PNR stands for Passenger Name Record. It is a 10-digit code generated when reserving a seat for an individual or a group of individuals seeking to travel via Indian Rail route. A single PNR number can be generated for a maximum of six passengers. To get a train PNR number one must submit journey details such as passenger's name, gender, age, train number, journey class, berth preference, a contact link, etc. Once the CRS (Central Reservation System) secures the information, a PNR code is generated.
Trains have limited number of seats and they fill up very quickly. If your booking status comes under waitlist (W/L), it's possible to change when there is any availability of reserved seats due to cancellation. Train PNR number is used in a follow-up process to find out the updated reservation status of the ticket and to check whether it is confirmed or not. You can also check train schedule, train arrival and departure, seat availability, Train coach, train class and category, station code, train name and number using PNR code.
If you have a printed ticket purchased from the railway station booking window, the PNR is placed on the top left corner of the ticket.
Tickets that are booked online or through the IRCTC website are known as E-Tickets, Here the PNR is mentioned at the top in a separate cell.
You can get PNR Status of your ticket in few easy steps :
Go ‘PNR’ tab bar on the top section of pagse
In the text box, enter PNR Number.
Click on Search Button.
Details of Current PNR Status based on your information will be displayed.
There are different ways through which train PNR status enquiry can be checked. The most popular ones are listed below:
PNR status enquiry through online websites.
This is the most simple & convenient way to check your current PNR status, List of some official websites that you can also use for enquiry :
This is Indian Railways official portal. It is designed and maintained by CRIS (Centre for Railway Information Systems).
If you have booked your railway ticket through IRCTC website. Just login into IRCTC website and click on 'Booked Ticket History'. Select your E-Ticket and click 'Get PNR Status'.
PNR enquiry through SMS
Railway has also started SMS services for PNR enquiry. It comes in handy for passengers who do not have access to the internet. Some of the popular ones are :
139 SMS service :
139 SMS service was launched by IRCTC. In order to get PNR status on mobile through SMS, one needs to send the following message to 139.
PNR < your PNR number >
For Example: PNR 1023456789
5676747 SMS service :
This SMS service is maintained by railZone.
sms PNR < your PNR number > and send it to 5676747
For Example: PNR 1023456789
Available on : Aircel, Airtel, BSNL, IDEA, MTNL, MTS, Reliance, TATA, Telenor, Vodafone
Mobile applications :
Mobile apps are a convenient way to stay updated on your booking/PNR status. A good number mobile apps have been developed by unofficial sources for Android, iOS, and Windows phones.
Android: PNR Status, m-Indicator, Indian Rail Guide, IndianRail, Complete Railway Enquiry, CRIS, IRCTC info and more.
IOS: PNR Status, m-Indicator, Indian Rail Guide, IndianRail, CRIS, IRCTC info and more.
Railway enquiry counters at railway station :
For PNR and train details ask the railway counter attendee.
The name of the departure station, destination station, the class you want to travel and the name and number of the train are few of the details required for booking a train ticket :
If you’re looking to book tickets :
You can book through a travel agency or hotel (for a commission).
Buying an E-ticket or online booking can be done through Indian Railways, IRCTC , or portals such as Cleartrip, Make My Trip , Yatra etc are also useful.
Buying a ticket at the train station counter, collect a reservation slip from the information window and submit to the attendee at the station counter.
The Indian Railway reserves a few tickets on certain trains and releases them one day before the train is due to depart at 10am. These tickets have an extra charge ranging from Rs.10 to Rs. 500. Tickets for first AC are not included in this scheme.
It’s ill advised to book tickets last minute. Bookings open about 120 days before departure, all chair-car, executive chair--car, 1AC, 2AC and 3AC carriages can be booked under reservation. No reservations are required for general (2nd-class) compartments. Trains are always busy so it’s wise to book as far in advance as possible, especially for overnight journeys. There may be additional services to certain destinations during major festivals but it’s still worth booking well in advance.
Refunds are available on any ticket, even after departure, with a penalty – check when you book.
Reservation Against Cancellation (RAC)
Indian railways sell a small number of seats in each class after a train is fully booked as ‘Reservation Against Cancellation’ (RAC). These tickets get confirmed only when someone cancels their seats before the departure date. Even if no one cancels, you can still board the train as an RAC ticket holder and travel without a seat. You can check the reservation list at the station notice board on the day of travel to see if you’ve been assigned a confirmed seat/berth.
Final reservation charts
The final reservation chart is usually prepared two to three hours before train departure time.
The chart is displayed on the notice board on Railway station platforms.
In case of waiting list (WL) your ticket confirmed Berth and coach will be available after chart preparation.
If the RAC quota is maxed out, you will be handed a waitlisted ticket ( WL). Keep in mind waiting lists have different types of categories. Here are two of the most popular ones :
General waiting list : (GNWL) This waiting list category get confirmed on highest priority. If your journey is beginning from a station that is closest to the train starting point and ending close to the train destination station, your ticket is likely to get confirmed.
Tatkal Waiting list :(CKWL) This waiting list category only gets reserved if GNWL ticket quota is entirely confirmed. You get CKWL status when tickets are unreserved. There is a lesser chance of getting tickets under this quota confirmed.
Some of the other Waiting list quotas are RLWL (Remote Location Waiting List), RQWL (Request Waiting List), PQWL (Pooled Quota Waiting List), RLGN (Remote Location General Waiting List) and RSWL (Roadside Station Waiting List). Confirmation chances for these types of waitlist tickets are not so great.
E-Ticket or Electronic Ticket is authorized by IRCTC website. But you can also book via online portals such as IRCTC, Indian railway, paytm, yatra, erail etc. If you've booked a E-ticket, a printout is required along with passenger ID during the journey.
An i-ticket can be booked at the reservation counter on the railway station and also by using the IRCTC ticket which is then delivered by courier at your doorstep.