Indian Railways

4.2
2,577 customer reviews
  • Schedule
  • About
  • Stations
  • Reviews

About Indian Railways

Company information

Indian Railway is the government-owned national railway system. Together with its subsidiary, Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation, or IRCTC, which handles the catering, tourism and online ticketing operations, the Indian Ministry of Railways operates the world's fourth largest railway network.

Experiencing the bustle of Indian railway stations is a quintessentially Indian experience and your trip across the country will not be complete without taking an Indian train.

Currently there are no high-speed trains in the country but by 2022 about 100 Indian Railway new trains will be added to the rolling stock to increase the speed of services.

Indian Railway Network

18 zones and 73 divisions of Indian Railways cover every corner of the country except its northernmost tip with about 6,800 stations served. The total length of the rail routes reaches almost 70,000 km.

Some of the most popular railway routes include…
From Delhi to:

To Delhi from:

Elsewhere:

Indian Railway luxury trains

Besides usual passenger transportation, special tourist trains of the Indian Railway service popular tourist circuits across the country. Offered by IRCTC, there are combo packages for such routes that include rail travel and local transportation plus accommodation, food and guided tours.

These luxury tourist trains offer a 5-star hotel comfort with a variety of top-notch facilities available on-board.

India’s most celebrated luxury train is The Palace on Wheels that makes an 8 day-7 night circular trip around Rajasthan starting and terminating it in New Delhi.

Other luxury trains of India include:

  • Royal Rajasthan on Wheels covers destinations in Rajasthan.
  • Maharajas Express is a seasonal train, which runs on 5 different routes.
  • Deccan Odyssey brings visitors to Maharashtra and Goa.
  • Golden Chariot offers two routes in Indian South.
  • Fairy Queen hauled by the world’s oldest operating steam engine, connects Delhi to Alwar.
  • Buddhist Circuit Train, or Mahaparinirvan Express caters for Buddhist pilgrims.

Indian Railway Schedule

The complete Indian Railway timetable can be found on the official IR website.
For destination-specific information and availability of rail service please do revert to our website.
There is also a very handy tool for checking IR train cancellations and rescheduling. Called ‘National Train Enquiry System’ (NTES), it features a train tracker and allows to check seat availability, too.

IR trains – what to expect

There are three classes of AC sleeper carriages, or Indian Railway berth carriages.

  • The first class (AC1 or A1) is obviously the best choice with its two- or four-berth compartments.

  • Second class AC sleeper carriages are also ok with an open planning and four berths in each bay.

  • Third class AC features 6 berths per bay and is also open-plan.

  • SL, or Sleeper Class does not have AC and often becomes overcrowded. It is also open-plan with 6 bunks per bay. It is cheap and provides better opportunities for photos as windows can be opened here. Bedding is not provided even on longer routes.

  • There are 3 Chair Classes with Executive Chair Class (EC) with soft reclining seats and AC being the top choice though you will not find this class on every train.

  • CC, or standard AC Chair Class is a good choice for daytime journeys.

  • 2S, or Second Class Seats are not recommended for long or overnight routes.

Indian Railway Fares and Tickets

Rail travel in India is wonderfully affordable and often more time-effective on longer routes than taking a plane.

Indian Railway reservation opens 120 days prior to the departure date for longer routes and 15–30 days in advance – for shorter routes.

Similarly, these are the time limits for Indian Railways online ticket booking.

Indian trains often do become fully booked weeks before departure date so it is highly recommended to reserve your berth or seat as early as possible.

Tatkal tickets

If you fail to book your ticket in advance there is still a chance to get a last-moment deal.

The system that allows passengers to grab tickets on trains which are fully booked long before the departure date is called ‘tatkal’.

Meaning ‘immediate’ in Hindu, Tatkal booking system opens at 10 am the day before travel. It basically means that Tatkal ticket booking time and period vary depending on the departure time of your train and can be from 14 hours to almost 38 hours before the actual departure.

There is a small amount of seats and berths reserved for Tatkal tickets on many popular trains. Tatkal ticket price is slightly higher than a standard fare.

Train tickets booking in India

Indian railway tickets can be booked online or if you are already in India bought at the stations.

For online ticket booking, your options include both the official Indian Railways booking website, or IRCTC, and private agencies.

The first option gives you full access to all the trains, Tourist Quotas, Reservations Against Cancellations, Wait lists and Tatkal booking. On the negative side is the necessity to go through a rather complicated registration process.

The second option costs slightly more but considering that Indian train tickets do not cost much, it is a minor issue. Also, such ticketing agencies, including us, neither sell RAC tickets nor put you on waitlists – all tickets booked are booked and confirmed. With this option, Indian Railway online booking is an easy and fast process.

Pros

  1. Indian Railways connect all major and many of the minor destinations across the country. Basically, you can travel between almost any two destinations in India by train.

  2. Indian railway tickets are very affordable.

  3. Indian train booking system is unique and may seem too complex with its Tourist quota, Reservations Against Cancellations, Wait lists and Tatkal but nevertheless efficient.

  4. Travelling by train in India is the best way to get glimpses of the real local life and mingle with the locals.

Cons

  1. In many cases, if you want to travel in an AC sleeper carriage, you need to reserve much in advance.

  2. Carriages of cheaper classes even with reserved berths or seats (SL and second class seats) may become overcrowded.

  3. Cleanliness of toilets is often an issue in cheaper classes.

Read more
2 Passengers

Indian Railways Stations

KudalKarmaliMadgaonErnakulam JnBanaswadiGorakhpurKSR BangaloreNasik RoadChennai EgmoreChennai CentralVaranasi CityAurangabadGaya JnGwalior JnAgra CanttKolkataChittaurgarhJaipurBellary JnBharatpur JnAgra FortSawai MadhopurAlappuzhaThiruvananthapuram CentralThanjavurUdaipurBikaner JnJaisalmerMumbai DadarVasco Da GamaNautanwaKhajurahoSarnathPondicherryLucknow CityNew DelhiDelhiJodhpur JnPune JnMysore JnHospet JnThivimMumbai CentralHowrahKanpur CentralPatna JnHazrat NizamuddinHyderabad DecanMadurai JunctionVijayawada JnKalka Railway StationBhopal JnRaipur JnMumbai CSTLonda JnAmritsar JnDelhi CanttVisakhapatnamYesvantpurNagpurAhmedabad JnDelhi Sarai RohillaHaridwar JnGhaziabadVaranasi JnKashi Railway StationSecunderabadJalpaiguriAjmer JnNew JalpaiguriBandra TerminusKota JnSuratIndore Jn BgSealdahDarjeelingSiliguri JunctionShimlaMangalore CentralLokmanya Tilak TermMangaloreErnakulam Town NorthJammu TawiDehradunLucknow NRAnand Vihar TrmDelhi Shahdara JNVasai RoadBorivaliPatliputraDighaChandigarhAgartalaPrayagraj JunctionBhubaneswarVadodaraKannurKanyakumariCoimbatoreKozhikode

Indian Railways Company Reviews

A R
Easy to find and board. Only negative was that the train arrived 30 minutes early, which I didn't realize until I had passed my destination station.
Train #12986 CC - AC Chair Class, Indian Railways, Nov 23, 2022
U
The train was quite comfortable , we startet on time and arrived on time. The Waggon was full but the temperature was OK (we started quite in the early morning).Unfortunately me and my wife didn't get 2 places together ,so we had to ask other passengers to switch the place with us. This is what I don't like of 12GO, often you don't have the chance to choose the seat/berth :-(
Train #12636 2S - Second Sitting Class, Indian Railways, Nov 20, 2022
C H
Train was running 3 to 4 hours late......and annoyingly Indian Railways stopped updating the arrival information.
Train #12650 2A - AC 2-Tier Sleeper, Indian Railways, Nov 17, 2022
F
It wasn't crowded at all, so it was fine. Is not a long trip so you can go there and just enjoy what happens around. The train was delayed for arround 40 min, not terrible
Train #19712 SL - Sleeper Class, Indian Railways, Nov 16, 2022
C H
Sleeper train. Interesting experience comfortable and safe......
Train #17057 2A - AC 2-Tier Sleeper, Indian Railways, Nov 16, 2022
C M
12Go was amazing - I can’t speak highly enough of this life-saving company! The train in India however was pretty low quality. As I’m praying a fairly high rate by Indian standards, I would expect higher quality.
Train #22977 CC - AC Chair Class, Indian Railways, Nov 12, 2022
S T
Clean and comfortable train. Right on time. Just a little cold at night with thin sheets and ac blowing right on top of you. Bring something warm
Train #12468 3A - AC 3-Tier Sleeper, Indian Railways, Nov 11, 2022
M B
After controlling my ticket on the train, they made me pay an extra of Rs. 50 saying that the rate had changed. Besides that, the journey went very well. Train left right on time. The platform was no correct though, it was announced at #5 but was stationed at #6.
Train #16558 CC - AC Chair Class, Indian Railways, Nov 10, 2022
E C
uncomfortable beds and right below the AC crate. not really worth the price
Train #16592 3A - AC 3-Tier Sleeper, Indian Railways, Nov 9, 2022
C A
As a foreigner and new user of Indian trains, a little bit more explanation on how to find my train car would be appreciated
Train #16115 2S - Second Sitting Class, Indian Railways, Nov 8, 2022
R P
Best train we've been on so far in India. Breakfast and lunch is provided as part of the ticket price, as is water and a few snacks. The train is very clean and not to mention fast!
Train #82902 CC - AC Chair Class, Indian Railways, Nov 8, 2022
S K
It was simple and straightforward to use this service. I loved having the security of having my train tickets from online ahead of time and 12go.asia made it possible.
Train #12049 CC - AC Chair Class, Indian Railways, Nov 6, 2022
N
The train was 3 hours late (it’s ok for India) but impossible the check the status on the Indian railway website because the train was starting the day before. In the station no indications, fortunately I downloaded an app, without this app, impossible to know where and when the train come. When the train arrived it was not the same number but it was our train 😆 So not a bad experience but we have to be ready to spend time in the station
Train #25014 SL - Sleeper Class, Indian Railways, Nov 6, 2022
I R
Didn't go. It was severely delayed so we took a flight instead
Train #22435 EC - Extended AC Chair Class, Indian Railways, Nov 6, 2022
J J
Me and my girlfriend were not in the same coach in india.. not so great
Train #15014 3A - AC 3-Tier Sleeper, Indian Railways, Nov 5, 2022
J M
Speed to book ,easy to pay and sure to be infomed What else
Train #13240 SL - Sleeper Class, Indian Railways, Nov 2, 2022
A M
Foreign tourists who travelled on 1st AC from Gurgaon to Jaipur. Waiting room was comfortable. Train was easy to navigate. Our 'berths' were comfy with good view and air con, toilets not awful. Overall a very comfortable experience.
Train #12916 1A - AC First Class Sleeper, Indian Railways, Nov 2, 2022
M O
Great from start to finish. Very convenient and clear booking process with 12goasia, the train was on time and clean. Seats are comfortable. Can only recommend it.
Train #12011 CC - AC Chair Class, Indian Railways, Nov 2, 2022
M B
Train was on time and the ride was comfortable.
Train #12014 CC - AC Chair Class, Indian Railways, Nov 1, 2022
T M
Train was on time and clean
Train #12406 2A - AC 2-Tier Sleeper, Indian Railways, Nov 1, 2022
J M
The informations about the train was clear and the journey has been without problem
Train #19815 SL - Sleeper Class, Indian Railways, Oct 31, 2022
P A
Tried to book a train ticket direct with Indian rail. but that did not work. Great that I could book trough you.
Train #12460 CC - AC Chair Class, Indian Railways, Oct 31, 2022
C P
arrived early, free water and meal, reclined seats
Train #12049 CC - AC Chair Class, Indian Railways, Oct 29, 2022
Y
The first class is very bad. It shouldn't be called first class at all!
Train #11842 1A - AC First Class Sleeper, Indian Railways, Oct 28, 2022
M G
Very good apps for train or bus bookings in india.
Train #16057 2S - Second Sitting Class, Indian Railways, Oct 28, 2022
A M
The trip went smoothly and was hassle free.
Train #12634 3A - AC 3-Tier Sleeper, Indian Railways, Oct 27, 2022
M B
It was easy to buy tickets and they worked, we just had a nice train ride from Delhi to Ludhiana
Train #12013 CC - AC Chair Class, Indian Railways, Oct 27, 2022
A L
Customer support with this company is nonexistent. They are not equipped to assist in finding other means of travel when a flight or train gets canceled. I had six legs of my journey in India. I had received six messages that there were failures in the bookings. I have also had six cancellations in the bookings. This company has less than 30% success rate. I am still having to search with another company to get the final leg of my journey booked. I have a few hundred dollars worth of tickets that have canceled. They claim they will refund in 3 to 6 months. Would you care to bet if if they will do that or if I will have to contact my charge card company to get the money back from them?
Train #12195 CC - AC Chair Class, Indian Railways, Oct 25, 2022
R P
Train was over booked and a fight broke out in the carriage behind ours. The service left on schedule, but arrived over an hour late
Train #14212 CC - AC Chair Class, Indian Railways, Oct 25, 2022
C D
Everything was clean, it was a very quick and easy ride.
Train #12050 CC - AC Chair Class, Indian Railways, Oct 19, 2022
M P
Ordering was straightforward and clear. Tickets arrived promptly. It would have been good to know that for Indian railways 1st class if I text 139 and the passenger number, I could have found the cabin number. Train was bang on time. 1st class sleeper was clean, safe and relatively comfortable, though my western hips found the beds a little firm. Honestly, it was waaay better than expected. Loved it!
Train #22995 1A - AC First Class Sleeper, Indian Railways, Oct 19, 2022
E K
Great experience. Understood the carriage numbers and found our berths ok.
Train #13238 1A - AC First Class Sleeper, Indian Railways, Oct 17, 2022
J R
Fantasric
Train #12958 2A - AC 2-Tier Sleeper, Indian Railways, Oct 15, 2022
V K
The train was a bit late. There was AC condensate dripping on me when I was sleeping. Most people were put to the carriage 1A even though the 2A was almost empty.
Train #11013 2A - AC 2-Tier Sleeper, Indian Railways, Oct 15, 2022
J K
Easy to use website, responsive staff and a much easier process for buying train tickets for India then the offical Indian train website.
Train #22988 CC - AC Chair Class, Indian Railways, Oct 15, 2022
G M
3A class will not give you a good nights sleep. Lots of noice, movement and small spaces.
Train #22988 CC - AC Chair Class, Indian Railways, Oct 13, 2022
O J
Amazing service from 12Go - but the train's bed was quite uncomfortable and the aircon was way too cold for the train, especially on an 8 hour journey. There was also 2 people sharing one bed in our 1A cabin which made us uncomfortable at first. My bed had already been used and not changed.
Train #12963 1A - AC First Class Sleeper, Indian Railways, Oct 12, 2022
F A
Unfortunately Not much information in english
Train #20452 1A - AC First Class Sleeper, Indian Railways, Oct 9, 2022
B S
Clean and on time
Train #22692 3A - AC 3-Tier Sleeper, Indian Railways, Oct 9, 2022
K V
The sleeper class in India had less bed space as I expected. Train was late as well - it was an experience, and not a bad one :)
Train #14322 3A - AC 3-Tier Sleeper, Indian Railways, Oct 8, 2022
J
Everything works fine, we can really recommend the first class
Train #12724 1A - AC First Class Sleeper, Indian Railways, Oct 6, 2022
G M
Pleasantly surprised, fresh bedding and good sized beds on the upper and lower berths (side ones are thinner)
Train #12562 2A - AC 2-Tier Sleeper, Indian Railways, Oct 6, 2022
L L
Confortable seats But AC really too high
Train #11029 CC - AC Chair Class, Indian Railways, Oct 4, 2022
G M
Did not meet the hype. Poor seats, ordinary food, screens not working, film over windows reducing views, arrived 1 hour late. No communication and little service Did leave on time though
Train #22119 CC - AC Chair Class, Indian Railways, Oct 3, 2022
U T
Smooth and fast trip with no hassle
Train #12986 CC - AC Chair Class, Indian Railways, Oct 2, 2022
E G
Difficult to find his place !
Train #22987 2S - Second Sitting Class, Indian Railways, Oct 2, 2022
M P
I wouldn’t take a non ac train again. Especially for a trip over 3 hours.
Train #12071 2S - Second Sitting Class, Indian Railways, Sep 30, 2022
M P
Ok trip but I’d go for 2 tier AC next time.
Train #22210 3A - AC 3-Tier Sleeper, Indian Railways, Sep 29, 2022
I K
appreciate if the train operator can make notify arriving stations (through announcement or electronic screening), so that passengers don't miss their arriving stations.
Train #12635 2S - Second Sitting Class, Indian Railways, Sep 28, 2022
P G
Great train . Excellent food but arrived 1 hour late
Train #12029 CC - AC Chair Class, Indian Railways, Sep 27, 2022
4.2
2577 customer reviews
5
47%
4
32%
3
15%
2
6%
1
0%
99.8% of 77,645 travelers were presumably happy with Indian Railways as they left good or no review