THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Southern Railway (SR) divisional office here is planning to set up automatic ticket vending machines at the Thiruvananthapuram Central railway station soon. The move is expected to cut the long queues in front of ticket counters at the station.
The machines, which employ technology similar to ATMs, will help passengers book tickets using prepaid 'smart cards'. Print outs of the tickets can also be taken on the spot.
Tickets can be procured for daily commutes within the state. Passengers will also be able to book tickets two to three days prior to their journey.
"It was decided to introduce the vending machines after we noticed lengthy queues at the ticket counters here, especially during morning and evening peak hours. The easy-to-use touch screen interface will help passengers choose the destination, class and number of seats. The smart card can be recharged just like pre-paid mobile cards," said a senior commercial department official.
According to the official, after Thiruvananthapuram Central, the facility would be introduced at Ernakulam and Thrissur railway stations.
"In the initial stage, we will post an official with a smart card near the machine to help the passengers. Once the public familiarizes with the system, the smart cards will be made available for all. Southern Railway is planning to launch the facility within two months, which at the moment is only employed at its Chennai suburban system," the official said.
He added that if found successful, the facility would be made available at all stations in the state.
(George Adimathra, TNN | Aug 7, 2012, 02.08AM IST. Times of India dt 7-8-2012)