redBus expands rZone- India’s first digital bus boarding facility
redBus, India’s largest online bus ticketing platform, announces the expansion of its, one of a kind digital bus boarding facility, called ‘rZone’, with 137 new locations in the city of Hyderabad, as part of the second phase of the pioneering project. The first phase, launched in December 2021, witnessed the installation of 32 rZones in the city. An rZone is a physical installation, identified visually as well as on the redBus app, to help the traveller identify their exact bus boarding point and board the bus without uncertainty or anxiety.
While state transport corporation buses usually commence intercity trips from a few large terminals, private buses pick up passengers from different locations across the city, giving rise to confusion with respect to the exact location of pick-up. This can cause extreme anxiety in people who have to amble around with heavy luggage, or along with children and the elderly. rZones help overcome this situation by creating a common meeting point for the traveller as well as the bus crew. The redBus app directs the traveller to the exact location of pick-up, while the bus crew is also aware of the passenger’s exact location of pick-up.
An rZone consists of a tall pole with a large cube-like structure at the top, displaying a unique code and redBus branding, to help travellers identify the boarding spot easily. The rZone code appears on the app as well as the bus ticket along with the other details for the convenience of the traveller. rZones offer free Wi-Fi in its vicinity for travellers to identify the exact location of their bus, as well as estimated time of arrival. By scanning the QR code displayed prominently at the rZone, travellers can instantly search & book bus tickets online. All rZones are readily recognized on Google maps through markers to help users navigate to their boarding points easily.
Since the commencement of phase-1, with 32 rZone terminals located at Ameerpet, SR Nagar, LB Nagar and Panjagutta, over 200,000 users have boarded buses from these points and over 92,000 travellers have availed the free Wifi facility so far, with about 500 people using it every day. Ameerpet witnessed the highest volume of bus boarding among all other pick-up points in the first phase, while Kukatpally is expected to be the busiest zone post phase-2.
rZones have been installed through an agreement with the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation, HY-FI (Hyderabad City Wifi Project - a Govt. of Telangana Initiative) and in association with AirFi, a T-Hub incubated tech company with a vision to transform bus infotainment system into a fully-fledged Wi-Fi enabled travel experience to all passengers. With rZones, redBus is also collaborating with the Telangana government’s Smart city project, the free Wifi at the boarding points, being a part of this initiative.
Speaking on the launch of the second phase of rZone installations in Hyderabad, Pallavi Chopra, Sr. VP, Brand- Head of Marketing, redBus, stated, “rZones serve as unique landmarks and convenient pick-up points for buses. As the locations of rZones are fixed, it allows bus operators to map their bus boarding points to these rZones, which then serve as unique identifiers for the bus travellers to locate their boarding points. The customer satisfaction of the rZone boarding points, conveyed through user reviews and ratings, is 2.5 times higher than that of non-rZone pick-up points. This has convinced us of the concept’s capability in transforming the travel experience of users and compelled us to invest in 137 more rZones for the second phase. This experience in Hyderabad will serve as the basis for implementing this in other cities in the country, in the future. We are grateful to the Government of Telangana & Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation for the successful scaling up of this initiative.”