New Jalpaiguri Junction is an extremely significant railway station. It is a gateway to North Bengal, Sikkim and even Bhutan. Leaving out work, North Bengal is an easy access for people from Kolkata to spend few leisurely days or even a long holiday. There’s such variety in the region. People visit this region for safaris in forests and National Parks, a tranquil stay inside tea estates and for the beautiful Himalayan Mountains. Post Covid, getting a railway ticket confirmed from Kolkata to New Jalpaiguri has become extremely difficult. So road trip to North Bengal is a good option. Here we will see the pros and cons of travelling by Shyamoli Volvo AC Sleeper bus vs owner-driven car. I have had the experience of travelling by both.
Shyamoli Volvo Sleeper Bus vs Owner-driven Car: Comfort
When it comes to being able to stretch and travel 575kms (Kolkata to Siliguri) the sleeper bus wins in case of Shyamoli Volvo AC Sleeper bus vs owner-driven car. However, one has to be restricted with in her/his space/ bunk only and at the most can take a walk in the alley between the rows of seats. There will be numerous others who would want to do that. The benefit of owner-driven car is that you are with your chosen few for the journey. Because of the other points which we are going to discuss, I have enjoyed road trip to North Bengal comfortably by both means.
Shyamoli Volvo Sleeper Bus vs Owner-driven Car: Time
In case of Shyamoli Volvo AC Sleeper bus vs owner-driven car, car wins over when it comes to travel time. Shyamoli Volvo Sleeper took 14.5 hours to reach Kolkata to Siliguri while by car we reached in 11.5 hours. Cars are sleeker than the humungous buses and so travel faster and escapes traffic jams easily, if there are any. Road trip to North Bengal is time-consuming and definitely the travel time is a function of the number of breaks we take and I will discuss this now.
Shyamoli Volvo Sleeper Bus vs Owner-driven Car: Breaks & Refreshments
Road trip to North Bengal is long; so even though condition of roads is good, travellers need time to time breaks. Breaks for eating, for refreshment, for the loo and also for a little stretch and walk. Travelling by cars wins when it comes to taking breaks in Shyamoli Volvo AC Sleeper bus vs owner-driven car situation. Volvo provides two breaks, one short and one long, at specific spots while travelling from Kolkata to Siliguri and vice versa. They are Krishnanagar and Dalkhola. Since the spots are specific, the eateries and toilets are crowded and not in the best condition. In case of owner-driven car, one can take breaks according to the requirement, whenever and wherever one pleases. When I travelled by bus I carried food of my choice and had it inside the bus and had to wait for toilet breaks. The situation was different when we travelled by car. We carried food and stopped the car to have them at a favourable spot and also had lunch at a place we wanted to. We took appropriate refreshment breaks at proper neat and clean petrol pumps with hygienic toilets. This made us feel far more relaxed.
Shyamoli Volvo Sleeper Bus vs Owner-driven Car: Cost
Cost depends on numerous factors in the case of Shyamoli Volvo AC Sleeper bus vs owner-driven car in a road trip to North Bengal. When one is travelling alone for work or leisure, buying a bus ticket is safer and pocket friendly. When you are travelling with friends and family, a decently fuel efficient owner-driven car is cost effective. Bus tickets can be purchased online from makemytrip.com and redbus.com and can be physically bought from operator (in this case Shyamoli Yatri Paribahan) counters. However, the pricing of bus tickets are dynamic.
Shyamoli Volvo Sleeper Bus vs Owner-driven Car: Added Advantage
There are some added advantage of traveling by owner-driven car when it comes to Shyamoli Volvo AC Sleeper bus vs owner-driven car. Road trip to North Bengal doesn’t end in Siliguri but the journey by Shyamoli AC Sleeper Bus does. So there is a hassle of either booking vehicles for journey to be done further. Even booked vehicles often reach late or face issues when the bus arrives late. In this case the advantage of having your own vehicle is that there is no wasting time in transit and you can reach the final destination in the comfort of your own vehicle. This I feel is a great advantage of owner-driven cars. In fact, Siliguri onwards, driving through tea gardens, forests and climbing the slithering and misty hilly roads is both adventurous and romantic.
The Journey Matters
I must mention that Shyamoli Volvo Sleeper Bus is luxurious and as comfortable as possible for a road trip to North Bengal. The Volvo 6 cylinder diesel engine runs fast and smooth. The interior is excellent with personal ac vents, reading lights at every bunk. Blanket, pillow and water is provided. The large windows by the bunks are just great for a long trip. Travelling by owner-driven car wins in Shyamoli Volvo AC Sleeper bus vs owner-driven car contest, for me, mainly because it was a friends and family trip with everything personalised to our need of the moment. I have enjoyed both of them thoroughly and both the drives are unique experiences for me.
“Life is a journey that must be travelled, no matter how bad the roads and accommodations.” – Oliver Goldsmith.
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