Another Palace on Wheels getting on track this yearFebruary 21st, 2008 - 11:28 am ICT by admin
By Anil Sharma
Jaipur, Feb 21 (IANS) After the phenomenal success of the first Palace on Wheels, a craze among high spending tourists, another royal train ride is likely to start in Rajasthan by September this year. The new Palace on Wheels will run on the same route but will have more facilities than the existing train. The exclusive adds ons will be a dance floor, a massage centre and conference halls. The train will also have special suites, mini bars, a gym, music and steam bath facilities.
Officials of the Rajasthan Tourism Development Corp (RTDC) said work on building coaches for Palace on Wheels-2 had already started in Chennai. The coaches are expected to be in Jaipur by April after which the interiors of the train would be worked on.
The latest train will be a joint venture between the RTDC and Indian Railways.
“RTDC is trying that the new train comes on the tracks by September this year for which we are holding talks with railway authorities in Chennai,” an official said.
“The plan to launch another tourist train is being worked out keeping in mind the tremendous response received by the existing Palace on Wheels. We expect that with the launch of this train, tourism in Rajasthan will certainly get a boost,” the official said.
“Owing to near 100 percent occupancy of the existing train, several tourists have to be turned away due to non-availability of tickets. But with this train, we would be able to offer more seats to the tourists,” he added.
It will run on the same route as the existing one, covering Jaipur, Jodhpur, Jaisalmer, Chittorgarh, Udaipur, Sawai Madhopur, Bharatpur and Agra in a seven-night tour starting and ending in New Delhi.
Sources said the fare on the new train would be around 20-30 percent more than the existing Palace on Wheels. During the peak October-March season tourists shell out $535 a person per day. On twin and triple sharing basis the charges are $385 and $315 respectively.
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