How to book e-catering service in trains?


Do you intend to book e-catering services offered by the IRCTC? How to book e-catering services through pre-paid online payment option mode or on cash on delivery mode? Read this article to know answers of these and such other related questions.

Introduction

Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC), a subsidiary of the Indian Railways provides services related to the catering, tourism and online ticketing operations of the Indian railways. Recently, IRCTC has launched e-catering service for passengers travelling in trains without pantry cars through which meals can be booked to be delivered at the selected station by the selected service provider/vendor. A number of reputed food chains like McDonald's, KFC, Switz Foods, Only Alibaba, Dominos, Haldiram, Bikanerwala, Nirualas, Sagar Ratna and Pizza Hut etc. have entered into a tie-up with the IRCTC for offering options which were unheard of in the past.

Steps to book through website

  • Visit the website - http://www.ecatering.irctc.co.in/
  • Sign in using IRCTC login
  • Enter the PNR of the ticket.
  • A list of stations will appear in the drop down menu.
  • Select the station at which meal is required to be booked/serviced.
  • A list of vendors and menu alongwith price list will be displayed.
  • Select the vendor and meal from the given menu. Price will also be displayed.
  • On confirmation, option for e-payment will be displayed.
  • On successful payment transaction, an SMS as well as an email is sent to the passenger as well as to the service provider/vendor. The SMS and email will have the details of the order.
  • The SMS sent to the passenger will have an OTP (One Time Password).
  • At the time of delivery of meal, the service provider/vendor will use the OTP for verification of passenger.
  • In addition to the SMS and email sent at the time of booking of the meal, the SMS and email will be sent again to the passenger 2 hours before the scheduled delivery of meals at the station.
  • An email is also sent to the passenger 24 hours before the scheduled delivery time at the station.

Steps to book through phone

  • Waitlisted as well as confirmed ticket holding passengers can book e-catering services by calling 1323.
  • The the call center executive will call to the passenger for taking orde.
  • Subsequently, the passenger will be informed of confirmed booking through SMS and email which will contain the details of the order.
  • The SMS sent to the passenger will have an OTP (One Time Password) which will be used by the service provider/vendor for verification of passenger.
  • In addition to the SMS and email sent at the time of booking of the meal, the SMS and email will be sent again to the passenger 2 hours before the scheduled delivery of meals at the station.
  • An email is also sent to the passenger 24 hours before the scheduled delivery time at the station.

Steps to book through SMS

  • Waitlisted as well as confirmed ticket holding passengers can book e-catering services by sending SMS - MEAL to 139.
  • The the call center executive will call to the passenger for taking order on receipt of SMS.
  • Subsequently, the passenger will be informed of confirmed booking through SMS and email which will contain the details of the order.
  • The SMS sent to the passenger will have an OTP (One Time Password) which will be used by the service provider/vendor for verification of passenger.
  • In addition to the SMS and email sent at the time of booking of the meal, the SMS and email will be sent again to the passenger 2 hours before the scheduled delivery of meals at the station.
  • An email is also sent to the passenger 24 hours before the scheduled delivery time at the station.

Important points

  1. Presently the service is provided at 171 railway stations in the initial phase of e-catering project of IRCTC. A list of such stations is provided on the website of e-catering. More stations are likely to be added in future.
  2. The passengers can search stations by using 'search' feature provided on the website.
  3. The list of trains on which e-catering service is available can also be searched by using 'search' feature provided on the website.
  4. The minimum order value is Rs. 60 per passenger per unit (vendor) per station/location.
  5. Online payment is required to be made while booking meals through the website and in cases of booking through phone or SMS, a cash payment can be made to the delivery staff at the time of receiving pre-booked meals.
  6. Presently, only the passengers having valid confirmed reservation ticket can book the meal though e-catering service.
  7. Meals can be booked through the website of the IRCTC e-catering or through phone.
  8. Presenntly, the e-catering service is available in only limited number of trains running without a pantry car.
  9. A list of such trains is displayed on the website.
  10. The services are available from 0600 hours to 2200 hours only.
  11. Waitlisted passengers can also book services through phone and SMS modes.
  12. Food is delivered even if the trains are running late but reaches the delivery station within the meal delivery time slot.
  13. In the case the delayed trains reach the meal delivery station beyond the service delivery time i.e. 0600 hours to 2200 hours , then the meal is not guaranteed.
  14. In such cases, in case, food is not delivered, the full refund will be made to the passenger after deducting bank charges.
  15. In the case, the train is running late, then the passengers have the option to cancel the booking subject to the terms and conditions of booking.
  16. The terms & conditions are available on the website of e-catering.
  17. Confirmed meal order can be cancelled 2 hours before the scheduled delivery. The confirmed orders can be cancelled within less than 2 hours also but in such cases, no refund will be made to the passengers.

Cash back offer of IRCTC

  • IRCTC has recently announced a scheme which provides 50% cash back on pre-paid orders having a minimum value of Rs. 300.
  • The scheme is available only on meals book in pre-paid mode through the website of TRCTC website or through 'Food on Track' mobile application .
  • The scheme is not applicable in case of meals booked through the phone numbers of vendors or apps or other websites.
  • The cash back will be processed after the delivery date and will be credited to the same account through which the meal was booked.
  • The customers will be informed after the cash back is processed by IRCTC.

Meal options

Unlike the limited options which were available to the train passengers in the past, nowadays many reputed food chains like McDonald's, KFC, Switz Foods, Only Alibaba, Dominos, Haldiram, Bikanerwala, Nirualas, Sagar Ratna, and Pizza Hut etc. have entered into a tie-up with the IRCTC to serve passengers a variety of food items at the designated railway stations to the passengers of listed trains. Some of the examples of available options are as follows -
  1. Chicken Biryani with Raita - Rs. 60 to Rs. 190
  2. Rajma Chawal - Rs. 64.15
  3. Chicken Curry Chawal - Rs. 98.54
  4. Paneer ki Sabzi with Ulte Tawe ke Paranthe - Rs. 98.54
  5. Amritsari Kulcha Aloo With Chhole - Rs. 117.72
  6. Samosa with Chole - Rs. 64.15
  7. Mini Thali Veg - Rs. 117.72
  8. Mini Thali Non-Veg - Rs. 128.30
  9. Thali Veg - Rs. 197.09
  10. Thali Non-Veg - Rs. 206.34

Contact details

The following the contact details made available on the website of the e-catering of IRCTC -
Phone Number: 1323
Email ID: customercare.ecatering@irctc.com

Conclusion

The persons who wish to avail e-catering services made available by the IRCTC may visit the website - http://www.ecatering.irctc.co.in/ and carefully go through the station list, menu, FAQ and the terms and conditions available on the same. It may be noted that the e-catering services are presently available only at the designated railway stations and on trains without a pantry car. The passengers may opt for availing the services only after satisfying themselves with the various aspects of the scheme at their own discretion. Also, the latest phone numbers given on the website for booking e-catering services may be used.


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