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BMTC to launch another luxury service soon

Anil Kumar Sastry

It will also cover the IT and BPO installations



PLUSH: A view of the inside of the new BMTC bus. — Photo: K. Murali Kumar

BANGALORE: Buoyed by the success of its plush air-conditioned service, Bangalore Rounds, Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC) will soon introduce one more on similar lines.

The second air-conditioned service is likely to cover Bangalore's information technology (IT) and business process outsourcing (BPO) installations among other tourist attractions, according to a senior BMTC official. This service is not profit-oriented but to help people get a quick grasp of what makes Bangalore tick.

A year after its introduction, Bangalore Rounds is a hit with the new Curitiban (the new service is conceptualised on the lines of the one operated in Curitiba, Brazil) model attracting tourists and earning profits, a far cry from the not-so-popular Cauvery — the open-roof double-decker bus — introduced earlier.

The sleek body and elegant interiors is the handiwork of in-house BMTC technicians.

Bangalore Rounds offers a comfortable environment for tourists who wish to do the city in a day in an air-conditioned ambience, wide windows, an entertainment system, including video and a tourist guide-cum-driver.

Apart from regular 32 plush seats (charged at Rs. 250 per adult), the bus comprises three wide "golden" seats at the rear (charged at Rs. 350).

"We did not intend to make profit while introducing the service," said the official. However, the patronage was such that the service has been earning profits and has earned revenue of Rs. 2 lakh and Rs. 1.61 lakh during December 2006 and January 2007, respectively. While the cost per kilometre for this service was Rs. 50.80, the earning per kilometre ranged from Rs. 80 to Rs. 119. BMTC also introduced a non-air-conditioned service, a few months ago, which is picking up.

Bangalore Rounds 1 is operated from Kempegowda Bus Station from 9 a.m. every day.

It covers Tipu Palace, Kote Venkataramanaswamy Temple, Bull Temple, Gavigangadhareshwara Temple, Lal Bagh, Visvesvaraya Museum, Vidhana Soudha, High Court, Indira Gandhi Musical Fountain/Planetarium, ISKCON, Prasanna Anjaneyaswamy Temple.

Bangalore Rounds 2 (non-AC) priced at Rs. 150 per adult, also starts from Kempegowda Bus Station and has Ragigudda Temple, Meenakshi Temple and Bannerghatta National Park in addition to other places covered by Bangalore Rounds 1.

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