Now book your train tickets using your mobile phones. SMS-based and USSD (Menu-based dialling) based ticketing system goes live now. This service is available anywhere and anytime WITHOUT using Internet connection. During the launch event Railway Minister Mallikarjun Kharge said that the service aims to “empower the common man who does not have access to internet and cannot afford to buy smartphones.”
From now train passengers will be able to use their mobile phones to book tickets. The service offers two options to book tickets using mobile phone – through a simple text-messaging-based-SMS facility or a menu-based dialling service (USSD service).
SMS Based Booking (How to book a train tickets through SMS?)
SMS based ticket services are currently offered by Bharat BPO and Frequency Weekly through numbers – 139 and 5676714 respectively. This service is also offered by Pyro Group.
– Book Ticket by sending SMS at 139:
Those looking to book tickets by sending an SMS to 139 will have to first register their mobile numbers with IRCTC and their banks. Users will then receive an MMID or Mobile Money Identifier and OTP or one time password from the bank for payment authorization. Registered IRCTC users can now Book railway tickets by just sending two simple SMSes. Booking confirmation SMS is sent by IRCTC.
Step 1- An sms to be sent to 139 from your registered mobile. SMS will have to be sent in the following format -
BOOK <TrainNo> <FromCity> <ToCity> <TravelDate(DDMM)> <Class> <Passenger1-Name> <Age> <Gender> <Passenger2-Name> <Age> <Gender> (upto 6 passengers)
Book 12556 NDLS GKP 0607 SL Ratan 24 M Vivek 25 M
After sending SMS users will receive a message from 139 carrying the following unique parameters — Transaction ID, Ticket Amount, Service Charge, Total Amount payable, Seat Availability.
Step 2- After receiving the above parameter, to make the payment, user will have to send an SMS to 139 in the following format -
PAY <Transaction ID as received> <IMPS is the mode of payment)> <Your MMID as received from the bank> <OTP is your one time password received for this transaction> <IRCTCUserID>
PAY 2501368 IMPS <MMID> <OTP> Ratan
After this a message will be received from 139 on successful booking of the ticket.
– Book Ticket by sending SMS at 5676714:
Passengers can also book their tickets by sending an SMS to 5676714. User will have to first register their mobile number with IRCTC and m-wallet. Registered IRCTC users can now Book railway tickets by following these steps. Booking confirmation SMS is sent by IRCTC.
Step 1- Start with SMS “RAIL” to 5676714
Step 2- START<irctc user Id> to 5676714 from registered mobile number.
Step 3- To book the ticket, users will have to send an SMS to 5676714 in the following format -
BOOK <From stn.code>,<to stn.code>,<DDMMYY>, <Trainno>,<Class>,<passenger name>,<age>,<M/F>
Step 4- After this user will receive a message about availability details, transaction ID and fare. A second SMS will have to be sent to make the payment in the following formates:
PAY <transaction no>, <MPAY>, <m-PIN> for authorizing payment through MPAY
PAY <mobileno>,<mmid>,<amount>,<transaction Id>,<OTP> for authorizing payment through IMPS.
Once they’ve made the payment, users will receive a booking confirmation SMS on their phone.
Update: The SMS based ticketing service is available to all mobile subscribers and Rs.3 is being charged per SMS and payment gateway charges are Rs.5 for ticket amount upto Rs.5,000 and Rs.10 for more than Rs.5,000.
– Book Ticket by service offered by Pyro Group:
This service requires installation of BSNL PrePaid Card Application in your Java based phone. The SMS-based ticketing service through BSNL will require users to have a BSNL SIM card, a Java-enabled phone and an Andhra Bank Prepaid card. User will have to enter details in a step-by-step process using the application. To register, they will have to first install the application and select the “Register” option to get the Mpin.
USSD (Menu-based dialling) Based Booking:
USSD Services are currently offered by Airtel Money. Airtel subscribers will have to dial *400# on their mobiles. User will receive a Menu Based Screen dialling. Select ‘book tickets’ option, select ‘reservation’ (user is prompted to enter his IRCTC user ID once only), enter details (date of journey, station, train no, class, etc). Enter mPIN for authorizing payment through mobile wallet. Booking confirmation SMS is sent by IRCTC.
For this Service user will have to register for Airtel Money and then load cash on this or recharge at any Airtel money outlet. For more details to book a train ticket using Airtel Money Click Here.