing some old,melodious Malayalam tracks (very thoughtful of them to have avoided some of the recent tracks that are loud and jarring, at the same time annoying), when the bus started from Madiwala till they reached Kalasipalayam. Then, a Malayalam movie was played till they took a refreshement break at around midnight. Don't remember the name of the place, but it was similar to the Uthaiyya hotel near Krishnagiri. I also saw the KSRTC (Kerala) BGLR-KNR Super Express parked there. Forgot to add that all passengers were provided a 500ml bottle of water and a blanket. No rash driving for whatever time I remained awake. There was just one driver and an attendant, both were friendly.

My seat was towards the front, but the engine noise could be heard at moderate levels. I assume it must be a tad higher towards the rear. Definitely noise insulation is nowhere in the league of Volvo. The AC vents were placed at an awkward position under the hatrack.

Another interesting observation in that route is, there are many non-AC buses WITHOUT an air suspension. Golden, PK, Ashoka are the main players, i guess. All of them have at least one Isuzu or Volvo and then a few non-AC buses (a few with Air suspension and many buses without A.S.).
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Old 12th March 2012, 11:01   #1567
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

Quote:
Originally Posted by binaiks View Post
Interesting! Bharathi's website sells the same ticket for Rs.950 on all days, including Sundays. The same seat is sold by Sona for Rs. 1350 - very transparent indeed

Even on regular days, an Ernakulam-Bangalore ticket on the Bharathi MB is Rs. 950 on the Bharathi website, and Rs. 1000 on the Sona website.
Binaiks

Tickets issued from Sona Travels are issued as SONA TRAVELS (SPS) or SONA TRAVELS (BHARATI). In other words the contract is with Sona, not the operator and the eticket is issued accordingly by Sona Travels.When I booked on VRL from their authorised agent recently, the ticket was on VRL stock, the contract was not with the agent. You are also aware Sona runs their own services as well.

Finally it is up to you to buy or not - simple!!! You book an e-ticket from an operator website and try boarding from an en route point - in many cases you are nobody's baby!!! You go to any Neeta agent and there will be notices all over saying no ETICKET queries!!! I once booked a similar SONA SPS, the bus got into small accident 15 min later, and Sona took care to ensure all who booked through them were accommodated in another bus, the Sharma Non AC which was following SPS. People who booked through other agents were left to fend for themselves!!!


In Sona's case there is a premium on peak days . but as long as they are upfront about it and if they want to make a profit - why not??? Incidentally KPN is very strict, they DO NOT allow agents to mark up their tickets. So even on Sona Travels on Sunday, you get their normal fare!!!

Mine was a last minute trip, I booked the tickets the day before and while I paid a premium, I did not end up with a back seat even on booking so close to departure. Overall it was still worth it, as the bus which left Aluva at 7.45 PM reached Madiwala at 6.15- 10.30 hours on a Non Volvo is good by any standards.
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Old 12th March 2012, 11:33   #1568
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

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Originally Posted by TKMCE View Post
...
However let me add that as a management professional, I personally do not have anything against this practice of hiking up pricing on peak demand times.....
I wish that was your personal view and not as a management prefessional view.
If you have spent buying a ticket for coimbatore during peak hour for Rs.1500 against normal ticket of Rs.600, then you would not have told this.
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Old 12th March 2012, 11:59   #1569
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

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Originally Posted by silversteed View Post
there are many non-AC buses WITHOUT an air suspension. Golden, PK, Ashoka are the main players, i guess. All of them have at least one Isuzu or Volvo and then a few non-AC buses
Most of the Non A/c buses in this route (Bangalore-Telicherry-Kannur-Payyannur) are without Air suspension!
You can add Kalpaka travels also on the list. I feel they have some of the best maintained buses. Also Sagar travels runs one bus daily.
Among these, Kalpaka and Sagar do not have any A/c or volvo buses. Ashoka runs one AL A/c , Golden 1 AL A/c and 1 Volvo, PK 1 AL A/c and 1 Isuzu big. Online booking facility is available for all the operators except sagar.
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Old 12th March 2012, 12:57   #1570
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

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Originally Posted by sandsun7 View Post
Most of the Non A/c buses in this route (Bangalore-Telicherry-Kannur-Payyannur) are without Air suspension!
You can add Kalpaka travels also on the list. I feel they have some of the best maintained buses. Also Sagar travels runs one bus daily.
Among these, Kalpaka and Sagar do not have any A/c or volvo buses. Ashoka runs one AL A/c , Golden 1 AL A/c and 1 Volvo, PK 1 AL A/c and 1 Isuzu big. Online booking facility is available for all the operators except sagar.
I missed out Kalpaka. PK has two non-AC AL semi-sleeper buses too. I'd seen them parked near to our bus during the midnight break. One had air suspension and the other had Weveller.
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Old 12th March 2012, 13:12   #1571
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Originally Posted by silversteed View Post
PK has two non-AC AL semi-sleeper buses too..
In fact all these operators have at least 3 non ac buses daily up and down. PK and golden should be having the maximum number of buses. Kalpaka runs 3 and some days 4 buses. Ashoka also runs 4 buses, all terminating at Kannur, some via telicherry and some via Mattannur-Ancharakandy. PK also runs a service to Vadakara that goes via Telicherry.
In spite of this sector having so many buses, most of them run full even on weekdays!
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Old 12th March 2012, 14:48   #1572
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

Hi All,
I have travelled Bangalore-Tirupathi-Bangalore in KSRTC. Onwards was in Rajahamsa. it was delayed by 40 Mins to pick me up in the Domlur Pickup point. but once picked up, there was no hassle further and journey was smooth. they stopped for dinner at a Kamat outlet and the facility was decent and all the package tour busses (volvos, mercs) were stopping there only. it reached the destination with the same delay of 40 mins. when i was chatting with the conductor, he informed that in majestic itself it was delayed by 15 mins due to some delayed show passenger and then the usual bangalore traffic has delayed them before pickup point. i would rate my experience of travelling in that bus as very good.

There ends the pleasant things and my retrun was quite eventful. when i came back after darshan to Tirupathi, i decided to use the volvo bus and the first one available was at 20:01 which goes to Mysore via Bangalore. Went to the booking office and booked the ticket. Came back to board the bus and the vehicle was open for boarding and the A/C was not switched on. People were sweating inside the bus but the A/C was not switched on till it was 7.50 PM. The driver was active in getting more passengers than making the existing ones comfortable. I accepted the first row seat (Seat # 1 W) as I am bit tall and the extra legroom in first row (as compared to the rest) is helpful. But when I occupied the seat, I was given a shock… there is no screen to block the lights coming through the windshield (on the passenger side). Immediately I have complained to the bus driver and conductor and the conductor went back and removed a side curtain from rear row and given it to me fix it on my own.

The bus was very old and it was foul smelling… the feeling you get if you enter an old room which was not opened for months together. This may be due to the accumulated dust and the A/C blowing it inside the bus… as usual, the bus was delayed by 15 mins (on the lookout for filling the last row). I was sweating even after the A/C which has run for more than 30 mins. I went and checked the temp control and it was showing that the cabin temp is 27C. However I was sweating badly and when I checked the overhead portion where you have adjustable vent for air flow, it was fully open but no air coming out through it. Tried adjusting it to see whether I can get some air but nothing resulted in getting some air. Then the conductor went on to issue the blanket - of course it’s a unwashed re-use as I have seen all the blankets were piled up in the last row. In any case with the sweating, I am not in a position to use the blanket and simply let it hang on the half partition behind the driver.

Add to this, there was some annoying buzzer sound from front whenever the driver was applying brake, this became very evident once the movie is finished and the video is switched off. Sweating and this noise ensured me not to get sleep. I endured this torture till 12.30. As I was very tiered (due to walking up the hills for darshan) and not having proper reset in between, resulted in me dozing off and it lasted only for 30 mins as bus was stopped 30 KM prior to Blr to unload some luggage and the noise + no movement ensured that I come out of my precious little sleep.

Then I was wide awake and watching the driving by standing near the driver and realized that the sound which was coming every time was some warning sound coming and there were 2 red/warning lights going off whenever the brake was applied. In another 20-30 mins we reached KR Puram and I got down. To my relief, the outside air was very pleasant and cold. So to sum it up, the return journey was un-pleasant and un-comfortable even after paying Rs. 400. So I have called the KSRTC call center duly and complained to them. Hope someone in the dept wakes up and does something to this particular bus. It could have been an one off instance with this particular bus.

But guys, if you happen to get a ticket to travel in an old Airawat, please stay off and take another if there is a feasibility. At least, I am going to avoid this particular bus (Mysore to Tirupathi) and take the other ones or other types (Volvo Multi Axle or Merc as I am sure they are lot younger).

Last edited by Mpower : 12th March 2012 at 21:19. Reason: use paras for easier reading
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Old 12th March 2012, 14:55   #1573
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I wish that was your personal view and not as a management prefessional view.
If you have spent buying a ticket for coimbatore during peak hour for Rs.1500 against normal ticket of Rs.600, then you would not have told this.
We in India are so used to many services subsidized to nonsensical levels that we are still struggling to understand what is free market pricing.

You do not expect the same off peak bargain rate available in the middle of the monsoon in Goa for the same hotel room on Dec 31!!!

So think of your 1500 Rs ticket on your Coimbatore Bangalore the same way. What you have left unsaid is that the flight tickets would have all been sold out on that day or priced 6000 or higher

And by the way I just paid 800 Rs on a Kochi Bangalore peak hour ticket instead of the usual 520!!!

Last edited by TKMCE : 12th March 2012 at 14:58.
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Old 12th March 2012, 20:36   #1574
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

Two weeks back, traveled from Bangalore to Ernakulam in A1 Travels non a/c bus. It was a last minute travel and I had to reach Ernakulam by early morning. Since I had seen this bus departing on time several times, booked the ticket without any doubt.
(The same Saturday, SPS was selling their tickets for Rs. 500, the cheapest fare on Redbus)

The bus started at 5.15pm against 5pm departure from Madiwala. It was a Trivandrum service and well maintained. Surprisingly, the bus took Tiruppur-Palladam-Pollachi-Palakkad-Trichur route and dropped me at Vyttila few minutes after 4am.

Overall, the bus, staff and service was good but their dinner stop is too early (Uthaiah at 6.45 to 7pm)
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Old 12th March 2012, 21:16   #1575
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

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Originally Posted by TKMCE View Post
We in India are so used to many services subsidized to nonsensical levels that we are still struggling to understand what is free market pricing.
So you mean to say a fare of 600 for chennai - coimbatore is a subsidized one!
I am sure ABT/ARC whose fares are ~600 does not run a charity, as they dont jack their fares during peak hours.


Quote:
Originally Posted by TKMCE View Post
And by the way I just paid 800 Rs on a Kochi Bangalore peak hour ticket instead of the usual 520!!!
As your statement of jacking the fare was generic, I jumped into argument. Anyway no offense from my side
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