mini bus

Travelyaari users can now pay through Paytm and Reliance Jio wallets at select offline counters. The company did not mention which cities it has implemented this feature in, but claims it to have 2,000 bus operators across 10,000 branches in the country. This is a timely move given the demonetization drive.

The platform currently lists bus bookings from over 25 cities including Bangalore, Mumbai, Pune, Chennai, Cochin etc., with a similar number of destinations. It also lists hotels from 50 cities in the country. It’s not clear if the new feature will be applicable only for bus booking or for booking hotels offline as well. Founded in 2007, Travelyaari had raised $7 million in August this year, to improve its service network and to increase online bus bookings. The company had previously also provided technology solutions for state transport corporations like Punjab Roadways and PRTC.

Interestingly, earlier this week, Trak reported that Indian Railways is looking to launch a paperless, cashless initiative of its own, allowing passengers to book unreserved train tickets directly from Paytm, Airtel Money, Freecharge and other e-wallets.

The demonetization effect

The demonetization drive in India has presented businesses with an opportunity to sign up merchants and customers for digital payments. Yesterday, Paytm updated its app with 10 Indic languages and the list of merchants that support Paytm. The company, along with MobiKwik and FreeCharge, also cut wallet-to-account transfer charges. The NCPI has also waived off switching fees for all RuPay cards for ecommerce and PoS terminal transactions.

Our demonetization liveblog is here.

Image source: Flickr user Shankar S. under CC BY 2.0