Indian Railway Refund Rules

Travelling through trains of Indian railways is truly an experience but it has some hassles of its own. The trains are always crowdy, although most of them are now cleaner. Passengers are ever doubtful of getting their tickets confirmed. More so, a miniscule of them know about the refund rules which are more complex than Fermat's last theorem. Today we provide the complete refund rules issued by Indian Railways in layman terms.

First, some of the prerequisites :

  • Train ticket booking and cancellation hours: 12:20 am to 11:45 pm
  • IRCTC service charge for I-ticket(non-refundable)
Class Refund Rules
CC,1AC,2AC,3AC,EC,3E,FC INR 120/ticket+Service tax
Sleeper class,Second class(SL,2S) INR 80/ticket+service tax

Refund Rules:

  • RESERVATION FAILED TRANSACTION : if the amount gets debited from customer's account but ticket does not get issued, complete amount will be refunded to the customer along with service charge. However, the transaction charge can be forfeited.
  • REFUND ON CANCELLATION : the e-tickets will be cancelled online and the amount will be refunded to the customer's account after deduction of applicable charges. The I-ticket will be cancelled at the platform reservation counter and after that, an online application will be submitted.

Current railway refund rules

  1. Cancellation charges for confirmed ticket :
    1. if the ticket is cancelled more than 2 days in advance of train departure, following fixed charges will be deducted:
      Class of your ticket Flat Cancellation charges per passenger
      AC First/Executive Class Rs. 240 service tax extra
      First Class/AC 2 Tier Rs. 200 service tax extra
      AC Chair Car/AC 3 Economy/AC 3 Tier Rs. 180 service tax extra
      Sleeper Class Rs. 120
      Second Class Rs. 60
    2. if the ticket is cancelled between 2 days and up to 12 hours before train departure, 25% fare amount along with the charges as applicable in part A) will be deducted.
    3. if the ticket is cancelled between 12 hours and up to 4 hours before the departure of the train, 50% fare amount along with the charges as applicable in part A) will be deducted.
    4. no fare will be refunded if the ticket is not cancelled or TDR is not filed before 4 hours of departure of train.
  2. Cancellation Charges for RAC or waitlisted ticket :
    1. the refund in case of RAC or waitlisted ticket will be made after deduction of any clerkage applicable. If the ticket is cancelled up to 30 minutes prior to departure of train, then ₹60 per passenger service tax extra will be levied on all AC classes.
    2. no refund will be made if the ticket is cancelled after 30 minutes prior to train departure.
    3. in case of E-tickets, the tickets will be cancelled online or online TDR will be filed and refund will be as mentioned above.
  3. Cancellation Charges for Partially confirmed ticket :
    1. in case of E-tickets, the tickets will be cancelled online or online TDR will be filed and refund will be made accordingly.
    2. in case of family E-ticket where some passengers have confirmed tickets while others are waitlisted or RAC, full refund will be permissible for all tickets after clerkage deduction up to 30 minutes prior to train departure.
    3. in case when a family e-ticket is partially confirmed and the passengers with waitlisted or RAC ticket are not travelling, a certificate will have to be obtained from railway staff on train and fare refund will be processed online. The TDR will have to be filed after max 3 days after arrival of train after which no refund will be entertained.
  4. Cancellation of train :
    1. E-Ticket :
      1. complete amount for confirmed or RAC ticket will be refunded and no online cancellation or TDR filing will be required.
      2. waitlisted tickets will have to be cancelled at least 30 minutes prior to train scheduled departure after which no refund shall be entertained.
    2. I-Ticket :
      1. in case of I-Ticket, tickets can be cancelled up to after 3 days after scheduled train departure at any PRS counter.
  5. Train running more than 3 hours late and passenger did not travel :

    No cancellation charge will be levied on confirmed, RAC or waitlisted ticket if the passenger does not wish to travel on a train which is more than 3 hours late subject to the conditions that:

    1. in case of E-ticket, online TDR will have to be filed prior to actual departure of train for complete refund.
    2. in case of I-Ticket, ticket will have to be surrendered up to the actual departure of train.
    3. no refund will be permissible after the actual departure of the train.
  6. when railway administration is unable to provide accommodation :

    When railway staff is unable to provide seat or berth to passenger holding reserved ticket for any reason, complete refund will be granted to them if they surrender the ticket up to until 3 hours after the actual departure of the train.

  7. refund on partially used ticket :
    1. when a passenger terminates the journey enroute, a TDR will be issued by the station master up to which the journey has been completed. The original certificate issued by railway staff will be delivered through post to Group General Manager/IT, Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation Ltd., Internet Ticketing Centre, IRCA Building, State Entry Road, New Delhi – 110055.
    2. TDR will be issued only up to 3 days after the scheduled departure of the train.
    3. Passenger might apply for fare refund up to 10 days after the scheduled departure of the train.
  8. refund of train fare on failure to provide AC facility in air-conditioned coaches :

    When the ac facility is not provided for part of the journey, refund can be claimed as per the following rules :

    1. for First AC coach, the difference of fare between 1AC and First class.
    2. for 2AC or 3AC, the difference of fare between that coach and sleeper class.
    3. for ac Chair car (CC), difference of fare between CC and Second class.
    4. for executive class (EC), difference of fare between EC and First class Shall be refunded to the passenger.
  9. refund of fare when passenger is made to travel in lower class for want of accommodation :

    In case a passenger is made to travel in a lower class for want of accommodation in the class for which the ticket was issued, the refund made will be difference of fare between the class which was booked and the actual train class travelled.

  10. Tatkal Ticket Cancellation :
    1. no fare refund for confirmed tickets.
    2. grant of fare refund against unused Cancellation charges for waitlisted or RAC ticket will be made according to clause 2.
    3. in case of a partially confirmed family ticket, refund will be made according to clause 3 as the passengers travel or not.
    4. if the train is more than 3 hours late, refund will be made according to clause 5.
    5. Cancellation of train ticket when railway is unable to provide accommodation will be made according to clause 6.
  11. Train ticket booked in premium special trains :

    Refund will only be provided if the train is cancelled, otherwise no cancellation of confirmed or RAC tickets is allowed.

  12. Cancellation of E-ticket :
    1. e-tickets can be cancelled online until chart preparation and refund will be granted as per railway refund rules.
    2. after preparation of chart, same passenger who booked the ticket will have to file TDR online for claiming fare refund and the amount will be credited to his/her bank account which was used to make the booking. The refund will be made according to railway refund rules.
    3. no refund shall be provided against partially confirmed E-tickets in which no passenger has travelled if TDR is filed after 30 minutes prior to departure time of the train.
    4. no refund will be provided against partially RAC or waitlisted E-tickets in which no passenger has travelled if TDR is filed after 30 minutes prior to departure time of the train.
    5. no refund will be provided if the train is running more than 3 hours late and TDR is filed after the actual departure of the train.
    6. If customer is unable to cancel the ticket through IRCTC website, customer is required to send a mail to etickets@irctc.co.in.
    7. The situation in which TDR filed is concluded by the concerned Railway Zone under whose jurisdiction the train destination falls, after receipt of the fare refund amount from the concerned Railway Zone, refund amount will be credited back to same bank account which was used to make the booking.
  13. Cancellation of I-ticket :
    1. the I-ticket cannot be cancelled online.
    2. in case no facility for cancellation of RAC or waitlisted tickets is provided at the source railway station for night trains leaving between 9PM and 6AM, the refund will be permissible up to 2 hours after the booking counter gets opened.
    3. In remote and hilly areas, as recognized by the Railway, for night trains leaving between 7.00 pm and 6.00 am (actual departure time), the refund will be granted at the railway station within first 2 hours after the reservation office or booking office gets open.
    4. no fare refund in cash is available at PRS booking counter, the fare will be refunded to the bank account which was used to make the booking.
    5. In case TDR has to be filed for claiming refund, it will be available from the concerned station.

Note- the E-ticket TDR refund eligibility rules for various cases should be checked on the official website of Indian railways.