With Diwali around the corner, there is a rush among Chennaiites to book train and bus tickets at the last minute for the weekend-long festival that falls on October 27.
While train tickets got exhausted no sooner than reservations were opened in June, most citizens seem to prefer booking buses since the waiting period for ticket confirmation is relatively shorter.
The Tamil Nadu State Transport Corporation (TNSTC) had announced in September that it would operate over 11,000 buses within the state to cater to the Diwali rush. Bookings will begin from October 23.
However, with most people opting for private aggregators over government buses, the fares have risen drastically. Most aggregators are charging over Rs 1500 as minimum fare, exclusive of taxes, for a one-way ticket.
Despite the government warning against steep pricing, private bus operators have done little to abide by it. Booking tickets via apps such as Red Bus, Makemytrip only brings down the amount by a trifle.
Most people generally book tickets months in advance and even then the average fare ranges upwards of Rs 1000. With two weeks to go for the festival, the prices are set to touch Rs 2000.