Bengaluru: A large number of people in India are planning inter-city bus travel within a month of the lifting of travel restrictions, according to a randomised online survey of over 10,300 customers of redBus, India's largest online bus ticketing platform.
Nearly 57 per cent of the respondents are planning to travel within a month post the lockdown. However, there is a high standard of expectation on the implementation of measures to make buses safe for travel with over 79 per cent wanting deep cleaning and sanitisation of buses after every trip.
Hand sanitisers, mandatory masks and temperature screening for all passengers are next in expectations for bus travel. Over 78 per cent of the respondents want the implementation of hygienic conditions at boarding points and 70 per cent want social distancing protocols to be implemented at boarding points.
"The survey does underscore the fact that given the adherence to safety protocols, bus travel is possibly one of the safest options for travel since the number of travellers are fewer, checks can be done individually and the whole factor of pick up and drop as close to home as possible minimises the number of contacts throughout the journey," said redBus Chief Executive Officer Prakash Sangam.
In addition, online booking further reduces the number of contact points as people can book bus tickets directly from their home. Further, there is a heightened awareness of personal hygiene and safety measures which is important for the travel to be safe.
"The large number of people waiting to travel not only points to the need but also the importance it has for the revival of economic activity as very few of them would be travelling for leisure," said Sangam.
The survey also showed that passengers put a very high consideration on hygiene, sanitation and disinfection -- over 73 per cent -- and social distancing (63 per cent) and much lower consideration to traditional factors such as travel cost (22 per cent), comfort (21 per cent) and punctuality (18 per cent).
The survey was conducted among redBus customers across India. Only 5 per cent of the respondents were willing to postpone their travel to over six months while the rest had plans to travel within that period.