Any one who can book a tatkal ticket on a busy route is a genius, yes, virtually. You know, the tickets will sell out almost with in 5 minutes as and when the tatkal system is opened at
8 am 10am, 2 days 1 day before the travel date. So why does this happen?
The most obvious answer is ‘heavy rush’. Imagine thousands of people hitting the same ‘Tatkal’ button when the clock ticks 10 am. Obviously, there are limited number of tatkal berths reserved for each train and often this number is less than 50% of total available berths, which makes it even more difficult to get a berth in tatkal.
Tips for booking tatkal ticket
There are some tips though, which can help you book your tatkal ticket. The system starts to get heavy starting from
7.45am 9.45am, so log in before that time. Check all the fields that are required to be filled like the information of passengers, address, ID proof etc and write it down on a notepad/word document so that you can quickly copy paste the information as and when the tatkal window opens. You know, every second counts.
Or, you can take advantage of auto-fill feature that most modern browsers offer. After you enable this feature in your browser, on the day before you actually book your tatkal ticket, just try to book another tatkal ticket for some other train. Enter all information and submit it to go to the payment page but stop there. All the information you type on the previous page will be saved in the browsers cache and will be available the next time you start typing something in the same fields.
Be careful with the payment process, a lot of things can go wrong, especially when you are in a hurry. Since the system will be heavy, it might take some time for your payment to be confirmed (redirect to the IRCTC page from your Bank’s site/credit card billing). Some times, the webpage may also time out requiring you to log in again. In such cases, check with your bank before you proceed to book again.
There is another way to book your tatkal tickets, which is by going to a station instead of trying online. Clerks in the reservation counter book your tickets through their Internal network system which is not affected by the traffic that outsiders experience on the IRCTC site. Big stations often have too many people standing in line, so it is no better than heavy online traffic. So if you can go to a nearby small station, you will have an advantage. But do note that tatkal booking will only be available for half an hour (10 to 10.30am) at railway station counters.