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Old 4th May 2011, 12:45   #796
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

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Originally Posted by coolclouds View Post
Thanks, Booked Kesineni Multiaxle Volvo 7.30pm depart from Koyambedu and the fare is Rs. 1000. Hope it will reach on time.
Hope you reached on time,Do let us know the experience in detail
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Old 4th May 2011, 13:20   #797
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

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Hope you reached on time,Do let us know the experience in detail
The bus left Koyambedu only by 8.30pm against 7.30pm departure. On the way, also got a puncture and lost about 30 mins. Finally, it reached Ameerpet at 8.30am. Overall journey was comfortable.
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Old 4th May 2011, 14:07   #798
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

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The bus left Koyambedu only by 8.30pm against 7.30pm departure. On the way, also got a puncture and lost about 30 mins. Finally, it reached Ameerpet at 8.30am. Overall journey was comfortable.
Do they get a puncture all the time? My experience with Kesineni (read here) also contained a pit stop for tyre change because of a puncture
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Old 5th May 2011, 15:10   #799
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

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Originally Posted by sbkumar View Post
ABT has started giving out a travel kit containing sleep mask and puke bag ( not sure what's the right term ! ). It has started in the last month or so I guess. They genuinely seem to look for ways of improvement. Another thing I noticed is that whenever I take their buses to chennai, they stop in front of CMBT for passengers who want to catch the local buses. For those who are aware of chennai, it's a small additional task for them but a big convenience as otherwise people have to walk down from the private travels' bus stand or get an auto which is quite difficult in the mornings.
They'd been giving that kit right from the time they started the service sometime in 2007 along with a half liter bottle of 'True' Brand drinking water. Later on, the water continued but the kit was stopped. Maybe it has come back now.
Also from 2009, they've been providing calf rests on seats which were not there in the earlier buses.
I'm an extremely satisfied and loyal passenger of ABT and had my first experience of a 'Desi' bus touching 110 kmph in the Che - Ban route.

The overhyped KPN can learn a lesson or two from them.
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Old 5th May 2011, 19:36   #800
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

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Originally Posted by Gansan View Post
Is it necessary to book the tickets in advance? Since the date of travel will be mid-week, can we just go to the bus stand and hop in to any bus?
I wouldn't be very confident of that actually.

A few friends wanted to go to Ooty around the same time last year during the weekdays and it was difficult for them to find tickets.

A KSRTC travel operator said Ooty and Pondicherry (among tourist destinations) are 2 of the hottest routes and often, the tickets are booked for weeks together.
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Old 11th May 2011, 14:23   #801
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Default KaSRTC Airavata from TVM to BLR

It was a planned trip, so I booked my trip in KaSRTC's Airavat service that departs from Thiruvananthapuram at 16:00hrs. I did check the KSRTC (Kerala) site as well, but their bus would depart at 15:00hrs - I had apprehensions of making it to the depot on time, so I gave it a miss.

I reached the TVM Central depot at 15:50hrs on 9th May, and I saw the Aira"vadham" parked there. Showed my ticket to the conductor, and hopped in. Found my seat, shoved the water bottle into the bottle holder, drew the curtains and stretched my legs. So far so good. The seat was comfy. Interiors were the standard Volvo 9400 style. All the seats were upright, so I felt roomy. Had my backpack with me, which wouldn't fit into the hat rack, So i kept it on my lap as it contained my prized lappy as well. I glanced outside, and the conductor was tagging the baggages of other passengers, before keeping them in the cargo hold.

However I noticed that the seat was stained, probably water spilled by someone had resulted in the color of the fabric getting bled. I put the blanket on it, and sat. Pushed the backrest, slightly though, so as not to inconvenience the person in the seat behind mine. A couple were seated in the seats in front of mine. The lady in front pushed her seat's backrest all the way back - now i was kind of jammed. My bag had to be kept upright now. Somehow I found a comfortable position after adjusting the bag and the backrest. It was ok now. The AC vents were good - could be shut close and adjusted for the required air flow. The individual reading lamps were functional too.

The bus started on time, at 16:00hrs. There was heavy traffic inside the city, and by the time it hit NH47, it was already 17:30hrs. Since my seat was towards the rear, I couldn't see what was preventing the driver from picking up speed. The bus entered Alappuzha depot at 20:00hrs. Picked up the last set of passengers and left. They played a Hindi movie (an Ajay Devgan & Akshaye Khanna starrer, don't know the name) which i watched on and off, while flipping pages in my PG Wodehouse, and then a stupid Kannada movie on some superhuman district collector.

At 22:20hrs, there was a dinner break at Hotel Annapoorna, before Mannutthy, Thrissur. It was a clean place. The only thing available was Dosa. The bus resumed journey at 23:00hrs. I don't know what's wrong, but the driver was lugging all the way. Never went above 80kmph. I did not find a dense traffic after Thrissur.

By the time the bus had pulled up for the dinner break, my legs started aching due to the cramped leg space. The foot rest was actually a hindrance for stretching my legs. Add to it the inconvenience caused by the lousy lady who kept adjusting her backrest every now and then.

The bus was supposed to drop me at Madiwala by 07:30hrs, but it was only approaching Hosur by then. Got down at 08:40hrs at Madiwala Ayyappa Temple.

Ticket fare was Rs.831, including the booking charges, tax, convenience fee, blah blah...

The good: clean bus, clean seats, clean place for the dinner break, working reading lamps (this was important for me, as the stupid Kannada movie was getting on to my nerves until it got over), on-time departure from TVM

The bad: Choice of movies, the speakers that went 'whirrrr' for every bass frequency note

The ugly: A driver who never went above 80kmph, poor leg room, more than 1 hour delay in arriving at the destination.

Last edited by silversteed : 11th May 2011 at 14:27.
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Old 11th May 2011, 15:03   #802
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Default Re: KaSRTC Airavata from TVM to BLR

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Originally Posted by silversteed View Post
The ugly: A driver who never went above 80kmph, poor leg room, more than 1 hour delay in arriving at the destination.
I believe this is because the bus is limited by a speed regulator. Others can confirm.
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Old 11th May 2011, 16:01   #803
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

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Originally Posted by libranof1987 View Post
I wouldn't be very confident of that actually.

A few friends wanted to go to Ooty around the same time last year during the weekdays and it was difficult for them to find tickets.

A KSRTC travel operator said Ooty and Pondicherry (among tourist destinations) are 2 of the hottest routes and often, the tickets are booked for weeks together.
I have booked the tickets by Airavat a few days back. The bus originating from Bangalore was half full even then.
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Old 11th May 2011, 16:16   #804
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

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Originally Posted by silversteed View Post
The good: clean bus, clean seats, clean place for the dinner break, working reading lamps (this was important for me, as the stupid Kannada movie was getting on to my nerves until it got over), on-time departure from TVM

The bad: Choice of movies, the speakers that went 'whirrrr' for every bass frequency note

The ugly: A driver who never went above 80kmph, poor leg room, more than 1 hour delay in arriving at the destination.
Well, the movies you got to see are still much much better! I've seen worse!

Actually, the speakers are fine; it is the CD audio quality that is terrible. 8 out of 10 times, there will be a significant lag between audio and video.

They should SERIOUSLY have individual speaker controls.

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Originally Posted by benbsb29 View Post
I believe this is because the bus is limited by a speed regulator. Others can confirm.
They are not governed by speed regulators but the drivers are strictly instructed NOT to cross 80-90 km/hr.

I have travelled very frequently between Pune-Manipal since 2005 and Pune-Bangalore once in '09. The drivers drive merrily at 120 km/hr. I last travelled in Feb this year and I was surprised at how slow the bus moved. Sat next to the driver for a while and chatted; he said drivers have been told to adhere to the 80 km/hr speed limit.

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Originally Posted by Gansan View Post
I have booked the tickets by Airavat a few days back. The bus originating from Bangalore was half full even then.
Airavat is minting money left, right and centre!

I have travelled extensively Pune-Manipal, Bangalore-Manipal, Pune-Bangalore and Chennai-Bangalore. There is simply NO time when you can be assured that you'll get seats at the last moment.

The bus' schedule is amazing!
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Old 11th May 2011, 16:26   #805
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Default Re: KaSRTC Airavata from TVM to BLR

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Originally Posted by silversteed View Post
It was a planned trip, so I booked my trip in KaSRTC's Airavat service that departs from Thiruvananthapuram at 16:00hrs. I did check the KSRTC (Kerala) site as well, but their bus would depart at 15:00hrs - I had apprehensions of making it to the depot on time, so I gave it a miss.
In case of KeSRTC, you can opt to board anywhere, if you place falls on the route of the bus. All you need to do is, call up the conductor (whose number can be taken from the Enquiry or the Control Room), and tell where you'd be standing. They don't mind even if its not a regular point.

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Originally Posted by silversteed View Post
The bus started on time, at 16:00hrs. There was heavy traffic inside the city, and by the time it hit NH47, it was already 17:30hrs. Since my seat was towards the rear, I couldn't see what was preventing the driver from picking up speed. The bus entered Alappuzha depot at 20:00hrs.
Does the Airavat roam around the city? The KeSRTC one directly hits the highway - the get on to the bypass at Chackai, and kept running through. Therefore, their bus is hardly affected by traffic.

And, Does the Airavat go to Alappuzha Bus Station? The KeSRTC one picks passengers from the Medical College (General Hospital) Junction, and then directly heads to the highway.

Quote:
Originally Posted by silversteed View Post
The ugly: A driver who never went above 80kmph, poor leg room, more than 1 hour delay in arriving at the destination.
Sadly, Airavats are very slow now. Drivers have been told to keep low speeds. KeSRTC buses are locked at 90kmph (They have a speed governor!), but the drivers ensure that they maintain that speed, and hence reach destination on time.
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Old 11th May 2011, 16:40   #806
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

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Originally Posted by libranof1987 View Post
Well, the movies you got to see are still much much better! I've seen worse!
I can't understand the language, so I can't really comment.

Quote:
They should SERIOUSLY have individual speaker controls.
Even I would second that but considering the fact that it's a govt corporation, I will simply add that to a dream-list, rather than a wishlist.

Quote:
They are not governed by speed regulators but the drivers are strictly instructed NOT to cross 80-90 km/hr.
Thanks for the info. I'll try not to book Airavat on this route.

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Originally Posted by binaiks View Post
In case of KeSRTC, you can opt to board anywhere, if you place falls on the route of the bus. All you need to do is, call up the conductor (whose number can be taken from the Enquiry or the Control Room), and tell where you'd be standing. They don't mind even if its not a regular point.
I know that fact but the thing is, I was nowhere near to the bus' route until 15:00hrs and i couldn't afford to take a chance. Else I would've happily booked that Garuda (guess it's still called so, even after APSRTC flicked their name)


Quote:
Does the Airavat roam around the city? ...
Sorry, I am not so well versed with Tvm city, moreover, I had the curtains drawn for quite some time. So I do not know where it hit the highway. However I can say that the bus was crawling for most part of the duration until 17:30hrs when I realized that the bus has taken a tight turn and was on the highway.

Quote:
And, Does the Airavat go to Alappuzha Bus Station? The KeSRTC one picks passengers from the Medical College (General Hospital) Junction, and then directly heads to the highway.
It did, on monday. Do not know if they do so generally. Two people got down and 3 got in from Alappuzha bus stand. Is it legal for the Airavat to pick up passengers from Tvm to Alappuzha?

Quote:
Sadly, Airavats are very slow now. Drivers have been told to keep low speeds. KeSRTC buses are locked at 90kmph (They have a speed governor!), but the drivers ensure that they maintain that speed, and hence reach destination on time.
Both the statements are true. Comparing the time taken by KeSRTC's SFs and SDXs, and KaSRTC's Airavats and Rajahamsas to cover the distance between Palakkad and Coimbatore is more than enough proof for that. The former simply rips.

Last edited by silversteed : 11th May 2011 at 16:44.
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Old 11th May 2011, 16:49   #807
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

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Originally Posted by silversteed View Post
Sorry, I am not so well versed with Tvm city, moreover, I had the curtains drawn for quite some time. So I do not know where it hit the highway. However I can say that the bus was crawling for most part of the duration until 17:30hrs when I realized that the bus has taken a tight turn and was on the highway.
I think they went around the city, then. The route from the bus station to Chackai (the place where the bus joins the bypass) is only around 5 kms long. Even with the worst traffic blocks, it shouldn't take an hour and a half (unless the bus kept standing at places for long time).

The city route is around 16kms long i.e., the bus needs to run about 16kms to reach the highway.

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Originally Posted by silversteed View Post
It did, on monday. Do not know if they do so generally. Two people got down there and 3 got in from Alappuzha bus stand. I doubt what they did is legal
Couldn't understand what is illegal here? KaSRTC is legally permitted to enter bus stations, and also carry passengers within Kerala. Similarly, KeSRTC is permitted to carry passengers within Karnataka as well. KeSRTC gets a lot of passengers for their buses towards Mysore, from Bangalore.

If the bus went there on Monday, then it should be doing that regularly - since Alappuzha bus station would be the designated boarding point. For KeSRTC, the boarding point is Medical College Junction.
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Old 11th May 2011, 16:53   #808
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

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Originally Posted by silversteed View Post
Even I would second that but considering the fact that it's a govt corporation, I will simply add that to a dream-list, rather than a wishlist.
It is ultimately a configuration from Volvo; so I don't think it has to do anything with Airavat being Govt. owned.

I've travelled in Volvos run by private cos. too and it is the same throughout.

Have you ever travelled by the Multi-axle Volvo? It is sheer torture if you happen to sit in the middle of the bus. There is a foldable LCD screen (with an in-built speaker) so you can imagine the disturbance it causes!
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Old 11th May 2011, 16:56   #809
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

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Originally Posted by binaiks View Post
I think they went around the city, then. The route from the bus station to Chackai (the place where the bus joins the bypass) is only around 5 kms long. Even with the worst traffic blocks, it shouldn't take an hour and a half (unless the bus kept standing at places for long time). The city route is around 16kms long i.e., the bus needs to run about 16kms to reach the highway.
Well, they did both. So, that explains.


Quote:
Couldn't understand what is illegal here? KaSRTC is legally permitted to enter bus stations, and also carry passengers within Kerala. Similarly, KeSRTC is permitted to carry passengers within Karnataka as well. KeSRTC gets a lot of passengers for their buses towards Mysore, from Bangalore.
I had the hunch that the conductor was getting some money directly. Once it had happened on the Ekm-Palakkad route, way back in 2002. It was really late, and the only bus I found was an SETC Ultra Deluxe (something of that sort) to Salem. The conductor at first did not let me get in, but whatever little Tamil I knew back then was used to my full advantage, and I got in. He collected some money from me but did not give me a ticket.

Quote:
Originally Posted by libranof1987 View Post
It is ultimately a configuration from Volvo; so I don't think it has to do anything with Airavat being Govt. owned.

I've travelled in Volvos run by private cos. too and it is the same throughout.
Some of the private Volvos have the speaker removed from there, and have 4 or 6 better sounding speakers fitted.

Quote:
Have you ever travelled by the Multi-axle Volvo? It is sheer torture if you happen to sit in the middle of the bus. There is a foldable LCD screen (with an in-built speaker) so you can imagine the disturbance it causes!
I've travelled in a multi-axle Volvo, and I was fortunate that they did not play any movie.

Last edited by silversteed : 11th May 2011 at 17:01.
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Old 11th May 2011, 18:39   #810
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Default Re: Intercity Bus travel reviews

Bet is to put on one own Ipod and listen to music/books! Suffered quite many times because of movies (even when I knew the language).

In fact more than movies, they kill you with music (I mean the private buses).

Then on loyalties shifted to KSRTC (when I use the bus).

In fact for the Mumbai-Pune-Bangalore sector, buses are much better than trains!
The rail network is single line and non-electrified.
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