BANGALORE: Restrictions in school and college hostels and the total lack of freedom have caused many students to move into a more liberal and friendly atmosphere. Paying Guest (PG) accommodation in the city is now witnessing the inflow of a large number of outstation students who just cannot stand the squeaky bunk or the plastic mattress of a hostel.
Renting an apartment is yet another option, but it is not preferred as college life forces one to live on a tight budget. PGs all over Bangalore provide facilities at affordable rates and so, are preferred over hostels and apartments.
Food, which has been a major issue in PGs, is one of the main reasons that still deters many girls and boys alike who try to overcome this problem by dining out. Even though a large number of women’s PGs in Jayanagar, Koramangala and Bannerghatta provide three square meals a day, the quality,as many occupants say, deteriorates month after month. It is difficult to find a PG for men that provides affordable food, which makes it hard for college students to cope up with their expenses.
Jino Joy, a paying guest at S.R Nest, Koramangala, said, “Moving out from a hostel to a PG, it feels more like home now.” When asked about the quality of stay in her PG in Koramangala 7th block, Hera Shakil said, “With a 5BHK bungalow converted into a PG, and with a fridge, aqua guard, food twice a day, proper kitchen , big rooms and a maid 24/7, I wouldn’t complaint at all.”
Many of the women’s PGs, in Koramangala have water and electricity supply round the clock. With good security and reasonable curfew hours, getting back late from other activities in college or even late shifts from work, does not pose a problem. “It is a very good environment here. Although we have to arrange for our own internet connection and adjust with the food, I feel relaxed,” said Sumita Sengupta, a CIMA student and a paying guest at Crystal Rock, C L Layout.
Janice, who stays in Aishwarya PG, responded, “I have been here for one year and even though some people don’t like staying here, I think it is amazing. I will definitely stay here for at least another year”.
Chamrajpet, yet another PG hub, provides various facilities, be it high speed internet or good housekeeping. Even though many PGs in this locality are cramped up, students from various colleges in and around that area, like Bangalore Medical College and Osteen College, prefer staying in such accommodations.
Vijay, a Christ College student, who recently moved out of a PG in S.G Pallya, to an apartment, commented, “Food is horrible. There is electricity and security. Rules are rigid but everyone breaks them. There are curfews but no one cares. It is fun because everyone is like a family!”
In Banashankari and BTM layout, many men’s PGs are located, but with either no food or internet facilities and therefore, very few college and school students are interested in them. This has forced students in that area to pool in with friends and move into affordable apartments. They said they find it better to stay in an apartment and chip in equally for all the expenses, which has worked out better for them, than pay for the rent, food, internet and housekeeping separately. Life in Paying Guest sounds like fun.