Planning on travelling with the Indian Railways? Want to find out which trains you can take and whether or not there are seats available on them on the date of your travel?
Well, checking the train availability is pretty simple when it comes to the Indian Railways, thanks to their online web portal the IRCTC. This is the website that one has to refer to when it comes to checking out trains, the number of stops it will make on the way, the number of seats available, and also the booking process is done from here. So, if you want to know whether a train is available on your date of travel or not, here are the steps to follow:
- The first thing that you will have to do is create an IRCTC account. When creating the account, make sure that you give the email id that you use on a daily basis and also the phone number, which you use, because regular updates will be sent to your phone and your email. Without an IRCTC account, you will not be able to book tickets, and hence, it is imperative that you first make an account.
- The next step would be to enter the date of your travel, the station that you will be travelling from and your preferred destination. If the place that you wish to travel to does not have a railway station, look for nearby ones, like for example if you wish to travel to Shimla, you will have to book a train till Kalka station, and from there, you can either take a toy train or a car to Shimla.
- Once you enter the necessary details, a list will be generated by the portal showcasing all the trains that travel from your choice of places. Check carefully for the departure time and the arrival time. Also, keep in mind that not every passenger train runs on a daily basis, unlike local trains (whose availability and timing can be found online with ease), and hence, you will also have to check whether or not the train runs on the day (i.e. Sunday, Monday, etc.) of your travel.
- Once you find the train of your choice, the next step would be to look for the availability of seats. There is booking window that opens 120 days before the date of travel and on what day you are booking your ticket will determine the availability of seats. The later you book, higher the chances that you will not get confirmed reservation at the go.
- If you do not get a reservation, you can book the tickets in your preferred class of travel, and then, await your turn in the waiting list. If you have RAC or reservation against cancellation, then you can always travel, but you will have to share your seat. In case of waiting, until and unless your name moves up to RAC, you are legally not allowed travelling.
Checking the availability is pretty easy once you log into the IRCTC website. Do it at the earliest if you wish to book a ticket.