Sunday, May 23, 2010

#irctc - waiting list - cancellation

Indian railways confirms one ticket in a family ticket where two ladies are travelling along with two kids. There were three tickets in waiting list 123 for past month and half.

On the D-day one got confirmed.
What will you do with your travel plans if you got into a scenario like that?

I got a message yesterday night when I was trying to sleep from chunnu saying "Are you awake?". I ignored the message tuned and cursed the banks for sending their promotions late at night.

Moments later I got a call from papa asking what to do in a scenario like this. You love the times in life when you dont know anything but are expected to advise. Mostly such advice gets ignored but you still give. I suggested they go to station and check with the great indian railways ticket collector, the men in black.

Then I called chunnu in acknowledgment of his message. After all the message was not from bank. He informed me that the waiting list tickets get automatically canceled. I had never heard of such event and was surprised to know if such a thing was possible.

I could have canceled tickets then and there and everybody would have had a peaceful next morning. But the devil likes to go to the edge and seeing you scream will allow you to back. I thought lets wait and see till next morning if something can be done.

Next day I got a call at 5 asking what to do. Should we go or not? The scenario is complex because they have to travel nearly 100kms to reach railway station and then if things don't work out go back again. Not a pleasant thing to do on a regular summer day in north India.

I went to the www.irctc.co.in and found the call center numbers. The delhi ones dropped dead, chennai one picked up in sleep voice and he advised "Go to station and find out from ticket collector".

Luckily there is a plan B and they could utilize that.

In plan the same train goes the next day and they have have seating in second class. They were under impression that it takes three days. I told my daughter no, it does not, it takes 2 days. She said "Did you cancel the third day?". I really felt like GOD at that moment. Sometimes your daughters elevate you to mount Everest and you feel in heaven.

Suggestion for Indian railways irctc system. If you confirm waiting list 1234 from a family booking atleast confirm 12 otherwise ignore the booking and give the seating to waiting list number 5. It could be a cause of some pain to lots of stakeholders involved. Thank you.
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