Showing posts from October, 2012

KPN Travels: Madurai to Bangalore Day time Volvo B9R

Booking tickets for my Madurai-Bangalore trip was a very simple process – no confusions and no hassles. There was only one operator with a day trip, and that was KPN. I wanted to try VRL or SRS, but neither of them had a day trip and I did not have the option of taking a night trip (I had to be in office on time the next morning, and I could not risk taking a night bus). The ticket was booked through the KPN Travels’ website. I chose Seat #43 for my ride. A few days before my trip, a few photos appeared on the net showing a brand new bus running the trip I had booked on. I was excited, and was looking forward for the trip in a new bus - but did it really happen? October 02, 2012: A few hours before my journey, I headed out to MIBT to meet a good accomplice of mine and a fellow bus fan. We spent some good moments at MIBT and then returned to my hotel room. I had confirmed earlier in the day that my bus would depart from Periyar only (considering my experience with SRM). The

My first on SRM, and first on iShift B9R

Booking a ticket for my Chennai-Madurai leg was no less than a heap of confusion. I had three day journey options – SRM, KPN and Parveen (in the order of departure time). I have never tried the services of SRM or Parveen – so the tie was between them.   SRM departs at 0955hrs, while Parveen leaves only at 1315hrs. I initially booked on Parveen. But later, the late arrival at Madurai gave me jitters, as it could jeopardise all my further travel plans. Not wanting to take the risk, I cancelled the ticket in Parveen and booked in SRM. I and my friend Jayasankar were travelling together. The cancellation process in Parveen was a bit confusing – the website kept throwing tantrums very often. Finally, at the end, the ticket got cancelled, but I got no refund! Their customer care centre in Chennai was very helpful in sorting out the issue, and my refund was arranged through their Bangalore (Madiwala) office. September 30, 2012: After the journey from Chennai, I quickly freshened u

The new Volvo 9400PX: My experience on it

One fine morning, updates on Facebook scream out that KSRTC is launching India’s longest intercity coach – the all new Volvo 9400PX. This bus is 14.5M long, and is based on the all new B11R chassis powered by a 370-hp 11 litre rear mount engine, with Volvo’s famous iShift automated manual transmission system. There was no news of the bus for a few days after it was inaugurated – but one day it appeared on the KSRTC reservation portal as “Airavat New I-Shift Multi-Axle”. I made a plan to travel on the bus with a good friend of mine – but later, both of us had difficulties and we had to drop the plan. To make up for our inability to travel, we spend a day to shoot the bus. A few days went past. A trip planned long ago was dug up from the archives – the planning was quick. Trains were unavailable – and, as if it was godsend, I decided to travel via Chennai. The PX was an obvious choice for the journey. The planning of the journey ahead was a bit tricky and I was in a fix for qu