Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) - the online ticketing arm of the Indian Railways - provides a special facility to enable users to book train tickets a day ahead of the journey. Under the Indian Railways' Tatkal programme, aimed at providing train reservations on a short notice, tickets can be booked by registered IRCTC users by paying a premium over the normal fare a day ahead of the journey. The IRCTC Tatkal train ticket booking service opens at 10:00 am every day for making air-conditioned (AC) class bookings, and 11:00 am for non-AC class reservations, according to IRCTC's bookings portal (irctc.co.in). (Also Read: Tatkal ticket rules and other important details)
Here's all you need to know about train reservations under the Indian Railways' Tatkal programme (through IRCTC):
The user is required to log in to the IRCTC booking portal in order to book Tatkal tickets. Therefore, if not registered with the IRCTC portal already, the user is required to complete the registration process and log in using his or her account details.
After login, the user is directed to the "Book Your Ticket" page. Here, the user can search for available trains by filling in details such as source and destination stations, date of journey and class of travel.
The next page displays the list of trains available for the selected route. The user can access information about the timings and route of a train by clicking on its name.
In the next step, the user is required to indicate the booking class for the selected train.
The "quota" option is available at right side of the above train list. For booking a Tatkal ticket, the user needs to select "Tatkal" under the quota section.
To book a Tatkal ticket in the selected train, the user is required to click on the "Book Now" option.
On the passenger reservation page, the user is required to confirm details such as the train name, station names, class and journey date displayed on the left side of the page to proceed.
After this step, the user is asked to enter details such as the names, age, berth preference and food choice for each passenger.
After entering the details, the user may proceed by clicking on the "continue booking" option. At this stage, any of the filled details can be changed by selecting the "re-plan booking" option.
The ticket details, total fare (including taxes) and availability of berths at the particular time are displayed on the screen. After tallying the details, the user can proceed to make the payment against the booking by clicking on the "continue booking" option.
After successful payment and booking of accommodations, the ticket confirmation page is displayed. A virtual reservation message (VRM) in the form of SMS is sent by the Railways system to the mobile number provided in the passenger reservation form.
Also, a booking confirmation mail is sent to the email address of the registered IRCTC user.
Tatkal ticket booking timings
Indian Railways' Tatkal facility provides an Advance Reservation Period of one day, excluding the day of journey. For example, if the train is to depart on the second day of the month, the Tatkal quota booking for that particular train will open at 10:00 am for AC class bookings (1A/2A/3A/CC/EC/3E) and 11:00 am for non-AC class bookings (SL/FC/2S) on the first day of the month, according to the IRCTC website.
(Also read: All you need to know about Tatkal ticket charges)
Tatkal ticket booking charges
The Indian Railways has fixed Tatkal charges as a percentage of fare - at the rate of 10 per cent of basic fare for second class, and 30 per cent for all other classes subject to the following limits as mentioned by its online ticketing arm:
|Class of travel||Minimum Tatkal charges (in Rs.)||Maximum Tatkal charges (in Rs.)|
|AC Chair Car||100||200|
|AC 3 Tier||250||350|
|AC 2 Tier||300||400|
A Tatkal reservation can be made for a maximum of four passengers per PNR (passenger name record).
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