Please Help Explain Waiting Lists!! & Booking problems?

#1 Feb 5th, 2008, 04:40
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  • chrisowen is offline
#1
Hi everyone,
First of all, this is my 1st post - and I have been studying this site religiously!! I want to say hats off to the regulars who are dispensing so much valuable info!!!

I am sitting in my London Flat trying to decipher the Waiting List system, anticipating my trip to India in 3 weeks time. Could someone Plese help?? (Steven Ber, perhaps? Your advice seems brilliant! Help a fellow London-Dweller out, please!)

I am looking to book an overnight sleeper Train from Varanasi - NJP, if possible in time for the "Toy Train" departure. date = 3rd of 4th March. From indian rail website, I found train #2506. 2AC availability is REGRET/WL1"............. What does this mean-Do I have a good chance of getting a confirmed berth?

If I drop to 3AC Status, it is "WL3/WL3" or "WL2/WL2". Similarly, if we go for 3AC, are we likely to get berths. Also, how is 3AC, to a "First timer" in India - Is it relatively clean and safe? Main concern is stuff getting nicked.

Thanks for you help.

C
Last edited by machadinha; Feb 11th, 2008 at 05:25.. Reason: merged threads, adjusted title
#2 Feb 5th, 2008, 05:15
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  • machadinha is offline
#2
Hi, and welcome to IndiaMike.

If you scroll to the bottom of this page, you'll find a listing of "similar threads." Opening any of those will again feature a list of similar threads at bottom, and so on and so forth. It's an easy way to navigate the site, and I'm sure it will be explained on one of those.

Good luck with it. On the various classes, you'll find some opinions here: http://www.indiamike.com/india/polls...-train-t12770/

Another good page is at http://www.irfca.org/faq/faq-travel.html , which also addresses waitlists.
#3 Feb 5th, 2008, 05:19
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#3
Hello Chris and welcome to indiamike.com

You should forget about a train arriving in time for the DHR (toy train), trains in the region are very often delayed by an hour or 2, and as you've already seen the train times, you'll know that the best timed train (2506) arrives only 40 minutes before the toy train departs.

Can you fit in the DHR as you return from Darjeeling?

Regret/WL = no more tickets will be sold.

WL3/WL3 isn't good, not that the number is high, it's because there is only 4 berths in 2A and 5 berths in 3A allocated for the Mughal Sarai-NJP sector, so little chance of cancellations.

3AC is very safe, I always feel safer on Indian trains than I do in England, just don't accept food from strangers, keep your passport/money in a money belt, and lock your luggage to the wire under the lower berths using a small chain and lock.
#4 Feb 5th, 2008, 20:02
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#4
Thanks for the quick reply !

I have tried booking throught the IRCTC website, and I need a little more advice...

I noticed that on the Indian rail website, there were actually 4berths available in 2AC for the Varanasi-NJP Train, if I chose the "foreign tourist" quota... So I went to the IRCTC website to book under the Foreign TOurist quota - And that option wasnt available ! Only "Taktal", E-TIcket and I-TIcket......
Is there a foreign Tourist quota option that I didnt see??

Also, when I went to book another train (O/Nite Agra Fort - Varanasi, #4864 (29 FEB).. Which had availability... But when i went to make payment, there was no option for credit cards other than indian Bank cards! A I missing someting? I can't find any booking facilities which cater to foreign tourists booking abroad...

please help once again with some words of wisdom

Thanks so Much

C
#5 Feb 6th, 2008, 03:30
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#5
The Foreigner's/Tourist Quota was discussed again just now here: http://www.indiamike.com/india/439979-post471/ . Please note I don't know the ins and outs of it either, I just left some thoughts there. But basically, I believe that quota can't be booked from abroad/online.

There are constant reports on different credit cards working and not working for various persons. I've never tried, but it gets discussed a lot. I guess if you go back to the beginning of that (massive) thread or scroll through it, you'll find information on it. In fact I know it was discussed there recently, so you could just scroll back a couple of pages on that thread. All I know is apparently it takes persistence, may involve you using different gateways (? not sure what those are at all), or a different card altogether.

Good luck with it.
#6 Feb 11th, 2008, 05:14
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#6

On-going Problems with IRCTC Website

Hi guys,

Not too long ago I posted a thread Regarding not being able to purchase train tickets on the IRCTC Site..... However, after patience, persistence and ALOT of trial and Error, I made it thru!!!! I booked 1 out of 3 overnight trips, and have Email Confirmation !!! THanks to the IM Site, the impossible became possible !!

So, I thought I was on a role after that wee success.... Alas, I have won the 1st battle, but the war still rages...

I am now trying to book Ticket #2, Mughal Serai-New Jaipalguri. 3rd march, AC3. However, I get as far as entering my name / age. sex / food type (for meal), and then I hit "Go"-Only to recieve numerous "Communication failures" !!

I dont hit back/Refresh, I clear cookies and temp files religiously, I even set up a new Account in my Girlfriends name!! It seems that after my 1st success, all opportunities have been closed down... And I have to watch the availability number drop like a stone, while other lucky people get through !!

Any Tips anyone?? Do I just keep on trying, at un-godly hours of the morning, and when my boss isnt watching??

Cheers, C
Last edited by machadinha; Feb 11th, 2008 at 05:52.. Reason: merged threads
#7 Feb 11th, 2008, 05:29
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#7
A communication failure means just that: There is a failure somewhere down the line, it's hard to say where.

Nothing for it I guess but to keep trying, and/or try to have all your data at the ready and enter it as fast as possible on a swift connection, and/or simply try again later. Keep an eye on Indian business hours, when that site may be very busy. (Conversely, I'm not sure about today, but it used to be outside of those hours the bookings site couldn't be used.)

As already said above, it gets discussed here all the time. Again, try to scroll back a few pages on that "Booking Tickets" thread mentioned just above, where it's certainly been discussed of late. You could try starting from this post and onwards, but I only know that because I stuck my nose in there (and I've never actually had to use the sytem), I'm sure it's been discussed a zillion times before on that thread.

Try also for instance http://www.indiamike.com/india/india...ighlight=pants , but there are many many such threads.

ps

Quote:
I clear cookies and temp files religiously,
That's probably what you don't want to do during such a booking process. That's where you'll be storing any info you're filling in into the different fields. (Along those same lines, make sure you give that site what permissions it needs. I.e., to store cookies or use pop-up windows or whatever else it may need.) My understanding (but again, I've never actually used the site for a booking, I know similar sites though) is it may be possible to get all your fields filled in, then hit submit in your final swift move. I was just having a fight over time-outs and stuff with another country's rails site though (the UK's, to be precise), sites like that are just often blurdy annoying, and I tend to block a lot of stuff by default that they call for but should technically be well able to do without. If you suspect the latter is causing you trouble and you can't find a way to simply adjust it, give it a try on a different machine.
#8 Feb 11th, 2008, 06:01
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#8

Cheers for the reply !

Nice to hear a reply again, thanks heaps.....

Well, it's 23:28, 2 more minutes and IRCTC is open for Business! I stayed up especially, I'm hungover and Monday is going to be tough @ work.. But if i get those tickets, by GOD it'll be worth it !!!

I'll keep you posted (literally) on how I get on....
#9 Feb 12th, 2008, 00:43
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#9

Any alternatives to using IRCTC (""Communication failures" !!)?

Hi.
Seems like everyone else is experiencing similar issues to me..
When trying to pay by American Express on IRCTC, i always get "Communication Failures"...
I tried calling their customer service line, pressed "Option 4", and was politely told by the automated teller, "You are being disconnecte, thankyou, goodbye"??
Im flying to India this friday and need to book various train tickets, ideally before i go there to prevent unavailabilty.
Does anyone have any useful suggestions?
Or know of any travel operators in the UK which can book train tickets for a small fee?
Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated, cus im running out of ideas!

Thanks!!!
#10 Feb 12th, 2008, 00:48
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#10
There are no alternatives.

S.D.Enterprises (Wembley, London) can book train tickets (using Indrail passes), but they like to book more than 2 months in advance, and will sometimes book up to a month in advance, but I very much doubt they will book less than a month in advance.

You'll find a link to their website in the train info thread.

Here's a copy of info I put in another thread, about problems booking tickets, it may help.

Quote:
Members normally suggest the CITI bank gateway, and the 2nd gateway in the list (these may be the same one).

Also, you need to type as fast as you can (acc number copied, ready to paste, and all other details written down) to avoid timeouts.

And if all else fails, contact your bank, sometimes banks don't allow the payments because they don't fit in with your usual spending patterns. (dozens of people have reported this problem)

Good luck.
If all else fails, try a foreign tourist window/centre when you arrive in India.
#11 Feb 12th, 2008, 01:02
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#11
Steven, as usual thanks for the quick reply and clarification.
I'll keep trying to book online as you suggested.
Failing this, i'll take a chance and book all my train tickets as soon as i arrive in Delhi.
Presumably its possible to book tickets for different journeys (delhi to varanasi, jaipur to jodhpur etc) all at the same time at the Delhi ticket kiosk?
Does anyone have any idea quickly seats in AC3/2nd Sleeper sell out? Just wondering how availability booking 3 days in advance...
Thanks!!
#12 Feb 12th, 2008, 03:53
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#12
Quote:
Originally Posted by electroniclogin View Post Does anyone have any idea quickly seats in AC3/2nd Sleeper sell out? Just wondering how availability booking 3 days in advance...
Thanks!!
Over 12,000 trains a day (nearly all full) means there is no answer to your question.

Consider this, I know virtually every trick in the book regarding routes, alternative routes, quotas and how to take advantage of them, Tatkal bookings, but I struggled to get trains when I was booking 5 or 6 days ahead on my last trip.

You'll be OK around Rajasthan though, most places are connected by bus.

Yes, you can book tickets in Delhi to go from anywhere to anywhere.
#13 Feb 14th, 2008, 04:24
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#13

Still no luck - I need some more answers!!!

Hi again,

since I last spoke, I have had little luck......

For 4 days in a row, I continually got communication failures after I had entered my name/berth preference/age etc.....

However, this was ONLY happening on the specific train I was booking-this train had availability 4, then went down to 2,and is now WL/2.

The type of communicatin failure I was getting was the same as when I tried to book a berth with "Waiting list" status-however, there were available seats, according to both Indian rail and IRCTC websites! I dont understand!

So now, I need some advice on my new predicament - We will just have to try our luck on the tourist office in Delhi, and fingers crossed.

My question is this: If we book a ticket on a WL/2 or WL/3 berth, and no berths become available by the time we catch the train, what happens next? Do we just get on board, but go in sleeper class? Or do we not even get the chance to go on the train??

We will be booking trains from Delhi on 26 FEB, to try and catch the MGS-NJP overnight train on 3rd March. Current Waiting list = WL2 / WL2, for 3AC............... What are our chances? Please answer !


CHeers again to everyone.

C

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