IRCTC modifies rules for online ticket reservations

More than 13 lakh online tickets are booked through the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) portal – – the e-ticketing outlet of the national carrier. About 2 crore people travel by Indian Railways every day. The national carrier is always upgrading the system so as to ease the booking processes and provide better services.

A traveller is allowed to book tickets in advance up to 120 days through the IRCTC portal. “The date of journey (for the originating station of the train) will not be counted in 120-day limitation,” said Minister of State of Railways Rajen Gohain.

The new, modified rules:

  • Six tickets can be booked in a month from a single user ID. If the user is Aadhaar verified, he/she can book 12 tickets in a month. One person can book only two tickets during the opening hours between 8 am and 10 am.
  • Single page or quick book services are not available between 8 am and 12 noon. One user can have only one log-in session at a time. Captcha is available at login, passenger detail and payment web pages.
  • An additional level of security has been included in the modified rules. Now, a user is required to answer a security question after he/she has filled up his/her personal information – user name, email, mobile number, check box etc.
  • Agents are allowed to book tickets between 8 am and 8.30 am, 10 am and 10.30 am and, 11 am and 11.30 am. Authorised travel agents cannot book tatkal tickets during the first 30 minutes after online reservation opens.
  • Online ticket booking has been made time sensitive. The standard time to fill up passenger details is 25 seconds. The minimum input time for Captcha on passenger details page and payment page is 5 seconds.
  • Ten seconds are given for making the payment. One-time password (OTP) system has been made mandatory for payments through Net banking for all banks and users.
  • Tatkal tickets can be booked a day before the travel. Online berth reservation starts at 10 am for air-conditioned (AC) coaches and at 11 am for sleeper bogies.
  • Complete refund of train fare and tatkal charges can be claimed only if the train fails to depart in three hours of its scheduled departure time.
  • A passenger can claim a full refund if the train’s route has been diverted and he/she doesn’t want to travel on that route.
  • A passenger can also claim a full refund if he/she has been shifted to a lower class than what the ticket was booked for provided he/she doesn’t want to travel in the changed class. But, if a passenger is willing to travel in the lower class, he/she will be paid back the difference.