Hearing a lot about Train 18 or Vande Bharat Express of late? Here’s everything you need to know about it and more.
Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it’s India’s fastest train.
Originally called Train 18, the fastest engineless train from Indian Railways has been renamed Vande Bharat Express in order to acknowledge the train’s made-in-India status. The Vande Bharat Express was completely built in India by Indian engineers at the Integral Coach Factory (ICF) in Chennai. It took 18 months and a total expense of Rs. 97 crores to build the train.
Considered as the successor to Shatabdi Express, the 16-coach Vande Bharat Express is the first engine-less train in the country. And it will be replacing the Shatabdi Express in the near future. Vande Bharat Express will be starting services soon, post the Budget 2019 sitting. The fully air-conditioned train will run between Varanasi and Delhi with stops at Kanpur and Prayagraj. It is expected to run for five days in a week, excluding Mondays and Thursdays for maintenance purpose.
With the ability to reach up to 200 kmph, this train is all set to cover the 755 kms between Delhi and Varanasi in just eight hours. The current fastest train takes up to 11.5 hours to cover the same distance.
Additional Reading: Travel Insurance For Train Travellers: Full Steam Ahead
Features of the Vande Bharat Express
With all the hype surrounding the indigenous Vande Bharat Express, India’s fastest train, we expect it to offer some awesome facilities, right? Well, don’t worry coz this train does offer a great passenger experience.
Out of the 16 fully air-conditioned coaches, there will be two Executive Class coaches and the remaining will be Chair Car coaches. The Executive Class comes with rotational seats which can be positioned in the direction of travel. It also comes with fully-sealed gangways that are fully inter-connected, automatic doors that come with retractable footsteps, disabled-friendly modular bathrooms with bio-vacuum system, Wi-Fi and infotainment onboard, passenger info system based on GPS, diffused LED lighting and roller blinds. Amazed, much?
What about the cost?
Tickets will easily be at least 40% to 50% higher than Shatabdi tickets. According to sources, Executive Class tickets are likely to be priced around Rs. 2,900, and the normal Chair Car tickets could be around Rs. 1,700. Pricey?
Additional Reading: 5 Financial Travel Tips You Should Keep In Mind
Save on train tickets and more
Will you believe us if we told you that you could get discounts and more on your train travels? Well, you can if you get yourself the right Credit Card. Check out these Credit Cards:
Apart from exclusive offers from IRCTC, you’ll also get a 1.8% transaction charge waiver on all train tickets booked via the IRCTC website. Additionally, get up to 10% value back as reward points on buying train tickets via the IRCTC website for AC1, AC2 and AC CC categories.
For all your spends, you’ll get a reward point for every Rs. 125 spent. You can, of course, use these reward points to book free train tickets (1 reward point = 1 rupee). How cool, right?
Enjoy railway-surcharge waiver for all transactions via the IRCTC website and Indian Railways booking counters. Apart from this, you can earn up to 4X reward points on special categories such as travel, dining and more.
The card offers 1.8% railway-surcharge waiver for transactions on IRCTC website and 2.5% waiver for transactions through Indian Railways booking counters. And its benefits aren’t restricted to just rail travel, you can also enjoy 10% off on all your dining and movie spends.
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