My travel these days is mostly between Chennai and
During the comparatively long (one and a half hours) ATR flight to
I had to shell out that much money because of a faux pas. I had asked for ticket by Trivandrum Mail. The departure time of this train from Chennai Central is 8.15 P.M. Just before starting for the railway station I had a look at the ticket and was mortified to find that it was for Trivandrum Express leaving at 4.15 P.M.! I had to book an air ticket online. The moral: always check the ticket as soon as you receive it.
Now, about the train fare. My return ticket was reserved on Tatkal system. In this procedure, after the allotted quota for regular booking is taken up, one can obtain a berth by paying a hefty fee. The more the seats apportioned for Tatkal, the more money the railways make. The total number of seats on the train remains the same.
There is some unfairness about Tatkal. It does not differentiate between senior citizens and others. Everybody pays the same. The very concept of special consideration for the elders is nullified.
Last month onward journey by 2 AC from Chennai to
Tatkal arrangement could be useful in situations where one has to travel urgently on short notice. But it should not be used as a profit making procedure. Only a minimum number of seats should be kept apart for Tatkal. Again, a just fare structure would be: regular charge minus senior citizen concession plus Tatkal fees.
I hope the Railways would look into this.