Private Train Fares To Be Fixed By Private Firms, Compared With AC Bus, Flight Fares
The Government will let the private players set private railway passenger fares when the private railway services will begin, said VK Yadav, Chairman of India’s Railway Board.
Read on to find out more…
Private Companies Operating Railways Will Decide Their Fares!
In July, Indian Railways, for the first time, opened the railway sector for private players.
Railways had formally invited Request For Qualifications (RFQ) for participation from private entities on 109 pairs of routes through 151 modern trains.
Bloomberg quoted Yadav, “Private players have been given the freedom to fix fares in their own way.”
Yadav also said, “Air-conditioned buses and planes also operate on those routes, and they have to keep that in mind before setting fares.”
It will be interesting to see whether these private train fares will be cheaper or more expensive than bus fares or airfares.
User Fees Will Make Tickets Costly!
Previously, Yadav had announced that rail fares will increase as passengers will be charged with user fees, similar to airport development fees that the airlines and airports charge on the air tickets. The fees will be included in the passenger ticket itself.
However, these ‘user fees’ will be charged at major stations and redeveloped stations with high footfall.
According to Yadav, these user fees will be initially used to improve the services at the railway stations and later will be charged prior to any work being completed.
This user fee will be charged at around 10%-15% of the 7000 railway stations in India.
As quoted by PTI, Yadav said, “We are going to keep a very small amount for the user charge. We will issue a notification for the user charge for all stations including both those that are getting redeveloped and those that are not.”
It can be assumed that the private trains’ fares are going to be pricey with the technology and comfort they have claimed they will offer.
Will user fees coupled with private train railway fare make traveling by railways expensive than before? Will these expensive private trains again cause crowded public-sector trains?
So the main question remains, will the introduction of the private players, in reality, reduce the waiting lists and have trains available on-demand as claimed by Yadav?