Using IRCTC Retiring Rooms- Experience - eNidhi India Travel Blog

Using IRCTC Retiring Rooms- Experience

IRCTC maintains a few retiring rooms in various railway stations across the country. I stayed in one of them (Lokamanya Tilak Terminus, Mumbai) recently and I am sharing my experience and process in this post.

Having a confirmed ticket is a must to book IRCTC retiring rooms. You can’t book without a journey ticket. You can’t walk in and ask for a room. Staff will ask you to book online, which you can’t do if you don’t have a train ticket with PNR (general ticket won’t get you a PNR, should be a sleeper class or above ticket)

Once you enter PNR, only if there are retiring rooms available at the starting or destination station then you will be able to book.

IRCTC sells their retiring rooms in 2 slots- 8 AM to 8 PM and 8 PM to 8 AM. You can book for multiple slots- like 1 day will be 2 slots. This is convenient as most hotels offer room from say 1 PM or 2 PM today to 10 or 11 AM next day. If you need a room from 8 AM to 8 PM you will have to book for 2 days. Also if you need a room for just 8 PM to 8 AM, paying full day hotel room rent feels like a waste of money- so in these scenarios IRCTC retiring rooms are useful.

Update: timing, pricing etc may vary from city to city, retiring room to retiring room. After you book the ticket check if room rates and timing work for you.

Another advantage of retiring rooms is you can save some money by using waiting rooms. For example your train arrives at 7AM- you can spend 1 hour in the waiting room of the railway station and check in to your IRCTC retiring room from 8 AM, instead of having to pay for 2 slots.

Most waiting rooms have private rooms which cost around 1500 INR for a 12 hour slot or an AC dormitory that costs around 600-700 INR for a 12 hour slot. 

Thus IRCTC Retiring rooms are not cheap- For example QubeStay capsule hotel in Sakinaka costs around 850 INR for 2 PM to 12 noon stay with better comfort and breakfast included. You will get budget rooms for the whole day for under 1000 INR. But retiring rooms are useful if you don’t want to go too far from the railway station or don’t want any complications of dealing with private hotel owners and prefer something convenient and standardized.

Cheapest room I have found in Mumbai is Ghatkopar Guest house, just 300 INR per day per bed (Absolutely basic setup though)

What to expect in IRCTC Retiring rooms?

  • Very basic rooms- an OLD split AC was there- it was working. Room was spacious enough- there was some extra space which they had left unused and blocked- not sure why.
  • I had a view of the railway station entrance, which was nice.
  • Bathroom was basic, but I did get some hot water.

AC Dormitory: Basic bunk beds stuffed close to each other- half the price but less space, comfort and privacy. If needed for just a few hours this might be worth. If you are a family or group, rooms are better.

Food: You will have to rely on canteens and shops and restaurants within the railway station limits or go into the city for food. Retiring rooms do not have any room service or cafeteria.

October 2023 update: Stayed again at IRCTC Retiring room at Bandra Terminus- I wanted to book one at Lokamanya Tilak Terminus for half day but couldn't do it- had to book one at Bandra, for a full day starting previous night. Had to pay INR 1400 for non ac room. Had to go to counter in ground floor and get the key. Room was just ok. The booking confirmation doesn't show address or name, we need to remember ourselves and reach- this part can be bit tricky.


IRCTC’s Retiring Rooms are a good consideration for short term stay under following conditions

  • You have a connecting train in next few hours and don’t want to go into city, stay and rush back in time for next train
  • You need a place to stay from morning to evening and don’t want to pay for 2 days at hotels that need check out at 10 or 11 AM
  • Your work is close to railway station and it makes more sense to stay at the station than take a hotel somewhere else in city
  • Waiting rooms are crowded or not comfortable- you would rather pay 600 INR and sleep well for few hours in the dormitory
  • Soon after arrival you find it convenient to take a dorm bed, rest for a while,have a shower, get fresh and proceed to work.

Related: Vistadome experience * Longest railway platform in Hubballi *


  1. Is it like 1 person per room or double triple occupancies are also there?

  2. Recently I took a retiring room at kottayam railway station last Monday morning for 4 hours. We got freshened up n rested. The cost was nominal, Room n staff were good


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