Bengaluru to Chennai: asianXpress Scania Metrolink

I didn't have too many options when I made this booking. This was a quick trip to Chennai - I'd be returning the same evening, and I was on the look out for buses that would drop me at Porur, where I had some work. After going through most options, I decided to pick-up asianXpress, who had a bus that went to Porur. I booked my ticket through the operator's own website.

Sometime towards evening on the day before my journey (the same day that I booked my ticket), I received a message saying the bus was cancelled, and I must call up the operator for update regarding the refund. I quickly looked at other alternatives - there were none that could drop me at Porur, and I had to be content with a drop at Koyambedu instead. I called up the phone number provided - but there was no response. I continued search for other options - but the buses were either too early for me, or too late. A while later, I received a call back from the operator - the person at the other end informed me that he could give me seat in their earlier bus (departs at 0400hrs, compared to my original booking which was at 0500hrs) - I agreed, since I had no other go.

September 13, 2019:
My day started off with the phone alarm going off at 0245hrs! I rushed with getting ready and started off from my brother's place in south Bengaluru at around 0315hrs. I had booked a cab, which dropped me at Madiwala by around 0345hrs. I received a call from the operator as I got off the cab - the bus was parked on the other side of the road. I got into the bus soon later. The interiors were fresh, and was quite cool already. Some devotional songs were being played at the time, along with the welcome video of the operator. Water bottles and Blankets were kept in every seat.

The bus started off from Madiwala, exactly, at 0400hrs. The driver was quick - we passed Silk board, and took the elevated highway to Electronic city. There was a little traffic at the toll gate - primarily due to a truck getting stuck at the toll gate. We stopped for passenger pick-up after the toll gate (0414hrs) - the wait for passengers was prolonged (we were almost 11 minutes before time at the pick-up point). We started off from Electronic City at 0430hrs. I was half asleep already. The driver was quite fast from the word go - but the driving was very disciplined in terms of lane changes and signalling. We got to Hosur at 0454hrs - went below the flyover and stopped opposite the bus station. This pick-up took some time, and we got moving only at 0504hrs. I had a nice deep sleep after Hosur.
The bus: KA-09-AB-6162

I vaguely remember the bus stopped at Krishnagiri for pick-up (did not notice the time) - I became aware of this because the occupant of the seat next to me joined here. I slept until we got to Vellore (0711hrs). The driver was maintaining pace even at this point - traffic started getting thicker as we neared Chennai. We got to Sriperumbudur by 0837hrs, and began crawling towards Chennai. Things were a little better till Poonamalle (0900hrs). Traffic got really thick after Poonamallee - it came down to a crawl as we neared Madhuravoyal. We got to Madhuravoyal by 0937hrs, and then continued crawling towards Chennai. We came to a standstill as we neared Koyambedu - we got to Rohini Theatre by 0955hrs. I finally got off the bus outside Koyambedu Omni bus terminus by 0958hrs - 28 minutes late. The end-to-end ride took 5 hours and 58 minutes.

Remarks: The bus, KA-09-AB-6162 had a little over 5.43 Lakh kilometres on the odo. The bus was a little closer to 2 years old, and was kept was really good shape. The crew were great - amazing driving, with minimal honking, no rash braking or overtakes. The bus didn't seem to have over speeded anywhere. The bus did not take a break anywhere on the way - at least a 'leak' break would've been great. I liked the experience, and really look forward to trying them again! 
Branded water bottle..

Amenities:
Blanket: Yes
Water: Yes
Snacks: No
Charging Point: Available, worked.
Entertainment: Available, songs and a welcome video played.

Ratings:
Maintenance: 5/5
Cleanliness: 5/5
Driving: 4.5/5
Crew behaviour: 5/5
Punctuality: 4.75/5

Overall: 4.9/5

Pros: Great Service, Excellent crew.
Cons: Needs a break

Will I take this service again? Absolutely

Comments

rahulvijayev said…
Could never forget my trip in Asian Xpress AC Sleeper, boarded from Bommasandra at around 4.45pm, the bus did fuelling at Bommasandra itself and left at around 5.15pm. We were at Koyembedu at 10.45pm with a delay of just 10 minutes. Very punctual.

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