The BEST's open-deck buses have turned out to be an attraction for tourists.
This weekend, the Brihanmumbai Electricity Supply and Transport (BEST) registered a good response for their Heritage open-deck tour as all seats were booked. The BEST officials claim a similar situation prevailed during weekdays as well though the weekend was way better. According to BEST officials, they earned more than Rs 1 lakh since it was launched on November 3. This new refurnished open-deck tourist bus starts from Gateway of India-Mantralaya-Marine DriveChurchgate-CSMT and back. The General Manager of BEST Undertaking, Lokesh Chandra, said, “All the trips operated on Saturday and Sunday were fully booked and tickets were fully sold out. We have earned approximately Rs 1 lakh from it.”
Sources said that people prefer the upper deck that has 32 seats and people get a good view of the city, the old art-deco buildings, and other sights and scenes of Mumbai along the route. People prefer the evening trip inside this open-deck bus to watch and enjoy the sunset. On a daily average, there are around 96-98 patrons who are enjoying the open-deck bus over the last 10 days now.
For Heritage open-deck bus tour, the BEST have tied up with portals and apps that sell online tickets and take bookings in advance. This allows people to choose a seat, time, and date of travel in this open-deck bus. The BEST started the second route on November 12 that starts from National Centre for the Performing Arts (NCPA) and goes up to Girgaum Chowpatty and back to NCPA.
The BEST on November 3 announced heritage tours will resume as they ventured into tourism. The ticket rates are Rs 150 for the upper deck and Rs 75 for the lower deck. The buses are plying twice in the evening. The other route covers the Museum, Vidhan Bhavan, NCPA, with rides starting from the Gateway of India. The BEST Undertaking is also going to revive tourist circuit buses with hop-on, hop-off (Ho-Ho) buses. This means tourists would pick their choice of sites, board and alight the bus and explore the area. Then they can hop onto the subsequent bus for the next stop. All this can be enjoyed after buying a single ticket for the entire trip. This concept is something similar to that seen in European countries availed by tourists.
(To receive our E-paper on whatsapp daily, please click here. We permit sharing of the paper's PDF on WhatsApp and other social media platforms.)