irctc.co.in brought a revolution in India when it first launched the facility to book tickets for Indian Railways over the internet. Although the site has been updated a number of times to upgrade on functionality and looks, it still lacks the elegance & intuitiveness of a modern day web 2.0 site. Subsequently, many tech savvy users (including me) prefer to book their tickets at cleartrip.com or other more intuitive sites which offer a more ajaxy and new tech interface which is simple and cool to use.
Not anymore! Check out the beta version of irctc.co.in. The new beta version has a much cleaner and neat interface. It is based on AJAX which means you can book your tickets in fewer pages and fewer clicks. The home page (Plan my travel) looks like this:
Unlike the old interface, the train search results and availability are displayed in the same page. There is no longer a need to specify the class of travel while searching as all the available classes are displayed in the results. Clicking on the respective radio button for a class displays the fare and availability on the selected date plus five days in advance. You can also hover over the Fare Summary link to get the breakup of the fare.
Clicking on Book for a particular day will take you to the booking screen which is pretty much similar to the current one:
The remaining screens are also similar to the current ones, only neater and much more readable, thanks to the choice of minimalistic colors. Note that you can book tickets through the beta site. The beta label merely indicates that there might be some minor issues with the site which the team is fixing.
What is interesting to note is that both current and beta versions of irctc.co.in now support almost all the browsers:
irctc.co.in is one of the best and most successful internet initiative from the Government of India. It is good to see that the team is keeping itself abreast with the latest technologies and trends.
Liked this article? Like us on Facebook!