Railway ticket booking is now more convenient than before. Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation Limited (IRCTC) launched a chatbot “Ask DISHA” for improving customer services and easing the ticket booking process.
Furthermore, Indian Railways has now started displaying reserved charts online. Hence, it removes the hassle of passengers requesting TTE for the availability of vacant berths. Formerly, reservation charts are pasted on each coach of the train beside the doorways. Also, on the boards on railway platforms.
Passengers can now check the train reservation chart online by visiting the IRCTC website. Online reservation charts show a detailed view of the train layout, berth status, occupancy, and more. Indian Railways have taken this as part of the Green Initiative.
To travel long distances, through Indian Railways one has to book a ticket a few days in advance. The same has to be done well in advance on congested routes.
How many days in advance can I do railway ticket booking?
Railway ticket booking can be made generally up to 120 days in advance for all classes and all trains. The period of advance reservation (in short ARP) is exclusive of the day of departure of the train.
At intermediate stations where the train arrives on the following day, such railway ticket booking can be done more than 120 days in advance of the date of journey from the intermediate station. In the case of some Inter-city day trains, the ARP is less.
What if the journeys are decided one or two days in advance? How about a Railway ticket booking?
If the journeys are decided one or two days in advance, then tatkal is the way of booking. Tatkal ticket booking opens at 10 AM for AC Classes and 11 AM for NON-AC Classes. Given that excluding the date of journey from the train originating station.
What if you aren’t able to do railway ticket booking in tatkal?
If you aren’t able to book a ticket in tatkal, then you have to look for alternatives. However, there is no need to be discouraged for not getting a train ticket.
Earlier, railway ticket booking was allowed only up to half an hour before the journey. Now, you can book a ticket up to 5 minutes before the departure of the train. Not to mention, if the tickets are available only.
Although the railways have been providing this facility for a long time, many people are not using or aware of it. So, let’s learn about this type of railway ticket booking.
Indian Railways will prepare two charts to book the train. The first chart is prepared 4 hours before the departure of the train. The second chart is made exactly half an hour before the journey. If someone cancels a ticket at the last minute on the train you want to travel, you can get those tickets. For that vacant berth info, you need to visit the online chart on the IRCTC website. Accordingly, you can make reservations to the vacant seats if available, either online or at railway reservation counters.
How Can I Check the Online Chart on the IRCTC website?
- First, go to the https://www.irctc.co.in/online-charts/ website.
- Next, give the journey details like train number, journey date, and boarding station details.
- Then click the Get Train Chart option.
- Now you can see the reservation chart. Click on the relevant coach/class to check for the train seat chart.
- By clicking on the berth number, you would get to know the details of berth occupancy (Occupied for the full journey, Occupied for the part journey, or Vacant for the full journey).
The berths are highlighted in various colors indicating their status. For instance, available berths are highlighted in green. Whereas, the part journey occupied berths are highlighted in yellow color.
The final chart preparation time varies for morning, evening, and midnight trains.
For trains that are listed to start out from 12 am in midnight to 11 am in the morning, charting is usually done on the previous day at 8.00 PM.
On the contrary, charting is done 3-4hours prior to the scheduled departure for evening trains.
For midnight trains, chart preparation is usually done before the closing time of the previous day, i.e., 8.00 PM.
Under the current reservation facility, the passengers can now do the railway ticket booking on the day of travel. Or just a few hours before the train departure. So, for those who want to travel by train, it is advisable to look for tickets even before the departure of the train. Alternatives can be looked at if they are still not available.
In brief, after the final chart preparation if there are any vacant seats available, then you can do the railway ticket booking under current availability.