Indian Railways has made the process of seat reservation and booking of Indian railway tickets much simpler than ever before. Throughout the country, there are numerous counters where one can easily book the tickets. The metropolitan cities like Mumbai, Bangalore, Kolkata, Chennai and Delhi, have many counters at different centers for the convenience of users for booking rail tickets. Most of the manual reservation centers have been changed into computerized reservation centers, which provide ticket booking facilities from any station to any destination in quick time.
These reservation centers work between 08:00 hrs IST to 20:00 hrs IST, apart from Sundays. On Sundays, they operate till 14:00 hrs IST. Most of the routes are of the Indian Railways are much in demand and remain crowded most of the times. Due to this, people are recommended to get their bookings done in advance. Indian Railways has provided the facility of advanced reservation, which is made open 60 days before the actual date of journey. Sometimes, the public can face long queues and obtain wait listed ticket in such cases too. Makemytrip , ClearTrip & Rediff introducing online train ticket booking.
Advance Reservation is also made for people, who want to set out on sight-seeing trip or pilgrimage trips. The confirmed reservations guarantee that one is formally allowed to enter and travel by the train in the allotted seat numbers. In a single ticket, reservations are permitted for a maximum of 6 passengers with a condition that all of them are heading for the same destination. Some authorized travel agencies are allowable to issue tickets. From 2001, Senior citizens have got the authorization to get 30% reduction on their reserved tickets.
Advent of computerization system has also made it possible for passengers to book their ticket online. This system has also allowed checking whether the waitlisted ticket is confirmed or not. One can also check whether the fares have been changed or not and can look for the latest train timings. Apart from the ordinary reservation, 'Tatkal' is an emergency reservation scheme that is discussed in another article. IR also allows break journeys provided it is not in excess of eight journeys and completed within the validity period