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Old 21st May 2013, 13:27   #2776
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Originally Posted by binaiks View Post
Keep away from Airavat Gold Class from now on - they'd only crawl.
Does that apply to all KaSRTC Volvos? I was considering Airavat for my upcoming Bangalore-Goa trip
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Old 21st May 2013, 13:37   #2777
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Originally Posted by urzdeepu View Post
Good review Binai. Am very much impressed by the quality displayed by both Ashok Leyland and Azad in making this bus a noticeable piece.However they could have made the headlamp cluster something more attractive. How was the pick up of the bus? Any chit chats with the crew about their reviews?
The headlamp cluster is sourced from China as such. It had very good throw though. The pickup was generally good - it did struggle a bit in the ghats on the Shoranur-Thrissur stretch, especially when the driver tried going through in higher gears.

Did not speak much to the crew - I was not in such a state during this journey - was down with very bad fever. Had spoke to the maintenance guys some time back about these buses - they are very happy. Mileage too seems to be great.

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Originally Posted by Manzone799 View Post
...So, friends if it is raining in Bangalore and you plan to go by KaSRTC down south, then you are screwed !
Not just rains. Any delay at the origin, is proudly carried on till the destination. If the bus is an hour late at origin, expect to have atleast a 2hr delay at the destination - KaSRTC crew generally have no inclination to maintain time.

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Originally Posted by sv1976 View Post
Does that apply to all KaSRTC Volvos? I was considering Airavat for my upcoming Bangalore-Goa trip
No. KaSRTC buses are locked at 95/100kmph, and NWKRTC at 85kmph.
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Old 21st May 2013, 14:41   #2778
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

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down at the EKM bus stand and went home had a quick shower and breakfast. As usual, i took my car out for a drive at about 12.15 noon, as i drove past Kadavanthara (about 12.30 noon) - i saw the KaSRTC Benz proudly entering the city as if it arrived the first ! It was supposed to reach here at 9.00 AM. So, friends if it is raining in Bangalore and you plan to go by KaSRTC down south, then you are screwed !

The 1930 Dep from Shantinagar (the first one - Benz) is very rarely too late and I have not reached later than 6.30 AM at Aluva. Similarly the first departure from Ernakulam (at 6.30 PM) which is the return trip of the same bus has always reached by 6.30 AM at Majestic. The only draw back is this bus has a pick up at Trichur and goes inside the town and wastes a lot of time at Trichur Bus Station but still manages to reach by 6.30 AM. These were the preferred departuress for me due to having to reach Aluva early and Majestic as well early. With a 10% discount on the retiurn leg if both legs booked together, plus the advantages of specifying your boarding point as Aluva (Byepass), it has been a convenient option for me and never let me down.

I dont prefer private buses as most buses are tailored towards the IT crowd at Madiwala/SilkBoard/ITPL and many of them will not even continue beyond Madiwala. Plus they do not keep timings with any sort of consistency. In addition far too many accidents due to rash driving happening nowadays although most of these are hushed up double quick. Last one I think was Shama after Moovatupuzha and that too came out in the open I guess because someone who actually writes reviews elsewhere ended up in the bus and wrote about his experience.
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Old 21st May 2013, 15:33   #2779
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

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Originally Posted by TKMCE View Post
The 1930 Dep from Shantinagar (the first one - Benz) is very rarely too late and I have not reached later than 6.30 AM at Aluva.
That is by far my favorite option while going to Cochin. It's never too late and reaches Ernakulam mostly on time.

I also don't prefer the private operators because they drive so recklessly and i had a nightmarish experience with Kallada, the last time i traveled. They gave me a blanket that was used as a vomit bag by the previous user . I asked them to give me another one but they ignored. After that trip, i have never traveled in any private operated buses.
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Old 21st May 2013, 16:57   #2780
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

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Originally Posted by binaiks View Post
Read in another forum that all NWKRTC Volvos are locked at 85kmph! That is too much of a speed restriction - Keep away from Airavat Gold Class from now on - they'd only crawl.
That explains why they were literally crawling on the super smooth 3 laned highway from Kohlapur to Hubli

I was tracking them on the GPS on my cell phone for good part of the night and morning and the bus never ever went above 90. The bus was in a very good condition which made the situation more frustrating as I was struggling to understand why the drivers are not driving a little faster to cover the delay.

I will surely stay away from NWKRTC in the future.
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Old 21st May 2013, 22:47   #2781
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Originally Posted by urzdeepu View Post
. Am very much impressed by the quality displayed by both Ashok Leyland and Azad in making this bus a noticeable piece......
One more 12M RE running in Kolkata - Siliguri route.
Intercity Bus travel reviews-kolkata.jpg

This two are in Kolkata - Asansol route.
Intercity Bus travel reviews-asansol-1.jpg
Intercity Bus travel reviews-asansol-2.jpg

Last edited by Ashley2 : 21st May 2013 at 22:54.
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Old 22nd May 2013, 00:11   #2782
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Originally Posted by Ashley2 View Post
One more 12M RE running in Kolkata - Siliguri route.
Thanks for sharing the pics of these 12M RE sleepers. Happy that they are also slowly but steadily penetrating into the sleeper market.

The Siliguri bus looks much better than its Southern brothers due to minimal stickering. Also note the AC unit design is different from the Neelu based buses which have the same looking like an integrated piece on the body.
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Old 22nd May 2013, 07:19   #2783
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The AZAD built ASHOK LEYLAND RE looks definitely better than the VOLVO clone. The part which takes the cake is the faking of the way the VOLVO emblem on the grill has been shaped, they have thought of everything!
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Old 22nd May 2013, 19:32   #2784
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7 PM Kesineni Volvo Bus between Hyderabad and Chennai - My experience.

I recently (17th May) traveled between Hyderabad and Chennai and since I didnt get my preferred first row seat with Dhananjaya travels, had to look for the next best option which is Kesineni. I was hoping that my wait listed ticket with our railways move to RAC but by Monday (13th May) it was still at WL24, so, decided to book a ticket in Volvo as a backup which eventually resulted as the mode of travel. The train ticket didnt move beyond WL6 on Friday morning and hence cancelled it and decided to travel by Kesineni Volvo. This is the first time I am traveling on the 7 PM Volvo as usually I settle for the late night Volvos, reached the Kesineni Gachibowli office by 6:40 PM and checked whether the bus is on time and the guy nodded affirmatively.

The announcement came in sharp at 7 PM stating that the bus has arrived and please start boarding, since I had minimal luggage and the first row (left side) seat, I had ample time to board the bus. The exterior was "okay" as the bus has clocked 8.7L+ Kms and should be atleast 4 years old (the bus registration number is AP 16 XX 8000), the interiors were fairly okay, the recliner of my seat was faulty as it cant "hold" the reclined position permanently, it will recline down but will upright itself when we get up, a bit irritating for me.

The bus eventually started around 7:30 PM, the driver took the ORR and was seemingly a bit rash, a nice telugu movie (Naayak - The Leader) was played and the movie was okay to watch, dinner break was taken at 9:20 PM at some Highway "run down" restaurant which had pathetic food. Post the dinner break, the bus started at 9:50 PM, this is when the race against time started for the driver. As the frequent travelers between this route knows, half the route from Hyderabad to Chennai has bad / broken roads post which the nice 4 lane road starts, but this driver had absolutely no respect to the road or the bus or the co-travelers (read Trucks, cars and other buses). He was ripping the bus on the roads and was consistently hitting 100 Kmph (not sure if there is a speed lock as he didnt go beyond that), I can feel the thuds and whams of the tyres against the road struggling to keep the bus on the road and there was a good amount jolts (not worse though as some people still managed to sleep with loud "snoring") felt inside the bus. I was not able to sleep and finally around 1:30 AM decided to sit next to the driver (on the attender seat) and was observing his driving style, oh boy, he was toying it like a "bike" wading the bus through the slow moving trucks, zig zags, cut across, scare the other driver by frequent high - low beam dips, what not, I felt pity for the other drivers because of this guy.

The bus reached Nellore around 3 AM and finally around 3:30 AM, this guy took a break (he drove the bus non-stop from 9:50 PM to 3:30 AM) and slept on the designated co-driver seat (first row left side window seat with provisioning to stretch the legs). I managed to sleep from 4:00 AM to 5:15 AM due to tiredness. The second driver was no less rash and managed to reach Chennai - Koyambedu by 6:00 AM and this included a 10minute break at around 4:10 at the TN-AP border and another 15 minutes delay at the Red Hills Toll naka.

These guys took exactly 10 hours and 30 minutes (including 30 minutes dinner break, 30 minutes bio / toll naka breaks) which by far my fastest travel between these cities. My family was surprised to see me so early in the morning while they thought I would be reaching around 10 AM.

Positives:
1. Ultra fast travel time
2. Chiller AC - good for the summer
3. Courteous driver / attender
4. Good Movie to watch / time pass
5. Less usage of Horns

Negatives:
1. Aggressive / rash driving
2. No respect to the road / the machine or the fellow drivers
3. Too bumpy ride
4. Maintenance of the bus is "okayish" - could be better
5. Mosquitos - :(

Overall, I would still prefer to go by this 7 PM bus.
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Old 25th May 2013, 23:21   #2785
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

I had to trave to PUNE ( from Mumbai)yesterday in a NITA Mercedes bus and vowed that will never try a bus journey again.



1. Pick up timing. Bus came 15 to 20 min late in both to and fro trips.
2. bus inside was not cleaned, lots of left overs of previous journeys like food items, plastic bottles etc.

3. The staff were not polished,and least cared about the timing. Their only intention was to fill the bus with passengers.

4. Very careless driving. In the return trip, because of the sudden braking, two passengers,who were standing fell down in two different occasions.

It was so disappointing that there is not a plus point to indicate, but many negatives like above
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Old 26th May 2013, 12:35   #2786
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

bbhavan

Where dd u board??? 15 to 20 min late is not unusual if you are boarding from an intermediate point.

I am no fan of Neeta either but the advantages for Neeta when travelling Mumbai Pune are

1 Much more frequencies to the Western suburbs (Borivali/Andheri) than Shivneri which is mostly to Dadar. Pick up points are there every 4-5 Kms.

2 Except for peak time departures and on weekends, you don't need to reserve in advance. Just turn up at the local agent who will give you a ticket for the first departure which is normally 10-15 minutes away max. It is like a hop on hop off service.

Trains as well as the MSRTC Shivneri are much more convenient if you are heading to Dadar, but for Borivali, Andheri etc and esp if you are trvelling to/form Hinjewadi or Aundh, Neeta is not an bad option .

Not that I am a great supporter of these guys - but for a 3-4 hour trip to Pune i can put up with their deficiencies. Anything longer to Bangalore or Hyderabad, I wouuld go for VRL or HKB or Orange.
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Old 26th May 2013, 13:10   #2787
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

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Originally Posted by TKMCE View Post
bbhavan

Where dd u board??? 15 to 20 min late is not unusual if you are boarding from an intermediate point.

For the onward journey, I boarded the bus from Airport Jn, and the bus came at 6.20 AM for the 6.0Am departure.

From Pune, the departure was scheduled from Natraj Hotel at 5.30pm. When I reached there, they told me to go another place,(I dont recollect the place, which is two roads away) as there was some change in the schedule.

Bus came at 6.pm and then departed at 6.15.

And reached Airport at 11.15pm. (traffic jam at Chembur)

If there is a future plan, I will straightway drive to PUNE, (my car was at my native place, this time) and if not, will catch a train.

I am not against Neeta specifically and I don't know about others.

regards
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Old 26th May 2013, 19:09   #2788
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

As promised here is my review for the trip that I did from Hyderabad to Chennai and back. Sorry for the posting, was too busy at work. Had to compile this using the Assembly line feature (Not on Team-BHP but just using MS Word).

Thumbs Up to Kesineni and a Let down by Orange Travels

Hyderabad to Chennai – Kesineni Travels (VL 174)

I had chosen the boarding point at Lakdi ka pool, opposite Hotel Rajdoot (beside BSNL Office, Saifabad). This point was having a pickup van which would take the passengers to the main bus which was waiting for us Gachibowli. The pick van arrived at 17:50 and passengers to Goa, Belgaum, Chennai, Pondicherry, Coimbatore, Salem were asked to board the pickup van. Post the boarding and all verifications done the van left lakdi ka pool at 18:05. Wading through traffic and picking a few passengers en-route the pickup van reached Gachibowli at 18:40. All was fine till Gachibowli post which the wait for the main bus began.

The main bus departure from Gachibowli was scheduled to be at 19:00 as according to Kesineni staff but the bus had not arrived at the point, impatient passengers were bombarding the staff with questions as to why the bus is late but the staff was just smiling and not willing to answer anything. At 19:30 the bus arrives, all passengers settled down and the bus leaves Gachibowli by 19:45. The bus is Volvo 9400, Multi-Axle 2+2 Semi Sleeper, Golden Brown coloured, Manufactured in 2010 (AP 16 TB 6300). The bus looked slightly old on the outside (May be it is due to that golden shade that makes it dull anyways) and on the inside was decent with all seats clean and blankets washed. The bus had clocked 840450.3 kms while I was boarding at Gachibowli.

Intercity Bus travel reviews-20130522-07.22.26.jpg

There were two drivers of which one was in civil uniform and the other was dressed on uniform. For a change both the drivers knew what they were supposed to do and how to do. Neither of them were lugging the engine nor revving the nuts of the engine. A few passengers while boarding the bus had asked the attendant and the driver as to what is the expected time of arrival at Chennai for which none replied and later the attendant said by 07:00 am.

At 21:45, the bus stops for dinner at Miriyalaguda, a small dhaba kind of with decent food but bad hygiene levels. The bus then started on the journey at 22:30 for Chennai. Post the dinner break all the passengers were fast asleep except me, so due to boredom I asked the other driver to sit on my seat for which he was hesitant initially but later agreed. I had booked Seat No.: 2A but it was changed to No.: 48 which is beside 2A (The first row, just behind the driver).Sat beside the driver for almost 3 hours after which the assistant woke up and I went back to my seat. The guys in the first row were advised to wear the seat belt provided for safety reasons. I feel that the ride was bouncy and a lot of body roll. I was being thrown out like a cloth in a washing machine on turns at high speeds and under heavy braking. The suspension was not that in great shape either as all sorts of sounds was emulating from beneath. Throughout the journey it was minimal honking and full usage of dippers with blinkers for overtaking. At 07:10 am, the bus reaches the last stop in Chennai i.e., Koyembedu, which 10 min late from the time quoted by the attendant. Got down the bus and wished a Thank you to the drivers and the attendant for their kind service. Overall the journey was peaceful and great. Big thumbs up to Kesineni Travels from my side.

Chennai to Hyderabad – Orange Tours & Travels (OTT 04)

Had chosen this travels to compare this with Kesineni who has a good brand image in the transport sector. Booked the seat 2A which is the first row behind the driver’s seat.

At 17:15 I received a message from Orange travels reminding me of the journey and giving the registration number details with a hyperlink for GPS tracking of the bus. Brilliant looking white colored well maintained bus with red clean well maintained interiors welcomed us (AP 28 TA 8458) which had clocked 437640.4 km.

Intercity Bus travel reviews-20130524_065343.jpg

Intercity Bus travel reviews-20130523_215444.jpg

The pickup point was Majestic Complex, Koyembedu scheduled at 20:00 hrs. As was pointed out by a BHP’ian ‘Balajird’ who rightly pointed out that the boarding point is the Indian Oil petrol pump which is on the right side when entering the bus terminus. All local operators are having their boarding point at the petrol pump. The boarding was completed while they were filling the tank with fuel. The bus arrived at 19:40 at the petrol pump and was 10 min late as the Hyderabad bound Sleeper (OTT – 08) bus got late due to a passenger. The bus was having 46 passengers out of which 24 were children between the ages of 10 – 15 years. After settling down the bus left Koyembedu at 20:05.

I exactly don’t remember the place where the bus stopped for dinner break where it halted for roughly an hour. There was only one driver for this journey who was professionally dressed and well mannered. The driving mannerism was good and no harsh braking and honking was seen. I was too tired so fell fast asleep and hardly remember anything on the way that could have happened. [Gets interesting now on – GAME CHANGER]

Woke up at 06:30 am and we at Ramoji Film City where the bus stopped by the side. A few phone calls were exchanged while the bus was waiting at the film city. A while later all passengers were asked to get down as the travels had been instructed to drop those 24 children with their two care takers inside the Ramoji film city for a trip. We were 20 of us who were inbound to the Hyderabad city. Listening to this all were furious and started having a fight with the driver for asking us to get down and wait for an Orange travels sleeper bus (OTT – 08) that has started from Chennai towards Hyderabad (AP 28 TA 9596).

Intercity Bus travel reviews-20130524_065348.jpg

At 07:10 am the sleeper arrives and all were asked board that bus that would drop all at the designated dropping points as promised. The worst part is we were asked to travel standing from Ramoji Film city till our dropping points. Overall the experience was good till this incident happened. I am not sure as to opt this travels again for the next time or stick to Kesineni Travels.

Thank you for reading the long post. Hope my review has been useful and will help other users.

Cheers,
Anurag.
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Old 27th May 2013, 19:08   #2789
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

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Originally Posted by a4anurag View Post
I feel that the ride was bouncy and a lot of body roll. I was being thrown out like a cloth in a washing machine on turns at high speeds and under heavy braking.

At 07:10 am, the bus reaches the last stop in Chennai i.e., Koyembedu, which 10 min late from the time quoted by the attendant.

After settling down the bus left Koyembedu at 20:05.
Thanks for your review Anurag, "cloth in a washing machine", this is exactly what I felt as well, I am assuming that this is probably because of the aggressive driving + bad roads. In spite of leaving Gachibowli at 19:45 (the same time my bus left as well), the driver(s) managed to reach Koyambedu by exactly at 6:00 AM, just imagine the speed they drove

Regarding Orange, you are fortunate to have them leave by 20:05 with just 5 minutes delay.

For me, Kesineni any time ahead of Orange.
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Old 27th May 2013, 19:26   #2790
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Originally Posted by balajird View Post

Thanks for your review Anurag, "cloth in a washing machine", this is exactly what I felt as well, I am assuming that this is probably because of the aggressive driving + bad roads.
Mostly the bus was driven fast and all the time late braking causing passengers to be thrown off. Every upward and downward movement of the suspension I couls feel while the bus was accelerating and decelerating.

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Originally Posted by balajird View Post
Just imagine the speed they drove
Caught a couple of times, the speedometer needle hovering near the 110 - 120 kmph mark.

OT: There is a gauge for turbocharger on the speedometer console. Upon acceleration it jumps off to the yellow zone and on crusing its in the centre. Looked awesome and wanted to have such a thing on my Ritz VDi.

Will be choosing Kesineni further on.

Cheers,
Anurag.
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