Frequency of bus travel to return to its pre-Covid levels: RedBus

Bengaluru: People in India seem to have overcome the anxieties of the pandemic and are looking forward to a year of regularity, according to a randomized online survey of over 9,000 customers of online bus ticketing platform redBus.

The survey shows intent for a higher frequency of travel over the next three to six months with 48 percent of respondents seeking to travel at least once a month, taking the travel intent back to pre-Covid levels when it was around 47 percent.

Hill stations are where people in India will be traveling this year for leisure followed by beaches with 46 percent of respondents opting for the mountains and 28 percent to the seashores.

When it comes to religious travel, Tirupati (26 percent) and Shirdi (12 percent) are the most popular pilgrimage destinations followed by Madurai, Nashik, and Varanasi.

With intercity travel gradually inching back to its pre-Covid levels, the most important factors for outstation travel apart from safety and hygiene are having a comfortable journey, reliable schedules and punctuality, and travel costs.

redBus said a behavioral shift that has been evident post-Covid is the preference for online bus booking going up. This was evident in the survey with 95 percent of respondents mentioning that they will prefer to book their bus tickets online now.

Airconditioned buses are also making a comeback with their preference levels going up to 50 percent compared to 39 percent as per a similar survey done earlier in June 2020.

“Results from this survey have not only provided a unique insight into the bubbling demand for travel in India but also reaffirmed the notion that the industry’s strong comeback is set to move into a higher gear in the months ahead,” said redBus CEO Prakash Sangam.

“A majority of the people now prefer to book bus tickets online as travelers take advantage and stick to the habit of transacting online from the comfort of their homes.”

redBus was founded in 2006 and is the world’s largest online bus ticketing platform. After having solved complex problems of bus customers in India, redBus also launched operations in Singapore and Malaysia in 2015 and acquired a majority stake in Peru-based bus ticketing platform Busportal (now redBus.Pe) in the subsequent year.

With this acquisition, redBus successfully launched operations in Latin American markets, Peru, and shortly thereafter Colombia.

The platform has globally sold more than 180 million bus tickets till date and has a customer base of around 20 million users. redBus is now part of the MakeMyTrip group, which is the largest travel aggregator in India with offerings across categories like flights, hotels, and holiday packages. 

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