A train ticket is a ticket issued by the railway that enables the bearer to travel on a specific rail network. In India, you can buy tickets from Indian Railways ticket counters at various stations, or from authorized ticketing agents of the IRCTC. You can also buy tickets online from the IRCTC website or its authorized e-ticketing partners.
In addition to being your pass for the travel, a train ticket contains information about the journey, passengers, and the train. IRCTC generates every train ticket with a PNR number which is a 10-digit unique number.
Read on to learn more about train tickets to stay informed and always travel with confidence on trains.
Indian Railways Train Tickets Types
Indian Railways issues two types of train tickets. The reserved ticket and the unreserved ticket. Apart from these categories, there are various quotas for Indian Railways tickets such as tickets under the tatkal quota, Premium Tatkal ticket etc. Depending upon the reservation status, a train ticket can be said confirmed ticket if the passenger has been allotted a seat. A confirmed ticket is denoted by CNF whereas, in case of non-allotment of the seat, a train ticket can be said unconfirmed ticket. Further, an unconfirmed train ticket is a waitlisted ticket which is denoted by WL on the ticket.
Additionally, there is yet another type of ticket known as the Platform ticket. Indian Railways issues platform tickets for the convenience of people who want to visit or stay at the platform for few hours to receive someone, to see off a relative or friend, or for any other reasons.
Components of a Train Ticket
PNR – The Passenger Name Record
When you book a train ticket, IRCTC computerized reservation system issues a PNR number to it. Ticket contains personal details of the passenger and other information about the journey and the train. If it is a printed ticket, you will find PNR number on the top left side of the ticket. The unique 10-digit PNR number is one of the most important features of an Indian Railways ticket.
PNR number can be used to avail many more services of Indian Railways such as for booking retiring rooms at stations, sitting in the waiting room, and for lodging complaints with the Railway for low-quality food, theft, or seeking help in an emergency.
Your train ticket also contains the train number and train name. In a printed ticket, you can find the train number at the top of the ticket just right to the PNR number. The train number is generally printed in the middle portion of the ticket just below the information like the coach, seat/berth and gender of the passenger. You can use your train number to easily find information about that train such as arrival time, departure time, en-route journey, available class etc.
Date of Journey
Your train ticket contains the date of journey information printed on it. Indian Railways allow passengers to book train tickets 120 days in advance. Having the date of the journey printed on the ticket can help you remind the journey date so you don’t miss the train. You can find the journey date printed on the top of the ticket just right to the train number.
Indian Railway has different fares for different class seats. You can find the fare of the train journey printed on the ticket as shown in the above image. The fare is printed in numerals and words on the ticket. Indian Railway provides travel concessions to senior citizens, women, patients, and handicapped passengers. Fare is printed on the ticket for the convenience of the passengers so, they don’t get overcharged by the booking clerk or e-ticket providers.
Related Reading: Things to know Before Booking Tickets in Premium Special Trains
If you have a waitlisted ticket or ticket on the waiting list, this information is for you. Due to bookings in advance and seat unavailability, IRCTC often issue tickets in waiting. A waitlisted ticket is marked by WL followed by a number as shown in the above image. There are many types of waitlisted ticket such as General Waiting List ticket GNWL, Remote Location Waiting List RLWL, and a Pooled Quota Waiting List PQWL ticket.
A confirmed train ticket means your ticket is confirmed and you have been allotted the seat/berth. A confirmed ticket will have the coach number, seat/berth number, and the type of berth mentioned on it. If your ticket is marked with CNF, it means the ticket has been confirmed and the seat will be allotted after chart preparation. Usually, the chart is prepared 4 hours before the scheduled departure of the train.
RAC Status Ticket
Is your ticket marked with RAC? If yes, it means the berth is split into two RAC seats. Side Lower berth is allotted to RAC ticket holders. Two passengers get sitting accommodation on the side lower berth. Having the RAC ticket ensures travel certainty but it does not guarantee a berth on the train.
Class of Accommodation
Indian Railway offers a different class of travel tickets. These are AC 1st class, 1A; AC 2 tier, 2A; AC 3 tier, 3A; First Class, AC chair car, CC, Sleeper Class, SL, and 2nd seating. You can find the class of accommodation on the tickets as shown in the above image. Among these, AC first-class ticket is the most expensive one, followed by AC 2, AC 3, CC, and Sleeper class tickets.
Reservation From and To
While booking a train ticket, we are required to fill reservation and boarding stations. For example: If you have a confirmed reservation ticket from Bangalore City Junction to Pune Junction. It will contain reservation from and to information on the ticket as shown in the above image.
Online Train Ticket
Many passengers book tickets from Indian Railways PRS counters. Though you may book a train ticket online from the IRCTC website. Online tickets can also be booked from the authorized e-ticketing partners of the Indian Railways. An online ticket contains all the information such as PNR number, Class of Accommodation, Reservation status etc., similar to that of a printed ticket. It contains some additional information such as the transaction Id of your payment done for the ticket, service charge, and a QR code for security as shown in the above image.
Furthermore, your train ticket also indicates Superfast charges, Coach No., Berth/Seat No., Gender of the Passenger, Age of the Passenger, date and time of the ticket bought etc. If you will notice, it contains advertisements, appeals, and sometimes the slogan of a government’s scheme or mission at the bottom or right side of the printed ticket.
Can I Transfer a Train Ticket?
Yes, you can transfer your confirmed train ticket to your family members viz mother, father, sister, brother, son, daughter, husband and wife. Make sure to submit your ticket transfer request at least 24 hours in advance before the scheduled departure of the train. However, ticket transfer is not applicable on tickets availed on concession.
Apart from that, tickets can also be transferred to another government servant travelling on duty. Tickets can also be transferred among students of recognized educational institutions. Given they make a ticket transfer request via their Principal/Head at least 24 hours before the scheduled departure of the train. Additionally, tickets can also be transferred to the other members of the marriage party, and NCC cadets.
Can I Upgrade My Ticket to a Higher Class?
Your reserved ticket of a lower class can be upgraded to a higher class in the same train and on the same date. Train ticket upgradation is subject to availability of accommodation. Also, the travelling ticket examiner may upgrade your ticket during the journey.
What Is a Circular Journey Train Ticket?
Indian Railways offers circular journey tickets to passengers who wish to go on a sightseeing or pilgrimage trip. These tickets are issued on all routes except regular routes which begin and end at the same station. You can book sleeper and second-class seats through a circular train ticket. These tickets offer you the benefit of telescopic rate which is very low compared to the regular point-to-point fare.
How to Book a Ticket From IRCTC Website?
Follow the steps below to book a train ticket from IRCTC:
- To book a train ticket, visit the official website of IRCTC or install IRCTC Rail Connect App from Google Play Store.
- Log in with your username and password. If you don’t have a valid user login, make sure to register first.
- Under the book ticket option, enter the station’s detail, date of journey, class of accommodation, quota, and then hit the search button.
- All the trains on the given route with seat availability information will be displayed.
- Select the train for which you want to purchase the ticket and follow the next steps.
- After entering passenger details and successful online payment, you will receive a confirmation SMS and email.
- Your train ticket will be generated with a unique 10-digit PNR number and other details of your journey.
Booking a train ticket online is easy and it takes only a few minutes. If you are unable to book a ticket online from IRCTC or any other e-ticketing platform, you may wish to buy tickets from Indian Railway Reservation counters located at stations and various other locations near you.
Travelling by train is comfortable, flexible, and hassle-free. RailMitra is your best travel buddy during a train journey. It allows you to make fare enquiry, order famous foods at stations, and get them delivered to your seat. Furthermore, you can use its various enquiry features to know the live running status of the train, check the PNR status of your ticket, get information about the stations, important trains between stations, and train schedule.
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