Indian Railways commuters can buy local train tickets using debit, credit cards

Good news for Indian Railways commuters on local trains! Now, with the use of debit cards and credit cards, passengers/commuters will be able to buy local train tickets from ATVM machines at stations. At present, the retrofitted point-of-sale (PoS) devices are being tested by the Centre for Railway Information Systems (CRIS), according to a Hindu report. According to General Manager of CRIS, Uday Bobhate, initially, the system will be introduced at CSMT in the coming months. So, in order to purchase tickets from ATVMs, the commuters will no longer need railway smart cards. He also said the project is being jointly implemented by CRIS and the State Bank of India as the banking partner. Therefore, commuters will have the option to purchase local train tickets using their debit cards and credit cards or smart cards.

As new ATVM machines have been introduced by Central Railway and as it will be procuring 318 new ones in the coming months, the CRIS GM said that they are planning to retrofit older ATVMs. He added, commuters will have the option to use debit cards and credit cards on the new ATVMs too. According to the report, Central Railway officials claimed that around 25 per cent of train tickets are sold through ATVMs. Additionally, QR code stickers across all railway stations on the suburban network have been introduced by the Central Railway. According to the report, the QR code stickers across railway stations have been phased in gradually, however, until last week, the QR code stickers were available only at selected railway stations.

Before booking the train ticket, commuters using the UTS mobile application can scan a QR code in order to detect the railway station. The report also stated that to respond to complaints regarding the application’s GPS system, officials at CRIS had come up with this solution, as sometimes it fails to detect the railway station. However, commuters will be able to use the mobile application only within 30 metres of a station. In some cases, the GPS fails to provide accurate location and gives an approximation. Therefore, the QR code stickers resolves the problem, the GM added.

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