If you were asked 3 toughest tasks to do then getting a confirmed tatkal ticket would surely be the first one. This is something that Rajnikanth wouldn’t bet on doing during Diwalis when the traffic in trains is over the roof.
Is booking a confirmed tatkal ticket on irctc really that tough? I’ve spent over a decade booking train tickets (not as an agent though!) and based on my experience I must tell you that this thing is definitely tearing but still possible if you know the right way to do. And if you know some clever tweaks then you’re in much better position than others for getting a confirmed tatkal train ticket.
1. Create multiple accounts on irctc: By doing this you can try for ticket booking simultaneously from multiple accounts. If booking through one account fails you can continue with the second account and if that too fails you can switch to third account and so on.
One thing to note here is that while trying through different accounts, make sure you login with different browsers. Take Google Chrome for one, and Mozilla and Safari for other accounts.
This is called as Broker’s trick. Here is a video describing its working in detail,
2. Always login 15 minutes prior to tatkal time of 10am. irctc.co.in, the website for online ticket booking in Indian Railways, gets slower as the time nears 10am so its always a better idea to login 10 to 15 minutes advance. If you fail to do this, its likely that you can’t login for the next 10-15 minutes as the sites gets bottle-necked with login requests.
After login, don’t leave the window idle for more than 3 minutes as you’ll be automatically logged out of the website. Keep on searching trains and doing other stuff for browser to think you’re doing something, not sitting idle.
3. Prefill entries: Irctc store details of failed bookings and display them up when booking is tried for the next time. So a great trick is doing a fake reservation attempt by filling passenger entries, and just as you reach the payment page, click on ‘Replan’ button to return back. Now when you go for tatkal booking(for real), all the previously filled information would appear pre-filled thus saving lot of time. Its a gold-trick to save time and create better chances of getting confirmed tatkal ticket.
4. Keep passenger information on the table before starting. While booking tatkal ticket, you need to enter passenger information – name, age and identity card number of one of the travelling passenger.
Time is important in tatkal bootking so make sure you have everything in hand. This can save you vital seconds and help you getting preferred seat alongwith a confirmed tatkal ticket.
5. Work in Short: Move across form fields using keyboard’s tab button. In passenger info, write short form of the name like R Sharma for Rakesh Sharma, N Mishra for Nalini Mishra and so on. Don’t change the existing phone number with yours, and always keep cursor on ‘Submit’ button while filling entries. All these could save you vital seconds which could the difference be between a watlisted ticket and confirmed tatkal ticket.
6. Don’t mark seat preference as mandatory except there is any urgency. While booking tatkal ticket, don’t set lower or upper berth as compulsory as it reduces the seats available for you by nearly half. This is a suicide act hence must not be done if you want to get a tatkal ticket of confirmed quota.
7. Paying by debit/credit card is a better option since its fast. Paying by netbanking is slow as browser has to navigate to and from between irctc, payment gateway and the bank’s internet banking portal so there are every changes of transaction getting late.
In debit/credit card there are just 2 ends – the payment gateway and the irctc website so its faster, hence the preferred option for paying on irctc.
8. No returning back after starting: Doesn’t matter if you’ve made mistake in passenger name or age, there is no time to restart the tatkal booking process after starting. If you do, you’ll get late and fail to get a confirmed ticket. Everything is fine till you haven’t wronged the details of person having the identity card.
9. Work fast on keyboard: It’s very important for person booking tatkal ticket to be Rajnikanth-like on computer. Typing speed must be fast and the person must be aware of the entire ticket booking process. Also it’s important to enter correct entries. Time is the most important factor, little mistake can spoil the cherry for you.
10. There are some trains that allow tatkal ticket booking upto 2 days in advance. This is because their schedule is such that two trains of same name depart from source within the tatkal time of 10am and the midnight of next day. Some trains include Brahmaputra mail, Kerala Express. So if you fail to do confirm tatkal ticket booking on a given day you can give a shot on the succeeding day.