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Check PNR Status

Indian Railway PNR Status

The Indian Railways passenger name record, also known as, Passenger Name Record(PNR) is a number that consists of personal information of a passenger. It also contains the itinerary for the passenger, or a group of passengers travelling together.

The PNR status refers to the booking status of the train ticket. It states whether the ticket has been confirmed, on waiting list (WL) or is under reservation against cancellation (RAC). The online PNR status also provides the coach and seat number, and the fare paid by the passenger apart from the basic information about arrival and departure time of trains.

The PNR number of a ticket is generally printed on the top left corner of the ticket. If it's an e-ticket, the PNR number is, however, printed in a separate cell. It is against this reference number that the passenger's personal details like name, age and gender get saved in the database.

How is a PNR Number Generated?

The PNR number consists of 10 digits, where the first 3 digits specify the PRS (Passenger Reservation System) from which the ticket is booked. The first digit of the PNR number specify that the zone of the train (starting station of the train) of the ticket. The following numbers belong to the below mentioned zones respectively.

1 – Issued from the SCR zone (Secundarabad PRS)

2, 3 – Issued from NR, NCR, NWR, or NER zone (New Delhi PRS)

4, 5 – Issued from SR, SWR, or SCR zone (Chennai PRS)

6, 7 – Issued from NFR, ECR, ER, EcoR, SER or SECR zone (Kolkata PRS)

8, 9 – Issued from CR, WCR, or WR zone (Mumbai PRS)

The last 7 digits are randomly generated digits, only to make the PNR number unique.

How to Check IRCTC PNR Status

The PNR status of your train ticket can be checked on Paytm in no time! For Indian Railways PNR status check, all you need to do is enter your PNR number and click the button indicated. A new window will appear showing your current PNR status live. There is a popular confusion among users if PNR status can be checked entering the passenger's name or not. However, since the personal details of each passenger are kept confidential, you may not check the PNR status with name on Paytm.

Ways To Know Your PNR Status

You can understand your online PNR status and train info from multiple sources that include:

  • Current reservation check using SMS/phone: SMS PNR and send to 139 or call 139.
  • PNR status on mobile
  • Railway counters at railway stations
  • Final reservation charts
  • Other websites that offer you the current PNR status

How PNR Works?

The Centre of Railway Information Systems or CRIS runs a database where all information about passengers are fed and stored. The system creates a 10 digit PNR status number every time a person books a train ticket on any platform.

Importance of PNR Status

The PNR current status displayed online is used to know whether the booked ticket is CNF, RAC, WL, GNWL, PQWL, RLWL or TQWL.

Here's what each of the above abbreviation stands for:

  • CNF - Confirmed
  • Confirmed + RAC
  • RAC - Reservation Against Cancellation
  • RAC + WL
  • WL - Waiting List
  • GNWL - General Waiting List
  • PQWL - Pooled Quota Waiting List
  • RLWL - Remote Location Waiting List
  • TQWL - Tatkal Waiting List

Available, Waiting List and RAC Tickets

While checking the ticket availability, you may come across terms like RAC and WL. This could be confusing if you're not familiar with booking train tickets. The 'Available' seats are the ones that get immediately confirmed the moment you book them. The next category RAC (Reservation Against Cancellation) seats are the ones that get confirmed against the cancellation of previously booked tickets. WL (Waiting List) seats are the ones that get confirmed only after the RAC seats are confirmed.

Types of Waiting List Tickets

The types of Waiting List tickets include:

  • GNWL (General Waiting List): These tickets are issued when the journey begins from the originating station or a station close to the originating station. This is the most common type of waitlisted tickets, and have the highest chances of getting confirmed.
  • Importance – Highest priority
  • RLWL (Remote Location Waiting List): This category of Waiting List is also known as RLGN (Remote Location General Waiting List). These waitlisted tickets are issued for stations that fall between the originating and the terminating stations as these are usually the most important stations that fall on the respective routes. The confirmation of these tickets depends on the cancellation of the already confirmed tickets. However, the chances of these tickets getting confirmed is less.
  • Importance – Moderate priority
  • PQWL (Pooled Quota Waiting List): Your waiting list ticket may fall under this category if you are boarding from the originating station and departing from an intermediate station, if you are boarding from an intermediate station and departing at the terminating station, or if you are boarding and departing from intermediate stations on the route. However, only very few tickets are issued under PQWL as the Indian Railways gives priority to long distance passengers. The chances of these tickets being confirmed is also less.
  • Importance – Moderate priority
  • RSWL (Roadside Station Waiting List): RSWL is a rare quota where the ticket is booked from the originating station to the roadside station and the distance restrictions may not be applied. The chances of these tickets being confirmed is less.
  • Importance – Low priority
  • RQWL (Request Waiting List): This is yet another rare quota of waiting list that has tickets that cover the intermediate stations that are not covered by the rest of the waiting list categories. RQWL tickets also have a less chance in getting confirmed.
  • Importance – Low priority
  • CKWL (Tatkal Waiting List): If tatkal tickets are waitlisted, they belong to the waiting list CKWL. If the waitlisted tatkal ticket goes up, it directly gets confirmed, as there is no RAC allotted for tatkal. However, the chances of these tickets getting confirmed is still very low.
  • Importance – Low priority

What is an RAC ticket?

RAC (Reservation Against Cancellation) tickets are those where your seats are confirmed, but the berth remains waitlisted. For instance, if you hold an RAC ticket at the time of the journey, you would be allotted a seat which is generally shared by one or more RAC ticket holders, but your berth remains waitlisted. If there are any berths available, it would be allocated to you depending on the RAC position of your ticket.

One of the major differences between a fully WL (waitlisted) ticket and an RAC ticket is that you are allowed to board the train and occupy the alloted seat if you hold an RAC ticket after the chart is prepared, whereas this is not legally permitted if you hold a WL ticket, unless the TTE permits you to board the train.

Validity of PNR Number

Your PNR number turns invalid after the completion of the journey.

How often Should You Check For PNR Status Updates

If you are allotted a waitlisted train ticket, the status of the ticket keeps changing based on the cancellations on the confirmed tickets. Your ticket could move to a lower waiting list number or can also get confirmed. Since the change in the PNR status is recorded realtime, it is better to have a check on the status quite often.


Q. Will my PNR status be confirmed?

Ans: You can check your PNR status online or at the ticket counters of railway stations. If the status shows CNF, the ticket is confirmed.

Q. Is there any chance of ticket confirmation after chart preparation?

Ans: Waitlisted tickets get confirmed only before the chart preparation. If your tickets remain waitlisted after the chart preparation, the booked tickets will not get confirmed. However, if there are vacant seats, you can talk to the TC and check if you can be allotted a seat.

Q. Can we travel with only the PNR number?

Ans: Yes, passengers are allowed to travel without tickets, if the PNR status is confirmed. If you don’t have the ticket with you, approach the TC and give the details of your ticket along with your ID proof for verification.

Q. Can we check PNR after the journey?

Ans: If you check the PNR status after the journey, the result may show “Flushed PNR/PNR not generated”. Later, you may also find the PNR number allotted to another passenger.

Q. Can I travel with only PNR number?

Ans: Yes, you can travel with the PNR number and the seat number reserved against it. You can approach the TC and show your ID proof and get your reservation verified.

Q. What do you mean by CNF in PNR status?

Ans: CNF stands for “Confirmed”. The PNR status of the train ticket that shows CNF means that the seats are confirmed.

Q. Which is better, RAC or WL?

Ans: RAC means “Reservation Against Cancellation” and WL stands for “Waiting List”. RAC means that you will be given a seat which has to be shared with another passenger. An RAC ticket has more chances of getting confirmed.

Q. Which waiting list tickets gets cleared first?

Ans: When it comes to clearing waiting list tickets, the general waitlisted tickets (GNWL) has preference over tatkal waiting list tickets (TQWL).

Q. Can the passengers travel with partially confirmed e-tickets?

Ans: Yes, all the passengers can travel even if only one of the passengers gets the ticket confirmed (CNF or RAC). The others whose tickets are not confirmed will have to adjust themselves with the confirmed berth.

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