Chennai-Bengaluru-Udupi travel by road on June 10-Latest updates - eNidhi India Travel Blog

Chennai-Bengaluru-Udupi travel by road on June 10-Latest updates

I traveled to Udupi from Chennai on bike-started yesterday (June 10th)- This post will detail what I experienced on the ground and provide you some clarity if you are planing to travel between Karnataka and Tamil Nadu.
Pre-travel
-I applied on Seva Sindhu portal and got approved. Slots may not be available for immediate travel, you may have to register few days before intended travel date. Site works well early morning hours, than peak hours. You will have to select check post through which you will enter Karnataka. I selected Mulabagil near Kolar instead of Attibele, as that route was shorter.
-I couldn't get TN epass- because the site didn't have any provision for Two wheelers. So I took a chance and set out without TN Pass, or AP pass (have to cross AP to reach Kolar border). But was armed with KA pass.

Travel:
Left home at 5 AM, as it was supposed to be curfew before that.
Didn't face any check post or blockade anywhere. I saw several people on two wheeler traveling with big bags.

Every 3rd car I saw on the road was a taxi. I guess Taxi people are making good money- those who would have taken a bus or train are now forced to spend thousands on taxi. Facebook groups are full of Taxi people commenting on people's post offering to help with the pass and provide taxi service to wherever you would like to go. Taxi fares are about 10-14 Rs per km (onward + return, garage to garage) + toll, driver batta etc extra. That is about 8000 to 12000 Rs for BLR-Chennai (400 km*2) + another 2000 in toll+ Driver batta, easily 10000-15000 Rs instead of a 300 Rs train ticket or 600 Rs bus ticket (pre-lockdown). No wonder many are preferring to travel on two wheeler instead.

Somewhere near Kanchipuram there was a checkpost, but staff were waving through most of the traffic. Only a few cars were randomly stopped and they were also let go after a quick conversation. I didn't see those car drivers show any papers. My guess is checkpost staff are also tired after months of work and have stopped bothering much particularly if you are leaving TN or traveling within TN

At AP-TN border, vehicles leaving TN were not subjected to any check by TN police, but vehicles entering TN were being sprayed with disinfectant and documents checked. So if you are entering TN, be sure to have TN pass.

Few kms ahead, AP border checkpost was tight- except for VIPs
We were pulled over, I showed KA pass- staff entered details in their register and let us through. Almost all private vehicles were being checked, except goods vehicles.

While we were there, a convoy of an Innova and a Mercedes Benz zipped through the check post- no one stopped them. Staff said something like "They would have taken permission directly from DC, no point asking". So, rules are different for rich people- if you can't get a pass, get a luxury car and some party flag maybe.

Next stop was Karnataka border near Mulabagilu- again only random check- few vehicles were checked while others let through. I was expecting temperature scan, document check, quarantine seal etc here but nothing happened. Later read news that Karnataka has decided to reduce testing. May be they don't want to test more people, or overworked border staff are too tired to check everyone.

Rest of the journey was smooth. No check posts anymore at any district borders. Could travel till my native place without any issues- rode through 8 districts of Karnataka (Kolar- BLR Rural-BLR Urban-Tumkur-Hasan-Chikmagalur-Shivamogga-Udupi). Wasn't stopped anywhere.

Traffic on the road was light. You can go at higher speed if you wish. I was riding slower than normal due to extra luggage (saddle bags & backpacks).

Bus Services
  • Didn't see any buses in TN (though I read buses have started from 10th, so now they may be available). Saw some local buses in Walajapet (AP border town)
  • In AP I saw only local buses- like from Chittoor no buses to Bengaluru but buses are available till towns in Karnataka border.
  • In Karnataka buses are operating with limited capacity. May have to wait a bit but possible to get a bus to wherever you would like to go
  • In Agumbe I saw only 1 private bus during 45 minutes- compared to one every 2-3 minutes earlier. In DK, Shivamogga etc buses are being allowed to operate but not allowed to raise ticket prices. Earlier a 60 seater bus would stuff 60 sitting and another 40 standing passengers- now they need to recover same money from max 30 passengers. Even those passengers are not guaranteed as people aren't traveling much. So bus owners need to decide if it is viable to operate a bus.
Highway condition
In TN and AP few shops are open by the highway. Getting some food, mechanic/puncture shop etc not a problem. Roadside shops like tender coconut sellers, tea shops are operational.

Karnataka has allowed hotels and restaurants to open from 8th. So highway hotels were open on 10th. Getting food was not a problem. Even lodges are open, you can stay overnight if you wish to.
Bottom line
  • Some checks are still happening- be sure to get destination state pass. No need to worry much about origin or transit states. 
  • If you are traveling in luxury car you are very less likely to be stopped.
  • No worries for within state travel-near zero checks at district borders.
  • Minimum support system is available- food, stay, public toilets etc are accessible
  • Travel only if it is absolutely necessary.
Disclaimer: As observed on 10th June 2020. Since rules change dynamically, cross check latest updates for your scenario (where to where, what type of vehicle, reason for travel etc) before travel. 

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