Got to read the success story of redbus in a rediff article. Coincidentally my cousin boarded the redbus in what appeared to a last minute journey that was planned and yet made it from Chennai to Bangalore without running around operators. Did all of this online even on the nth minute.
A friend of my did post the redbus story on facebook at about the same time. Was this all as per synchronicity principle as per Deepak Chropra.
Board a bus, book a ticket, check seats and more online
Yes this is what is possible by redBus a company that makes booking tickets online possible. Phanindra Sama started this company leaving his lucrative career.
He started along with 3 other friends from BITS Pilani. Initially started in 2006 with a single bus operator it now has 700 bus operators and a fleet of 10,000 buses and around 5000 tickets each day.
AppleonmyheadMoment : The idea originated when Phanindra was planning to go back to Hyderabad for Diwali holidays but could not get a bus ticket in the last minute. He then went talked to bus agent on the whole process and got talking on what takes to book tickets for a bus. He could see gaps and inefficiencies in the system and knew where he could fit in the whole process and add value to all involved including the bus operators.
What is interesting is they did the initial selling outside the same campuses they once worked in wooing the software crowd to use redbus as an option to buy tickets online. This required them to swallow their pride and get into the entrepreneurial mode which poses many such challenges from time to time.
They were mentored by TiE Bangalore wing on how to monetize their prototype and take it to the next level of big success. Since then they have not turned back but have been enabling people to move travel using their facility.
Talk about financial inclusion in banking they have taken care of this aspect in their business model. People who are not net savvy or do not have access to internet can book tickets using their IVR through their call centers.
They now have 700 operators covering over 10,000 + routes in India. Also possible is paperless ticketing using mticket on your mobile. You can rate your travel and this could help a traveler next time they make the journey and help them avoid a distasteful trip ( one with bed bugs, bad seating , bad behavior etc). Yes all of this in a way improving the bus journey for the traveler in you.
India is best traveled by bus or train as you get to see the sights and the locales that are unique to each place. So what are you waiting take the route the next time you are hit by the travel bug.
For the curious ones on how redbus uses google’s bigQuery to analyze customer behavior and patterns here is the read.