Like airlines, the Indian Railways will now charge a penalty of up to six-times the stipulated fee for carrying extra luggage in trains without booking them in advance.
Luggage which has to be carried with the owner in the same train should be presented at the booking station at least 30 minutes before the scheduled departure of the train. The passengers booking their accommodation in advance are permitted to book their luggage at the same time.
The three-decades-old baggage allowance rules allow passengers to book and carry excess luggage in the luggage van, up to the maximum limit, on the payment of a fee equivalent to one-and-a-half times the luggage rate. A sleeper class and a second class passenger can carry luggage weighing 40 kg and 35 kg respectively without paying any extra money and a maximum of 80 kg and 70 kg respectively by paying for the excess luggage at the parcel office. The excess luggage would have to be put in the luggage van.
Bulky surcharge will be levied at double the normal rate on packages weighing above 100 kgs or exceeding 1m*1m*0.7 (length, breadth, height) in outside measurement. Packages exceeding any one of the dimensions specified will be treated as bulky even though the actual weight is less than 100 kgs on volu-metric basis.
Besides the weight, the luggage should adhere to the prescribed measurements of 100cm * 60cm * 25cm (length, breadth, height) to be carried in the compartments. In case, the measurements exceed any of the dimensions, the luggage would be booked and then carried in the luggage van.
“If a passenger is found travelling with un-booked luggage weighing more than the free allowance, the excess weight will be charged six times the luggage rate. The move is to ensure passenger convenience and address the issue of cramped compartments,” PTI quoted Ved Prakash, Director, Information and Publicity, Railway Board, said.
Unlike at the Airport, where the luggage of each passenger is weighed, the Indian Railways will carry out random checks.
Also, the railways will enforce the rules through a special drive (June 1-6) across all its zones.
To understand it better
For example, if a passenger is travelling 500 km with luggage weighing 80 kg in the sleeper class, he can book his excess baggage of 40 kg for Rs 109 in the luggage van.
However, if he fails to book in advance and is caught with the excess luggage, he will end up paying a penalty of Rs 654 (Rs 109*6).
Similarly, an AC first class passenger can carry 70 kg of luggage for free and a maximum of 150 kg, after paying a fee for the excess 80 kg.
An AC two-tier passenger can carry 50 kg of luggage for free and a maximum of 100 kg by paying a fee for the excess 50 kg.