Almost everyday, IRCTC (Indian Railway Catering And Tourism Corporation) Website for online railway reservation is either down or unresponsive, which causes lots of inconvenience to many people who want to book their train tickets under General or Tatkal Quota. If you are looking for sites which are best alternative to IRCTC, then try booking your tickets on following:
- Cleartrip [FAQ]: If you have an account with this site, then you can easily book and cancel your train tickets. The site also allows you to check PNR status and Seat Availability in real time.
- Make My Trip [FAQ]: Apart from booking and cancellation of e-tickets, the site also allows you to file TDR (Ticket Deposit Receipt).
- Rail Ticket Online: The website is developed and maintained by OSS Group of Companies. It is authorized as a genuine rail ticket service provider in India by IRCTC. Make sure to read their FAQ before transacting.
- Yatra [FAQ]: Provides you with same features like above.
How to book?
The booking procedure on above mentioned websites is almost similar. Let’s see how to book your tickets on Cleartrip.com?:
1. Go to cleartrip.com/trains and log in there using your Email Address and password. If you don’t have an account with them, then you can create one using this link.
2. On the bookings page, you are required to enter following details:
- From: Enter the name of city or station from where you will start your journey. If you know the station code of your departing station, then you can also enter it here. E.g. Station code for Bhopal is BPL, NDLS for New Delhi etc.
- To: Enter the name of destination city or station. You can also enter station code in this field.
- Class: Select the compartment from drop down menu in which you prefer to travel. You can select from AC First or Executive Class (1A), AC 2 tier (2A), AC 3 Tier (3A), AC Chair Car (CC), First Class (FC), Sleeper (SL) and Second Sitting (2S). Keep in mind, some classes are not available in every train. E.g. Chair car is available only in Shatabdi Express, but not in Rajdhani Express.
- Date: Select date of your journey.
- Number of Adults (12 to 60 years) and Children (5 to 11 years)
- Number of Senior men (60+ years) and Women (58+ years)
3. Once you have entered all the above details, click on Search Trains Button and the immediate next page will show a list of all trains running between your selected stations:
4. On this page, you can sort the list by Travel duration, Fare, Departure and Arrival time. Click on check availability button to check the total number of seats available in a particular train:
You will see any of the following statuses:
- Total Number of available seats
- Waiting List (WL) Number
- Reservation Against Cancellation (RAC) Number
5. Click on Book Button for booking a ticket in your preferred train. The next page will ask you following details:
- Traveler (Adult) details: First and last name, Age, Berth Preference, Meal Preference (available only in Shatabdi and Rajdhani).
- Infant details (if any)
- Contact Information
Details about your selected train will also be displayed on this page.
6. Once you have entered above information, click on Continue button and you will land on final payment page. On this page, select your preferred payment mode which can be Net Banking, Credit or Debit Card:
7. Click on Pay Now Button and if your transaction is approved by your bank, then your ticket will be booked and you will be able to download it onto your computer hard drive on the next page. You may also receive SMS confirmation about successful transaction.
- Above sites have partnered with IRCTC and you are required to complete One Time Password (OTP) verification in order to use their services.
- These websites may charge additional fees for booking tickets. This charge ranges from 20 INR to 50 INR, depending on the Class and type of Train, General or Tatkal Quota etc.
- The reservation system of these websites rely on the Official Railway Database. If the official database is experiencing errors or is inaccessible, then above websites CANNOT carry out your bookings or cancellations. You will have to wait until the official database come back online.
- If you have any query or are facing problems with the reservation system of above mentioned sites, then you should contact their customer care, not us!