Everything's booked up!

Everything's booked up!

Last minute

Everything's booked up!

Bangalore City Bus Stand

Christmas and New Year fall on weekends this year. And people have already chalked out elaborate plans to make most of the holidays.

Tickets on buses, trains and planes have been booked well in advance and those lining up at the last minute to book tickets have been left in the lurch.

The waiting list on the train is endless and a few buses have even upped their fares and introduced new buses to make maximum profit.

The corporate community doesn’t mind paying as it doesn’t want to waste any opportunity to cash in on the time available.

A couple of special trains have also been introduced for the season. But those which make maximum profit are the buses. 

The private bus owners introduce new fleet of buses and charge extra fares for their services. They charge Rs 1,000 over and above the normal fare.

People, who have travel plans, say they booked one month or even two months in advance because it’s easier to get bus, train tickets and hotel rooms.

Nitin, an IT employee says he booked tickets to his hometown in Manipal in the first week of December.

“I usually go online to the KSRTC and IRCTC booking slot. I don’t get a direct bus home and have to change buses in between,” says Nitin, who usually takes week off work during Christmas and New Year. 

Ramesh Valecha, a businessman, plans a vacation with his friends and family every year.  Last year they went to Goa but this year due to the lack of availability of tickets Ramesh has decided to spend his Christmas and New Year here in the City, “I usually book 15 days in advance. It’s so much easier to get tickets on buses. This year, I have planned to go in the second week of January. I think it will be easier to get tickets then,” says Ramesh who always prefers travelling in a big group.  

Smitha Prasad, a second year degree, student of Mount Carmel College says she finds it difficult to get tickets to travel home during the season.

 “I have to book one month in advance and the rates are hiked up during Christmas. They charge at least Rs 500 more than the usual fare,” says Smitha. The travel agents in the City say that they are introducing new buses.

The private transporters make 50 per cent more profit during this season. Bhanu Prakash of Raja Rajeshwari Enterprises says it’s tough to get tickets.

“Most tickets on trains are on the waiting list and buses are totally blocked. While the normal bus rates are between Rs 250 and Rs 1000, the hiked rates are Rs 2,500 and above. There are tickets sold in black as well,” says Bhanu.

John of Infant Travels observes that there is a rush for tickets among the corporates and techies in the City.

“The IT crowd gets limited leave and they want to make the maximum use of their leave. They don’t mind paying a few extra bucks to get away from the City,” says John.