Budget 2017-18: IRCTC tickets set to become cheaper


In case you happen to be someone who frequently uses IRCTC to book railway tickets online, there is some good news coming your way. In the Union Budget 2017-18 presented by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley earlier today, he announced that service charges on tickets booked using IRCTC would be withdrawn. This is not the first time that the government has withdrawn service charges on tickets booked using the official website or the app. The same was applicable until December 31, 2016 during the time the country was reeling under the effects of demonetization.

As of now, customers pay a service charge of ₹20 for each sleeper ticket and ₹40 for all AC Class tickets booked via IRCTC. You will be able to save this amount on IRCTC henceforth. The Finance Minister, however, did not confirm as to when the new service tax regime would be effective from. Although, later it was revealed that the changes would be effective for tickets booked after April 1, 2017.

The decision to waive off service charge from IRCTC tickets is also seen as a move that will boost the number of cashless transactions in India. In fact, during the period of demonetization, the Railways registered a huge surge in the number of cashless transactions – from 58% to 68%. Also, starting now, members of the Indian military can book tickets using IRCTC under special quota online. This was only possible offline until now.

[Image Via Wikimedia Commons]