Amidst the recent imposition of stricter regulations on the daytime movement of heavy vehicles in the city, private luxury bus operators have significantly increased fares, particularly on routes to Surat and Mumbai. The surge in prices is a response to heightened restrictions prompted by a series of fatal accidents in the city, leading authorities to implement stringent measures. Notably, private luxury bus operators traveling from the city’s CTM (Express Highway) to Surat and Mumbai have raised ticket prices dramatically, ranging from Rs 1,500 to Rs 2,000. This marks a substantial increase compared to the standard rates of Rs 400 and Rs 600 for the respective routes.
The impact of these escalated fares is palpable, with passengers expressing distress over the financial burden. Prakash Keskar, who is traveling to Surat, voiced his concern about the limited alternatives, stating, “With GSRTC buses fully booked, there is no alternative but to opt for private buses. However, the steep fares, ranging from Rs 1,500 to Rs 1,700, from Ahmedabad CTM to Surat are unaffordable. Normally, the fare for this route is around Rs 400 to Rs 600.” This sentiment is echoed by the passenger, who is traveling to Mumbai from Ahmedabad. According to the passenger, “Post-Diwali vacation, there’s an upsurge in commuters. There are no options for reservations. Exploiting this situation, private bus operators have doubled the fare.” He added that the sharp increase in luxury bus prices has sparked outrage among other commuters, impacting their ability to travel affordably.
The escalation in ticket prices is not only causing financial strain on individual commuters but has also ignited dissatisfaction among the broader traveling community. The surge in fares, coupled with the lack of viable alternatives, is creating an atmosphere of frustration and inconvenience for those who rely on these bus services for their daily commute. The issue underscores the importance of a balanced approach to regulating heavy vehicle movement, ensuring both safety and affordability for the commuting public.