A seamless travel experience for rail commuters with a swipe of a finger is in the offing as Railways plans to revamp its mobile application and include “all passenger services” for its customers.
“We are preparing an integrated mobile application for railway passengers which will take care of all their needs.
“It will be an app that will take care of the entire journey — from booking a ticket to booking a taxi, pre- ordering a meal, requesting for porter services, lodging at a retiring room, ordering a bed roll, complaining about lack of cleanliness in a coach, accessing digital entertainment, reserving a hotel, booking an airline ticket in case of a waitlisted rail ticket, among other services,”said an official from the Non-Fare Directorate of the Railway Ministry.
Ernst and Young, which has drafted this proposal for the Railways, intends to enhance the application in three stages by the end of which it plans to provide access to medical facilities, connect a passenger to police in case of an emergency and even assist with parking at railway stations.
It is expected that this initiative, which is part of railways’ move to monetise its digital assets, will fetch up to Rs 500 crores annually.
The Railway Ministry hopes that in this manner it will be able to augment its “non-fare revenue”, which is less than 5 per cent of the total revenue earned by it. Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu in his budget speech earlier this year had envisaged raising this to at least 10-20 per cent by monetising soft assets.