Vande Bharat Express schedule and route: Indian Railways' fastest engine-less train - the Vande Bharat Express - also known as Train 18, has been flagged off by PM Narendra Modi today on the Delhi-Varanasi route. The Vande Bharat Express will cover the distance between Delhi and Varanasi in 8 hours, stopping at only two stations - Kanpur and Prayagraj. The IRCTC bookings for Vande Bharat Express have been opened and the engine-less Train 18 will start its commercial run on February 17. Vande Bharat Express schedule and route Vande Bharat Express or Train 18 will depart from Delhi at 6:00 AM to reach Varanasi at 2:00 PM. En route it will halt on the Kanpur station at 10:18 AM, stop for 2 minutes to depart at 10:20 AM and Prayagraj (formerly Allahabad) at 12:23 PM to leave at 12:25 PM. On the return journey, the Vande Bharat Express will leave from Varanasi at 3:00 PM to arrive in Delhi at 11:00 PM. On the way, it will stop at Prayagraj at 4:35 PM for 2 minutes and Kanpur at 6:30 PM for 2 minutes. Vande Bharat Express will run for five days a week - Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday. On Monday and Thursday the new self-propelled train will undergo maintenance. Train 18 launch LIVE: PM Modi flags off engine-less Vande Bharat Express; Indian Railways creates history! Train 18 has been named the Vande Bharat Express in recognition of the "vandaniya" work done by Indian Railways. The 'Make in India' Vande Bharat Express has been designed and developed in a record time of 18 months by ICF Chennai at a cost of Rs 97 crore. According to Indian Railways, with economies of scale the manufacturing cost will be half that of a comparable import. Given the world-class standards of the engine-less Vande Bharat Express and its cost advantage, the Train 18 set has already generated export interest from several countries. The 16-coach all air-conditioned Vande Bharat Express will have both Executive and non-Executive chair cars. The fares of Vande Bharat Express are 40-50% higher than the base fare of Shatabdi Express.