IRCTC, India’s largest e-ticketing website, is soon going to offer a COD option for travellers to buy railway tickets. According to a recent report by Mint, the COD service that IRCTC wants to bring will be made available through a partnership with Noda based BookMyTrain.com and is expected to go live in a month or so.
This new service is basically targeted at the people living in the rural areas, and for those who still shy away from using credit/debit cards and other means of online payments. In short it will also be a big time help for the travellers who pay commission to agents for booking their train tickets online and thus will cut down the role of agents.
Adding on it will also cut down the high transaction failure rate.
Though travel sites like Makemytrip, Cleartrip and Yatra also provide online booking of tickets but none of them have made option of COD available. IRCTC will be the first one to bring in this new concept.
Domain BookMyTrain.com has been registered by Noida-based Anduril Technologies Pvt. Ltd., incubated by Amity Innovation Incubator, an initiative by Amity Business School. The website, currently is not live but the banner on the website directly points out that this report is somewhat true.
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There has been no confirmation from IRCTC and BookMyTrain about the same but according to a source close to the development, IRCTC has already integrated systems with the third-party platform and the pilot should be live soon. The new service will be made available initially in over 100 cities.
Once the website goes live, BookMyTrain will be responsible for delivery of tickets, cash management and cancellations.
According to IRCTC currently, about 42% tickets are booked online by using Internet banking, 24% by use of credit or debit cards, and the rest use prepaid cash cards or other mediums.
“At present, we book around 10,000 tickets online per minute, which is beyond our expectations. When we launched this service, our target was to book 7,200 tickets per minute. With over 200,000 agents booking through IRCTC, we are gearing up for higher ticketing per minute,” Rajni Hasija, group general manager—information technology at IRCTC, said earlier at a conference.
Though IRCTC has been criticized by users a number of times, be it in case of high transaction failure rate which is close to 30% because of poor Internet connectivity, long process of online payments, and inefficiencies in the system.
The new service will not only a big time savior for IRCTC from the payment chaos but also will help in increasing the number of tickets booked online. But on the other side might act an expensive step due to cost of delivery being involved plus cost of cancellations that it might have to bear.