— Edith Wharton
India has seen perceptible change when it comes to travel and the way we travel in the past one decade.
My dad loves traveling and he says , travel by road meant only three options when it came to cars-Ambassador, Fiat and Standard. Many of us haven’t heard or seen the last car brand my dad mentioned. It saw its demise simply because it would break down at the drop of a hat (that’s what my father used to say). ** I don’t know , okay?**
Ambassador is the grand old dame and we can spot a few in a month’s search, so is the case with something called the Fiat – Premier Padmini.
Now it is a pleasure to travel by road and we are spoilt for choice- Maruti Suzuki, Hyundai, Ford, Mahindra & Mahindra,Volvo, General Motors, Volkswagen,Audi,Porsche- you name the brand and it is available and the manufacturers are releasing so many models that it isn’t easy to keep track and the journey by bus has dramatically reduced the travel time -Volvo, Mercedes have changed the way we perceive travel by bus. Unlike in the past when we had to haggle with the taxi wallahs and get cheated by the notorious auto rickshaws and in tourist places their cheating methods were legendary.
Now, one has to have a smartphone and you are seamlessly connected from home to railway station or airport and back home with Ola, Meru or Uber and without any of the old hassles and journey has come full circle.
One can not complete the Yeh Mera India experience without mentioning IRCTC and the way it has revolutionized the way we book tickets and even food be it train or air plane. Many may not remember that in the earlier we had to carry a torch to find out the status of the RAC ticket in the list/s displayed in some dingy corner and fight with others to find where one stands in the rat race for seats/berth!!
Today we can speak with some pride because of Golden Quadrangle and the dramatically reduced travel time and those remote places to visit your temple or village have now turned in to all weather roads.
Oh! I forgot Captain Gopinath for revolutionizing the way aam admi travelled in India and how it became a dream come true to fly by an air plane in India- Deccan airways. Today one can travel to most places at a fraction of cost it used to be by an airplane and you have many a choice from Jet Airways to Spice to Indigo etc., Many a times the cost of an air ticket is more or less equal to AC class train travel and imagine the time and effort saved.
Unlike in the past it is easy to reach home because you do not spend a fortune to travel from airport to home and instead use a cab paying most economical fare both for air travel and taxi also.
All in all the journey in and around India has been made pleasurable and memorable.
So signing off by this lyrics from the movie Pardes,
Yeh mera India,
I love my India.
Vatan mera India,
Sajan mera India
Karam Mara India
Dharam mera India
And yeah, visit my India!