Onward and return journey ticket booking not possible
Sudheendra R. on Tuesday went to Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation's (KSRTC) online booking counter in Attavar to book a ticket for journey to Bellary on December 23. He opted to book a ticket for the return journey and avail the 10 per cent discount that was offered.
The operator entered all the details and printed the ticket. While she got only the ticket for the onward journey, she could not get the return journey ticket.
After several attempts, she pleaded her inability to book the return ticket and asked Mr. Sudeendra to visit some other booking counter.
Mr. Sudheendra then went to another counter, but to no avail. “We face this problem when we go for booking the onward and return tickets,” the person manning the counter said. He then offered to book two separate tickets which meant that Mr. Sudheendra had to forego the discount.The experience of Vijay Kumar B., a resident of Kulashekara, was different.
On Saturday, he went to an online booking agent to get eight tickets for onward and return journey to Bangalore. When the agent faced problem, she refused to book the tickets and Mr. Kumar opted for a private bus.
Mr. Sudeendra and Mr. Kumar were among the many commuters in Mangalore who had been denied of the discount offered by the KSRTC while booking onward and return journey tickets. The booking agents put the blame on the server of Awatar, the KSRTC's online booking software. “We face this problem especially when the server is down. We immediately call Awatar office in Bangalore to cancel the ticket and save deduction of amount from our account. Only when the customer agrees we go for booking of separate tickets,” said an online booking agent in Balmatta. The agents said the capacity of the Awatar's server had not been strengthened to meet the demand of the private booking counters.
“The problem is acute in the evening. At times, we cannot book even onward journey tickets. We have paid cancellation charges from our pockets,” said an agent from Pandeshwar.
However, the KSRTC officials said the problem was more related to the agents than the server. As the software used by the agents was customised, training had been given for the way tickets were to be booked.
“If the booking is done by those not trained by us, there will be such problems,” said a KSRTC official.
As many as 98 KSRTC online ticket booking counters were operating in Mangalore and Udupi districts.