Indian Railways: IRCTC ePayLater scheme soars in popularity, 2.5 lakh users opted for it in just 3 months
Indian Railways Catering and Tourism Department (IRCTC) had launched 'book now, pay later' facility in 2017.
Indian Railways Catering and Tourism Department (IRCTC) had launched 'book now, pay later' facility in 2017. Since then, the service has been received well by the users. Arthashastra Fintech Ltd, which provides the ePayLater service, has claimed that around 2.5 lakh IRCTC users opted for the service in the last three months between January and March. Akshat Saxena, Co-Founder, ePayLater, told ZeeBiz.com that the service is gaining popularity with more users opting for it.
"It has emerged as a popular service. The pick up of the service has been on a rise. A lot of customers have booked tatkal tickets using the service, many used the service as they were short on cash, and youngsters have loved the service. The e-pay later allows the users around a couple of weeks breathing time and by the time their salary hits the account and then they can pay the dues," said Saxena.
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He added that this digital credit has eliminated the need of people to run for credit instruments like Credit cards.
The Arthashastra Fintech levies a transaction fee of 3.5%+taxes which is a little higher than what credit card users pay at the time of booking a ticket. If you pay using any domestic credit card at IRCTC, you will be charged 1.8%+taxes. However, there isn't any charge associated with debit cards. The ePayLater stood out for providing interest-free credit for a period of 14 days.
The ePayLater has also shared some interesting insights about the Indian Railways tickets booked between January and March this year. Take a look:
1. Booking for summer vacations started from Jan itself this year (6% of total bookings in January were for May-June)
2. As vacations draw near, the pace of bookings increases as more and more people begin planning for holiday travel (percentage of total monthly bookings done for summer vacations - Feb 8%, Mar 13%, Apr 14%)
3. A noteworthy trend was seen especially during vacation period - bookings to locations like Tirupati, Puri (religious centers) picks up, bringing them among the top 10 destinations. This trend is not seen during the rest of the year
4. Pickup in booking for towns like Gorakhpur, Chappra, Patna - which otherwise show lower traffic during the rest of year - is indicative of people traveling to their hometowns/visiting family
5. The number of travellers per ticket also shows a distinctive jump. For May-June bookings on an average, there are 4 passengers per ticket compared to 2-3 passengers round the year
6. Majority travellers are still choosing Sleeper class tickets to travel.
7. In May-Jun, the percentage of women travellers in trains hikes to 42%, 11% higher than the rest of the year - indicating this to be one of the prime seasons when women choose to travel by train
8. Bookings for women travellers also show a distinctive trend - in May-June, women book more higher-class tickets. This also means that women prefer traveling in higher classes.
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Founded in December 2015, ePayLater is recognized as a startup by the 'Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion' of the Government of India's Ministry of Commerce.