Staff Reporter

RTC to take up survey for the changing trend in passenger habits

Sale of general bus passes down since the past five months

HYDERABAD: Travelling in ordinary city buses is passe for the regular commuters in twin cities and they appear to prefer travelling by the Metro Expresses. This changing trend in passenger habits has become discernible with the dip in sale of the General Bus Ticket (GBT), while the sale of Metro Express Pass is going up.

Curious over the phenomena, RTC authorities are planning to take up a study to understand the sudden preference of the Metro Express bus passes. The GBTs, more popular as ‘Bus Pass’ are sold at Rs. 340 a month, while the Metro Pass is sold at Rs. 440 a month.

On an average, the sale of general bus passes used to hover around 1.30 lakh a month and since last five months the sales have dipped down by 12, 000 passes and presently is fluctuating around 1.18 lakh. In case of Metro passes, the sales were about at 65,000 a month and have now shot up by nearly 10,000.

Though authorities are happy over the increasing popularity of Metro Expresses, they are slightly concerned over the decrease in sale of general passes. In a bid to zero in on the reasons, the study is being taken up.

RTC city zone operates 2,950-odd buses, of which, nearly 2,300 are ordinary type, 550 – Metro Express and 110 – Metro Deluxe.

The reason for commuters preferring Metro Express bus over ordinary bus is seating comfort and faster travelling, since an ordinary bus has more stops on a particular route than a Metro Express bus plying on the same route. Officials also reason out that the fall in sale of general passes could be due to passengers upgrading to Metro Express tickets or preferring private transportation. It could also be due to lack of the ordinary buses. “The survey would help determine the reasons and improve service to commuters,” P.V.D. Jaya Shanker Prasad, Hyderabad Zone ED, said.

During the survey, bus depot employees would distribute a questionnaire to commuters at major bus stops everyday and collect feedback. The questions pertain to what kind of buses are preferred and the reasons for shifting from general pass to metro pass. It would take about two minutes to fill in the questionnaire. The survey is to be conducted for a fortnight.