The Indian Railways has decided to make luxury trains like Palace on Wheels, Golden Chariot and Maharaja Express more affordable by reducing the tariff by as much as 50 per cent. The tariff on such trains as of now is in thousands, making the experience unaffordable for common man.
According to a report in The Pioneer, the move seems a possibility with the Indian Railways slashing haulage charges that are borne by state tourism departments and stakeholders like IRCTC. The report further said that the Indian Railways is going for the move in view of a sharp decline in the interest of foreign travellers in such trains.
The revenue for two of the luxury trains – Palace of Wheels and Royal Rajasthan – which are operated by both Indian Railways and Rajasthan Tourism, have declined by more than 24 per cent and 63 per cent respectively, said the report.
The policy on these train was taken up for review by Railway Board on March 1 wherein the decision to cut haulage charges by 50 per cent was taken. A notification was also issued in this regard.
The move comes almost a month after the Railway Board agreed to the demand of Karnataka government to run Golden Chariot, the popular luxury train of south India, on a revenue-sharing basis. This was aimed at reducing the fare of the luxury train.