Updated: September 20, 2021 8:08:49 am
Comfortable recliner seats, shower rooms, a business centre, buffets – the executive lounge at the New Delhi Railway Station, recently inaugurated by IRCTC, is slowly drawing in passengers.
The lounge, designed on the lines of those at airports, is located on the first floor near platform 1.
The entry charge is Rs 150, after which passengers would be charged a tariff of Rs 99 per hour. For this charge, travellers can access the normal seating zone, charging points, free WiFi, and are given complimentary coffee. Those who opt for the recliner chairs have to pay Rs 500 for two hours.
The buffet ranges from Rs 250 to Rs 350, depending on whether it is vegetarian or non-vegetarian, while the shower and change costs Rs 200. The lounge also has a business centre for those who need to use a computer and require printouts; this costs Rs 100 an hour.
There are signages directing passengers to the lounge. These, however, are only in English but a Hindi board will be put up soon. It has a capacity of 120 people at a time. Once it exceeds this, entry is stopped.
This is the second lounge of its kind in Delhi. The first was at Platform no 16 of the station, which has been operational since 2016. Other such lounges are present at Agra, Jaipur, Sealdah, Ahmedabad, and Madurai railway stations.
Among those at the lounge on Sunday was Piyush Ranjan (38), who travelled from Amritsar to Delhi and had a few hours to kill before his train to Asansol. Deciding to meet a friend here, he said the area was perfect for travellers like him who have to stop at Delhi for a while. However, he faced some trouble locating the lounge and had to ask around for directions.
Another group who was travelling from Pune to Dehradun via Delhi decided to spend their three hours in the lounge. Sakshi Pisal (20) said they opted for the package, which included food and seating.
The travellers, however, thought the prices were slightly on the higher side, especially for the recliner seats.
Lounge manager Sunil Goswami said they have seen around 200 passengers since the inauguration on September 16, with numbers are increasing gradually as word spreads. He had managed the lounges in Jaipur and Agra when they started, which are full on most days.
The lounge also has an open kitchen that serves Indian, continental, and Chinese. Sunil said the menu keeps changing. On Sunday, there was idly, dosa, soup, dal, paneer, salad, and gulab jamun.
A bakery is in the making and as of now, the section sells packed food items such as beverages and chips which can be seen in any other IRCTC canteen.
A new food court has also been inaugurated at platform 16 and has been drawing a sizable number of customers. Open 24×7, it has several food outlets such as Haldiram’s, Wow Momo, KFC, Roll Station among other popular joints.
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