Delhi to London Epic Bus tour in May 2021: Price, Details - eNidhi India Travel Blog

Delhi to London Epic Bus tour in May 2021: Price, Details

 Recently I came across the ad for Delhi to London Bus trip. Out of sheer curiosity I visited the website, downloaded their PDF and checked out the details. I felt like sharing my findings with you, hence this post.

It is an exciting proposition to travel 18 countries/20000 kms over 70 days by road. There are many Indians who have done this road trip in their own vehicles but if you don't want to dive deep into tons of paperwork, extensive research and planning, booking a seat in a well organized bus tour might be your next best option. This particular Delhi to London by bus tour is organized by Adventures Overland, people who have good experience in organizing similar trips.

Let us see some highlights of this Delhi to London by bus road trips

  • Planned Schedule: May 2021 till July 2021 (70 days for Delhi to London) & separate trip for return journey.
  • Route: India-Myanmar-Thailand-Laos-China-Kyrgystan-Uzbekistan-Kazakhstan-Russia-Latvia-Lithuania-Poland-Czech Republic-Germany-Netherlands-Belgium-France-UK (18 Countries)
  • Visa required: 10. Myanmar, Thailand, Laos, China, Kyrgystan, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Russia, Schengen (Covers Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Czech, Germany, France, Belgium & Netherlands) and finally UK
  • There're few days of site-seeing in cities along the way, not just direct travel
Map taken from delhitolondon.in

If only we had road access to central Asia via Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iran we could have reached Europe UK with 15-20 days less journey. At least a road access to China via Ladakh or Manipur would also help in such overland road trips. But don't think such things would happen anytime soon. India to Oman by ship and overland from there could have been another option but again that passes through war zones, so may not help much.

This bus tour is reportedly inspired from the ancient Culcutta-London-Culcutta bus service during British Era. (now Kolkata)

While the trip plan looks very elaborate and ambitious, there're some concerns we need to factor. If the trip has to start in May 2021, you should start visa processing by Feb 2021 itself. This is a bold move because we don't know what will be the situation w.r.t corona virus. Unless Corona virus scare subsides by end of 2020, travel during first half of 2021 will not be easy. Do you think next six months are good enough to eradicate corona problem or control it to the extent normal life can resume at pre-covid levels?

Below is the normal visa timelines
  • Myanmar: eVisa/Visa on Arrival
  • Thailand: Visa on Arrival (may not work for land border crossing)
  • Laos: Visa on arrival for Indians
  • China: 7-10 days, passport need to be submitted
  • Kyrgystan: eVisa
  • Uzbekistan: eVisa
  • Kazakhstan: eVisa
  • Russia: Need visa, processing time could be up to 30 days
  • Schengen: About 10-15 days, passport need to be submitted
  • UK Visa: About 3 weeks, passport need to be submitted.
Most visas can be initiated max 3 months prior to date of arrival. India now set to beat USA and Brazil in total number of covid cases, world will be vary of Indians for some time. Let us just hope all goes well and you get your visa in time.

How much would the bus tour from Delhi to London cost?
Organizers are selling the tour in parts and as a whole. You can book in parts or entire tour.
Part 1: India-Myanmar-Thailand: 12 days
Part 2: China: 16 days
Part 3: Central Asia/Russia: 22 days
Part 4: Europe & UK: 16 days

Each of these legs cost as much as a small hatchback car (3.5 to 5 lakhs) to book independently and entire tour costs  as much as a big SUV/Luxury sedan (15 lakhs).  + 5% GST Extra.

If you can't afford whole 70 days for the Delhi-London trip, you can join for any of the four parts above, or for similar part during return journey (London-Delhi). If you are pressed for time or money, I would say try China, Central Asia and Russia part as both Europe and South East Asia can be explored separately without much complexity.

What does the Delhi London bus tour price include?
  • Hotel stay at night (No need to sleep on the bus)
  • Select site seeing in various cities along the way
  • Visa processing fee (standard tourist visa) & assistance
  • Most meals
  • Service of a guide
  • Bus journey including permit, fuel, snacks etc
What the Delhi London bus tour price doesn't include:
  • 5% GST
  • Insurance
  • Any expense due to change in schedule/disruptions
  • Medical or other emergency, medicines
  • Meals not specified in the itinerary
  • Cost of travel & stay before and after the tour
  • Extra fee for express visa processing (For example if you can pay 1 lakh rupees UK will process your Visa in 1 day instead of normal 15 days)
Factor about 2-2.5 lakhs for all the above excluded items (GST 75k, return flight from UK to India 40k, insurance 10k, cost of reaching starting point from home, other misc expenses)

Things to keep in mind during Delhi to London Bus tour
- Potential impact of Covid19 related issues- what happens if some countries deny entry/force testing/quarantine? Challenges could arise for yourself or someone else in the bus or for entire bus. Who has to own the cost of disruption/delay? Fine print seem to suggest customers own the risk of disruptions. If your trip is delayed by 10-14 days, it could affect some visa validity, all hotel bookings, your return flight booking, your leave plans and many other things. Do factor this risk.
- Is the schedule suitable for you? What happens if you'd like to spend 2-3 days extra in a country? Is that incremental cost worth it?
- Refund rules if trip has to be cut short or cancelled by operator or if your visa is rejected
- Would it be worth planning it on your own- like speak to those who drove in their own cars- if you have a group of 4 people, instead of spending 60-70 lakhs for 4 seats, would it be worth buying an SUV for 20 lakhs and spend rest of the money to plan a road trip on your own?
- Roughly 3 months of time- 70 days for trip + time to reach starting point, return home and buffer for any delays along the way. (Just hope no quarantine anywhere)

How is the Delhi-London tour bus?
Bus looks luxurious, with 2+1 business class seats and entertainment options. There is no mention of an onboard toilet though. Looks like it can accommodate about 30 pax. Website says tour group of max 20 is accepted. So additional space could be for crew, luggage and facilities like pantry.

Images taken from operator's website https://bustolondon.in/ Please visit the site for more details and queries.

All information as seen on official website and brochure. Tour details are subject to change at the discretion of operator.

Are you excited? Would you consider such a bus journey next year?

8 comments:

  1. Would love to do this route but on my own some day.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Sounds interesting.. but covid unsurity and travel in bus for so many days nonstop is a challenge

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes. But it is not non stop journey. Overnight stay will be at hotels.

      Delete
  3. Replies
    1. You can use contact me form in this blog, or send me a msg on any social media platforms. (@enidhi)

      Delete
  4. I want go how I contact

    ReplyDelete

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