If you are a pet owner and enjoy travelling with your furry friends, you may have faced difficulties while booking tickets for them on trains. However, Indian Railways is now working to provide a solution for you.
The Ministry of Railways has recently proposed an online ticket booking facility for pet dogs and cats, which would allow you to book tickets for your pets from your home and avoid the long queues at the parcel booking counters.
Booking Process Earlier
Previously, pet owners had to visit the parcel booking counters on the day of travel and book 1st Class AC tickets, cabins, or coupes and reserve the entire coupe.
Passengers were also permitted to carry their pets in a box in the second-class luggage and break van, which was inconvenient for pet owners.
Proposal and Changes
To address this issue, the Ministry of Railways is considering online ticket booking for pets. The proposal includes an online booking facility for pets in AC-1 class of trains, allowing TTEs to book pets onboard.
The Railway Board has instructed CRIS (Centre for Railway Information Systems) to make changes to the software so that the facility for online booking of animals can be added to the IRCTC website.
Once the online service is operational, railway passengers will be able to book animal tickets online on the IRCTC website using their mobile or computer after the first chart of the train is prepared.
However, this will only be possible if the passenger’s ticket is confirmed.
The TTE will also have the authority to book tickets for pets, which will be kept in the SLR coach, and reserved for the guard. Owners can provide water, food, etc. to their pets at train stoppages.
However, there are some conditions for booking animal tickets online. The passenger’s ticket must be confirmed, and if the passenger cancels the ticket, no refund will be given for the animal ticket.
If the train is cancelled or delayed by more than three hours, the pet ticket fee will not be refunded either. Only the passenger’s ticket will be refunded.
Guidelines for Pet Owners
If you plan to travel with your pet, you must book your ticket online and carry a photocopy of it. Additionally, make sure your pet has all the required vaccinations and relevant IDs, including a fitness certificate from a veterinarian 24-48 hours before departure. You must bring water, food, and a toy to keep your pet comfortable and entertained during the journey.
Guidelines for Pet Travel on Trains
You must bring your dog to the luggage office at least three hours before the train’s departure for booking, regardless of whether you have a PRS ticket or an online ticket from IRCTC. Additionally, you must pay applicable baggage fees if you carry your dog with you in AC First Class or First Class coupe.
You cannot carry your dog in AC2 tier, AC 3 tier, AC Chair Car, Sleeper Class, or Second-Class compartments, and if other passengers complain, your dog will be moved to the guard’s van without a refund.
You must have a certificate from a veterinarian that specifies the breed, colour, and gender of your dog for booking. You are solely responsible for the safe transport of your pet and must provide water and food during the journey. However, you can carry puppies in a basket in any accommodation class.
The proposed online ticket booking facility for pet dogs and cats in Indian Railways is expected to provide convenience and comfort to pet owners travelling with their furry friends.