India shines having the fourth-largest railway network in the world. Almost every part of the country has been uniquely connected through rail and about 23 million people every day uses the rail system for moving from one place to another.
Although you too must have traveled by trains, did you ever notice the numbers painted on different bogeys?
As per the Indian Railways, there is a system of numbering which gives each train a 4-5 digit number.
In the display, the first 2 digits represent the year of production. So if a number on the coach displays, 98337, the train was built in 1998.
However, some special trains like Rajdhani do not follow this nomenclature or classification.
The remaining numbers specify that either the train is AC/Sleeper class/Two-Tier or Three-Tier and so on.
001-025: AC First Class
025-050: Composite 1st AC +AC-2T
050-100: AC 2T
101-150: AC 3T
151-200: AC Chair Car
201-400: Sleeper 2nd Class
401-600: General Second Class
601-700: 2L Sitting Jan Shatabdi Chair Car
701-800: Sitting Cum Luggage Rake
Some letters (if printed) specify the type of railways that the train belongs to. The WCR, EF, and NF mean that the train is manufactured by Central Railway, Eastern Railways, and North Railways respectively.
Here is the nomenclature which in detail defines the type of coach.
CN: 3-tier sleeper coach
CW:2-tier sleeper coach
CB:Pantry/kitchen car/buffet car
CT: Tourist car (first class) (includes washrooms/bathrooms, kitchen, and sitting and sleeping berths/compartments)
CTS: Tourist car (second class) (includes bathrooms, kitchen, and sitting and sleeping berths/compartments)
C: (except as above) With Coupe (two-seater)
Y: (not as a prefix) With Ladies’ compartment (usually 6-berth compartment with locking door)
You will also see the 5-digit train number printed on your train tickets. Only a few of people how to decode them. Here’s an example.
The first digit indicates the type of train you are traveling by.
0– stands for special trains (e.g., summer specials, holiday specials, etc.)
1– stands for all long-distance trains
2– stands also for long-distance trains; it is to be used when train numbers starting with 1 are exhausted in any series.
3– stands for Kolkata suburban trains.
4– stands for suburban trains in Chennai, New Delhi, Secunderabad, and other metropolitan areas.
5– stands for passenger trains with conventional coaches
6– stands for MEMU trains
7– stands for DMU (DEMU) and railcar services.
8– stands currently reserved
9– stands for Mumbai area suburban trains
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Second and other digits of the bogies depend on what the first digit is. As per the first digit, they will point to the zone and the region the train is traveling in. Therefore, the next time you travel by train, try to decode the digits and be the star of your group of buddies!
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