The Indian Railways have been described as the best way to travel through India, as it is only a train journey that can truly help you connect with the country and its people.
The Indian Railways have been divided into different zones namely:
- The Central Indian Railways
One of the oldest zones of the Indian railways and one of the largest of the 16 zones formulated by the Indian railways.
- Eastern Indian Railways
This is one of the most important railway zones, with its headquarters in Calcutta (now Kolkata) the Eastern Railways have been further divided into Mald, Howrah, Asansol, Sealdah for better management and operation.
- Northern Indian Railways
One of the nine older zones on the Indian Railways. New Delhi the capital of India serves as the headquarters of the Northern Railways.
- Southern Indian Railways: This was the first railway zone that was formulated after India got liberated from the British.
- Western Indian Railways: With it's headquarters in Bombay (now Mumbai), this is one of the most lively and busiest Indian Railway networks.
To take advantage of the Indian Railways online railway reservation users need to go to the IRCTC (Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation Ltd) website (https://www.irctc.co.in), in addition to making bookings one can check the status of departing and arriving trains, train itineraries, ticket accessibility, postponing and cancelling railway bookings, make tatkal reservations, Indian Railways time table among others.
The special benefits of using the online railway reservation facility is that passengers can reserve their tickets from the comfort of their home or office without having to stand in long queues at railway stations or having to take the trouble to go to a travel agent. An online railway reservation can be done up to 90 days before your desired date of departure, but it is advised to plan your journey way ahead as the availability of tickets can be difficult, especially during vacation and wedding season.
An online railway reservation can be made right till the final reservation chart is made, that is usually 6 hours before the train leaves the station. The person in whose name the online booking has been made needs to prove hid identity and may need t produce an identity document during the course of his journey. These identity cards must be issued by a reputed organization in the Central/State Government and include:
- PAN Card
- Voter ID Card
- Drivers license
Last Updated on 17 May 2011