IRCTC to launch road package to Tirupati


Lord Venkateshwara

Spurred by the tremendous response received for its rail package tour to Tirupati, the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) is now venturing upon a road package to the temple town.

Slated to kickstart next on August 16 from Bangalore City station, the package will be an integrated one, with boarding, lodging, food and darshan arranged for the pilgrims. “For the maiden trip, 12 passengers will be taken to Tirumala hills by an air-conditioned tempo traveller, almost resembling a mini-bus,” said S Gagarin, Chief Regional Manager (CRM) of IRCTC, South Western Railway Division.

The decision follows public demand for different timings for the packages. The Mysore-Tirupati Passenger, presently used for the rail tour package leaves the City station by 8 p.m. and the pilgrims are taken for darshan around 10.30 am, he added. Some devotees have demanded a package, which departs later from the City, while some were keen on a darshan during early morning, which is considered more auspicious.  

The road package, will leave the City by 9 pm and touch Tirumala hills in the wee hours of the following day at around 2.30 am.

“This package is planned in such a way that devotees are taken for the Archana Aradhana Darshan, between 4 am and 6 am,” Gagarin said.  This will be followed by a visit to goddess Padmavathi temple at Tiruchanoor. The return trip to the City will begin by 11 am.

The package will be available on all days of the week, barring Friday. The cost works out to Rs 1,650 for an adult and Rs 1,200 for a child.

Additional tempo

“In case of an increase in number of individual bookings each day or bulk bookings, an additional tempo could be deployed or one or more Volvo buses could be arranged,” he added.

IRCTC is eyeing an additional Rs 60 lakh to its annual earnings with this venture. Though IRCTC arranges packages primarily through trains, road packages to spots like Coorg and Ooty have got a good response from the public.

Those interested in details can call up the numbers 22960014/17, 9741435809 or 9731647952 or access the website www.railtourismindia.com

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