Tuesday, December 1, 2020

Unlock 4.0: The Bus Travel Demand Supply Conundrum

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Bus travelers  across the country are eagerly waiting to undertake their travel for their various professional and personal needs as per the trends being mapped by the Abhibus Demand Supply Conundrum report. With recommendations from MHA to ease interstate travel, the industry is witnessing massive demand for travel from customers across the country and has witnessed tremendous spikes over the last few weeks.

However the supply side remains a huge dampener due to shortage of buses in most routes, being operated by various RTC’s. Private operators have opened up the routes despite a loss making proposition largely due to having to maintain social distancing norms – impacting the inventory of seats and additional expenses being incurred for maintaining safe travel conditions that include frequent sanitization & cleaning and placing/replacing hand sanitizers for customers use. 

As per the report by Abhibus, a leading online ticketing aggregator in India, the top 5 most searched cities by volume are Chennai, Hyderabad, Delhi/NCR, Mumbai and Goa. Chennai has witnessed one of the highest demands in terms of route searches of 600,000 weekly searches with Bangalore-Chennai and Hyderabad-Chennai each accounting for 300k weekly searches. Hyderabad due to limited routes is also most sought after on the list with 700,00 weekly searches. These include Vijayawada-Hyderabad(125k), Vizag-Hyderabad(90k), Bangalore-Hyderabad(160K) amongst top cities from where commuters are looking to travel to Hyderabad.

Despite large scale availability of bus routes and options Delhi/NCR has half a million  weekly  searches mostly from UP/Punjab that includes Ludhiana-Delhi(62K), Amritsar-Delhi(88K), Chandigarh-Delhi(95K), Lucknow-NCR (37K), Kanpur-NCR (18K) as key sources of traffic to Delhi. Mumbai has about 200,000 weekly searches mostly from outside Maharashtra, Hyderabad-Mumbai, Bangalore-Mumbai, Goa-Mumbai, Indore-Mumbai, Ahmedabad-Mumbai are the top searched routes in this sector. Goa continues to be a popularly searched destination with over 2,50,000 searches a week, searches in 1st week of September were mostly from Hyderabad (55K), Mumbai(12K), Bangalore, (32K).

Commenting on these trends Mr. Rohit Sharma, Chief Operating Officer, Abhibus said, “Most of these top destinations are seeing 3-5X increased interest compared to last September. Customers are waiting for opening up of routes to predominantly undertake essential travel and to some extent tourism. While Delhi/NCR has ample supply other states like Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra and to some extent Telangana have not yet opened interstate travel. We are witnessing an increase in the pent-up demand on a week on week basis.”  

The Abhibus Demand Supply Conundrum report has captured trends from Delhi/NCR, Bangalore, Maharashtra, UP, AP/Telangana, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat and details the demand, from origin to destination, count of services pre and post Covid.

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