UDAY Express a big boost for South India: The Utkrisht Double-Decker Air-conditioned Yatri Express, also known as the UDAY Express, is ready for its inaugural run this week between Coimbatore and Bengaluru! As the name suggests, UDAY Express is a fully air-conditioned double-decker chair car train.
UDAY Express a big boost for South India: The Utkrisht Double-Decker Air-conditioned Yatri Express, also known as the UDAY Express, is ready for its inaugural run this week between Coimbatore and Bengaluru! As the name suggests, UDAY Express is a fully air-conditioned double-decker chair car train. While some reports state that MoS Railways Rajen Gohain will flag off the UDAY Express between Coimbatore and Bengaluru on June 10, Financial Express Online learns that the ceremony may take place as early as June 8 at 10:00 AM in Coimbatore. Conceptualised keeping in mind the needs and comforts of business travellers, the UDAY Express train has been made by revamping existing double-decker coaches. The complete refurbishing of the train, including a completely new exterior look and the addition of mini-pantry, has been done at the Carriage Workshop, Perambur. UDAY Express, first announced in Railway Budget 2016, is aimed at catering to the “busiest routes” with an increased carrying capacity.
The train boasts of many firsts – sample this – it will have Indian Railways first automatic food vending machine. WiFi-based infotainment system, GPS-based passenger information system and diffused LED lighting are some of the features that passengers are likely to welcome. According to railway officials that Financial Express Online spoke to, the first UDAY Express train will have 8 double-decker coaches and two power cars. Three coaches out of these have been modified to make way for a mini-dining area-cum pantry. This dining area-cum-pantry will have the automatic food vending machine and powder-coated seats/stools with snack tables for passengers’ convenience. While the 5 coaches without the dining area can seat 120 passengers, the other three can seat up to 104 passengers. Each coach of UDAY Express will have LCD screens to display the upcoming destination and other passenger information. A railway official involved in the revamp of the double-decker coaches told FE Online that UDAY Express coaches can attain speeds of up to 160 kmph, if the track permits.
The exterior of UDAY Express is covered with anti-graffiti vinyl wrapping. Bright colours of orange and yellow have been chosen to give the train a cheerful look and feel. The coaches have a solar reflective coating on the roof. The interiors too boast of anti-graffiti vinyl wrapping, a step in line with Indian Railways vision to keep trains clean. The seat upholstery is similar to that in Shatabdi Express trains and roller blinds have been provided on windows. The seats have arm rests and the luggage racks have been spray-painted. Eventually Indian Railways plans to convert toilets on UDAY Express to bio-toilets. For now, modular fittings give the toilets a new look.
UDAY Express routes and fares
22666 Coimbatore-Bengaluru UDAY Express will depart from Coimbatore at 5:40 AM every morning (except Monday) and reach Bengaluru at 12:40 PM, taking 7 hours for the journey. En-route the UDAY Express will stop at Tiruppur, Erode, and Salem. On the other hand, 22665 Bengaluru-Coimbatore UDAY Express will leave Bengaluru at 2:15 PM every day of the week (except Monday) and arrive in Coimbatore at 9:00 PM, taking a total of 6 hours and 45 minutes. The double-decker train is expected to provide a big boost to business travellers between the two states of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. The fares of UDAY Express have not yet been notified, but FE Online learns that dynamic pricing will not be applicable for this new brand of train. Passengers will have to pay the usual AC chair car train fare.
According to the Indian Railways time-table of this year, two more UDAY Express trains will begin service as well. These will on the Bandra (T)-Jamnagar route and Visakhapatnam-Vijayawada route.