New Delhi, Jan 13: Foreigners will soon be allowed to book train tickets online from abroad using their credit/debit cards as the IRCTC is strengthening its ticketing site to meet the demand.
We are incorporating certain checks and balances in our website to provide booking facility for foreigners, IRCTC Chairman and Managing Director A K Manocha told a news agency.
Currently, foreigners book their tickets online through tour operators. Buddhist circuit trains, Palace on Wheel, Maharaja and other tourist specials are popular with foreigners and tickets are booked in the trains generally through tour operators.
Earlier, the facility was existing but it was withdrawn after a few cases of misuse of credit cards came to light, Manocha said, adding the issues have been addressed to prevent misuse making the system a safe booking exercise.
IRCTC, a railways PSU, has taken a series of steps to strengthen its website in the recent past including multilayers security measures against hacking.
We have engaged Standardisation Ticketing and Quality Control (STQC), a website security audit expert, to check the system and they have certified that the site is safe, he said.
In 2014-15, total 183,021,842 tickets were booked on IRCTC ticketing site. There were about 14.9 crore tickets booked till December 2015. At present, about 58 per cent of total tickets sold are booked online.
IRCTC has given about Rs 18,000 crore to railways from ticket sale last year and this year it is expected to touch Rs 25,000 crore mark, Manocha said. IRCTC ticketing site is currently equipped to take the load of 15,000 tickets in a minute which means 250 tickets in a second.