Your bus ride to BIA to cost more from January 2011
The Volvo buses that ply people to the airport and back have unreasonably high fares and in fact, there may be a further hike in the fares from January 2011.
Earlier, the high tax imposed on diesel was the reason cited for the high fares but now, the blame for the high fare is being shifted to the toll booths that are being developed on the road to the Bangalore International Airport Ltd. (BIAL). According to a senior official at the BMTC, “The toll booths that will be functional near Hebbal will have a direct impact on the bus fares. We are still working on a plan and once we receive a notification from the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI), we will enforce the new fares. We will have to put the burden of the fare on the passengers as Vayu Vajra, the company that manages the airport bus fleet, is already incurring losses. There will definitely be some concession for BMTC buses. We are trying to ensure that there is a minimal escalation with regard to hiking the fares.”
At present, the fares of the Vayu Vajra buses are anywhere between Rs 80 and Rs 150. It is likely that after the hike, the fares will be increased by 10-15 per cent. “We are still in the deciding phase and have to work on the toll rates that will be collected. We are yet to get a notification from the government on these tollbooths. We are hopeful that the tollbooths will be operational from January 2011,” said the project director of the NHAI, Mr R.K. Gupta.
In fact, experts predict that after the bus fares are hiked, the tollbooths will also result in a hike in taxi fares. “Once the toll booth is functional, the taxi fares will shoot up as per the toll collected. We are predicting a hike of Rs 60 and the fares will vary between Rs 560 and Rs 660 for non-AC taxis,” said the general secretary of the Bangalore Tourist Taxi Operators Association (BTTOA), Mr K. Radhakrishna Holla.
He further added that, “The irony is that even after the fare is increased in taxis, if two or three people share a taxi, it is almost the same as the bus fare, which only shows the high cost of public transport in Bangalore.
Source: Deccan Chronicle