To generate additional revenue for State Express Transport Corporation (SETC) and provide courier service, SETC buses across the State are doubling up as vehicles for courier and parcel service.

Talking to The Hindu, G. Ramesh – Project Manager of 7.C (name for the courier/ parcel service in collaboration with SETC) of Vspeeds Logistics said that the courier/ parcel service had had a soft launch recently.

There had been very good response because of charges for the service and speed with which parcels reached their destination.

The name 7.C was chosen because of the lowest tariff of Rs. 7 and C stands for courier. The dot in between was made to appear as Degree Celsius just as a teaser to arouse curiosity in the minds of the public to ensure good patronage for the new service, Mr.Ramesh added.

The consignor will have to bring the shipment or document to the booking counter and produced an identity card that serves as a photo/ address proof and the consignee will have to produce a similar identity card and take delivery of the products.

The strength in partnering with SETC is that on some sectors, 7.C was able to ensure same day delivery as there were frequent bus services during the day and till late night on some of these sectors, Mr.Ramesh added.

Initially, the services are to Chennai, Bangalore, Salem, Tiruchirapalli, Madurai, Coimbatore, Erode, Tirupur, Tirunelveli, Thoothukudi, Vellore and Karur.

Services are likely to be extended to destinations such as Guruvayoor, Ernakulam, Thiruvananthapuram and Tirupati.

At present, the services are available only from the place where the SETC bus begins a journey and to its destination. SETC’s strength is about 19,000 routes.

As the transportation logistics/ investment cost is reduced in addition to the human resource, the courier/ parcel charges are fixed low.

Mr.Ramesh said that any document the charge irrespective of the district will be Rs. 7 and for every additional 250 gram it would be Rs. 2.50.

For parcels, the ceiling is 70 kg. The basic slab is 2.5 kg and the charge is Rs. 25 (even if the consignment weighed less than 2.5 kg) and for every additional 250 grams, the charge would be Rs. 2.50 (working out to Rs. 10 per additional kg).

There is a 25 per cent discount for ex-servicemen and differently abled. Students sending study materials could book up to 7 kg at a flat rate of Rs. 16.

Vspeeds Logistics has picked up the contract on a bidding process and it ensured substantial revenue for SETC by making use of its unused space on its fleets.

7.C would soon have a website of its own and SETC counters will furnish details of the service.

For any information, the public could visit the SETC depot/ branches or could dial 95510-77777.