Following the vision of ‘Digital India’ of Hon’ble Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi, Indian Railways has revamped & upgraded its e-ticketing website www.irctc.co.in and IRCTC Rail Connect Mobile App, which are used for booking of Railway tickets ‘online’.
The Upgraded e-ticketing Website & App, offering “Best-in-class” features, has been launched by Hon’ble Minister of Railways and Commerce & Industry and Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution, Shri. Piyush Goyal today on 31st December, 2020. This will be a New Year gift by the Railways to all passengers.
Speaking on the occasion, he said “The Railways is committed to serving the nation, and constantly working to augment its services to further improve the rail travel experience. This Upgraded e-ticketing platform for booking of online Railway tickets, will enhance passenger convenience. “ He said that IRCTC should continue to work towards constantly improve the web site and ensure that is second to none in the world as per the digital India mission and vision of PM.
e-Ticketing services for booking of Indian Railway Tickets:
In 2014, the Next Generation E-ticketing (NGeT) system was launched to provide seamless e-ticketing services – higher booking loads and better user interface, through IRCTC. The upgraded e-ticketing website & App will provide the next level of services and experience to the rail users.
Customer experience has been the focus for revamping the features:
The railway customer has been focus of the design of this new world class website for booking of rail tickets. Novel user personalization features linked to user log in, have been incorporated for the first time ever, along with customizations for seamless travel experience, one stop train selection for booking, and integrated booking for meals & accommodation with tickets.
Salient Features of the Upgraded website:
- Complete User personalization linked to the user login, such as
- The booking of meals, retiring rooms and hotels has been integrated and can be directly along with the tickets, thus providing a one stop solution for the needs of the traveller.
- Predictive entry suggestions using Artificial Intelligence to be given to the passenger when he is entering the station or passenger. This will greatly reduce the hassle in searching stations and also save time in ticket booking.
- Simpler checking of the refund status at the user accounts page. Earlier this feature was not easily accessible.
- ‘Regular’ or ‘Favorite’ journeys can be booked easily by automatically entering relevant details.
- Train search & selection simplified by putting the information on one page to reduce the time used by passengers and enhancing the booking experience.
- All information on one page – Availability for all class are displayed along with respective fares for all trains. Simply scroll the page and choose to ‘Book’ the desired train and class. Earlier each train seat availability and fares could be seen only after clicking on that train individually.
- A ‘Cache system’ has been introduced in the backend to provide availability status. This will avoid delays in loading availabilities.
- In case waitlisted tickets, its ‘confirmation probability’ is displayed. Earlier this had to be checked for each waitlist status separately.
- Availability for other dates can be toggled on the page itself.
- Prompts during the booking process for making it easy for even less computer familiar users. This will save his time in wandering on the website for searching the website.
- The journey details will be shown also at the payment page. It will prompt the user to check and rectify, if there are any typographical errors. These corrections can only be corrected by visiting a PRS centre.
- The website has in-built features for enhancing cyber security by using appropriate captchas.
Best in Class features:
The Upgraded and enhanced e-ticketing website & Mobile App aims to provide best in class user experience amongst various other online travel and ticketing websites.
The level of these features will be even more advanced than the ones offered currently by the other ticketing websites. In most websites, the station search entry is still alphabetical, availability status is either not there or old in time. Moreover, the convenience of integrated booking for stay & meal in this upgraded e-ticketing website is unmatched.
At present, this e-ticketing website of IRCTC has more than 6 Crore active users, using it to book more than 8 Lakhs tickets daily. Around 83% of the total reserved railway tickets are booked through this online system.
IRCTC & CRIS have been working to introduce ‘Smart Booking’ feature to book connecting trains on alternate routes between the pair of stations which do not have direct trains.
Railways is committed to bring out continued improvements in its e-ticketing services.
While launching the upgraded website and new app, Minister lauded the contribution of Rail Parivar in ensuring a Victories fight back against the challenges posed by Corona and making railways Future Ready. Efforts by IRCTC in the same direction.