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Omni bus operators see no threat from Tejas Express

File photo: The Tejas Express

Some omni bus operators in Tiruchi have their fingers crossed after the launch of the Tejas Express, the luxury train linking Chennai and Madurai.

The journey time in the fully air-conditioned train between Chennai and Tiruchi is less than four and a half hours.

The omni buses take at least an hour more on the route.

It is only a few days since the train was introduced. There is still time to gauge whether the luxury train will impact the business of omni buses, Balu, president of Tiruchi Omni Bus Operators’ Association, said.

In all probability, the business for omni buses will not be impacted much as the passengers enjoy the convenience of choosing their time of travel, he said adding that unlike the luxury train, the fare of omni buses suits middle-class travellers.

According to railway reservation staff, the patronage for the train is higher during the week-ends.

Any new train in the luxury segment requires considerable time for full occupancy, he said.

In their feedback, a good number of passengers of the train had said that the occupancy will be more if on-board food was not compulsory.

According to an executive of a tourism and hospitality firm, the luxury train is bound to attain good occupancy during week-ends and holidays since it is well suited for Kodaikanal-bound tourists from Chennai.

For instance, tourists planning short trips will be able to travel in comfort and spend the second half of Saturday and the first half of Sunday in the hill station, sans the weariness of travel, he said.

Even during week days, visiting Kodaikanal for business meetings has been made easy in the fully air-conditioned train that offers amenities like on-board Wi-fi, CCTV camera system, modular toilets and ergonomic seats.


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