This blog has little bit of everything...

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Technical Interview Preparation



These days a lot of folks are curious about interview/ hiring process of top technology companies like Google, Facebook and Amazon etc. Sometimes understanding the hiring process in advance helps a lot but there are couple of very simple fundamentals that all aspirants should understand: (A) Getting selected in an interview shows that you are capable of passing but at the same time it doesn't determine and show you your self worth. (B) For every skill there are really very few folks who are at the top, rest everyone else has someone for other who is more capable than them. This is a fact that the interviewing companies are also aware of and they know what to expect from most of the candidates. So all you need to do is believe in yourself and don't ever think that you are inferior to someone because negative thinking will lead to self destruction. 

How to prepare for a technical interview?

When you prepare for a technical job interview, what matters most is your real life experience and confidence. How much experience do you have and how confident are you to answer the queries with clarity of thought is what differentiates you from the others.

- Be Organized

Plan and prepare in an organized way. Do a lot of white boarding and problem solving. Your focus should be on demonstrating that you can (A) Understand a problem (b) Divide the problem into logical units (c) Attach or arrive at the solution in a logical way.


- First, Understand the Concepts and Fundamentals

Make sure you understand the basics and fundamentals of Computer Applications, S/W Engineering Processes and Programming. Expect few theoretical questions which will test your very basic knowledge of What is a data structure? How is are various data structures, like linked lists used? What are the various types of Network protocols? What is multi-threading? Concepts like Polymorphism, functional overloading etc.

- Second, Be Prepared To Write Algorithms

Most technical interviews test your ability to code or write programs/ algorithms. Make sure that you have clarity of thought and understand the logic. Syntax errors don't matter much.
Very basic programs such as Swapping numbers, Fibonacci series, Sorting. Operations with Data Structures etc should be known.

- Third, Be Prepared with Front-end Concepts and Programming

Based on your skills, you may be asked advanced questions on Microsoft or Java or any other front end technology. Make sure you have done a lot of study using experience of other folks which is available online.

- Fourth, Be Prepared With Back-end Concepts and Programming

Concepts of Database should be crystal clear. Even if you are a front-end developer you should know the basics of Database. You should be able to write Sql statements and simple PL/ Sql blocks.
If you are appearing for a Back-end Programmer job then expect drill down questions on triggers, procedures, functions, packages, performance tuning.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Oracle 11i to Oracle R12 Upgrade

If you are planning to Upgrade your Oracle 11i system to Oracle R12, here are few key considerations that should be uncovered in the assessment phase:

1 - Hardware : What is the current hardware configuration? Will the current hardware support Oracle R12? If not, what is the hardware requirement for Oracle R12?

2 - Infrastructure : Other than the hardware you need to make sure you have the right Operating System, Memory and other servers configurations to host the Oracle R12 system.

3 - Database : Before you move to the Oracle Apps upgrade from 11i to R12, you need to make sure you understand whether your Database requires upgrade. For example, moving from Oracle 10g to Oracle 11gm, moving from Non RAC to RAC model and moving from Non OATM to OATM etc

4 - Oracle Apps : When you upgrade from Oracle 11i to Oracle R12 make sure you ascertain the exact R12 version on which you want to move, for example, Oracle R12.1.3 or Oracle R12.2.

5 - Business Process : Understand what are the demands of your business process, whether you want to move your existing customization from Oracle 11i to Oracle R12 as is or whether you want to analyze whether any R12 new features will eliminate your existing customizations.

6 - Demo for Business Community : Movement from Oracle 11i to Oracle R12 will be big change for your business community so you need to make sure that they understand the changes in the User Interface as well as the changes in the functionality. A demonstration of Oracle R12 new features will come in handy to get business approval for the upgrade.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Advantages of being a PMP

Important Update: PMP exam is changing in 2016

Advantages of being a PMP


- You have a certificate which is recognized across industries and domains. It provides you credibility.

- You learn the fundamentals of Project Management.

- You learn how to apply the skill of Project Management in the real world.

- You will always get the intangible benefit when compared to a peer who is not PMP.

- You stand out while applying in all those job openings which mention that they prefer PMP certified candidates.

- You learn what is the difference between a Project and an ongoing Operation. It helps you become a better project manager.

- You learn and understand all the project management jargon in the true sense: Risk Management, Scope Management, Schedule Management, Cost Management, Resource Management, Critical Path etc.

- You may also get a better salary and pay hike if you negotiate well.

- You grow as a Project Manager and you understand the difference between "what is the recommended action" in any given situation versus "what you would have done" if you had not gone through the PMP grill.


Thursday, June 19, 2014

Important budgeting aspects for planning an international trip

Important budgeting aspects for planning an international trip:


1. Draw the timelines. Start Date and End Date

2. Plan the places that you want to see. This includes the countries, cities and the various places within the cities that you want to visit.

3. Ticketing and Visa Expenses: Depending on Flights, Train, Buses, Local transport. Search for online deals.

4. Hotel Expenses: Based on the cities and places that you want to visit, mark budget for your hotel accommodation. Search for online deals.

5. Food expenses: Make sure you take into account all aspects of Food expenses. Breakfast, Lunch, Snacks, Dinner everything should be accounted for.

6. Medical Expenses: Whether at home or away, you need to make sure that you keep aside certain amount for medical expenses. This includes any pre-existing and any emergency expenses.

7. Travel Insurance: Based on the countries that you want to travel, you need to make sure that you have your travel insurance covered.

8. Foreign exchange: You need to make sure you have foreign currency available for all the countries that you want to visit.

9. Phone Cards : Make sure you are connected to the world while you travel. Get calling cards for the countries that you are going to visit.

10. Last but not the least, make sure you have all the basic things with you for making your travel safe. Here is the list for safe traveler's checklist:
http://thetomorrowbeckons.blogspot.com/2014/06/what-is-safe-traveler-checklist.html

#WhenFacebookWasDown




You saved around 30 minutes of your day. You had the opportunity to use those 30 minutes in some productive activity.

You didn't have to bother about the pings of those with whom you really don't want to chat.

You didn't read the posts which really didn't matter.

You realized that  it really didn't matter coz you have started to use Whatsapp for sharing the jokes and videos with your friends, and there is no impact to your online life if Facebook goes offline forever.

You realized that you made a mistake by choosing facebook login as the login of other social media websites.

You realized that calling someone from your phone is what matters in the time of need. Facebook is just a luxury.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

21 Important Travel Tips for First Time International/ USA Travelers




Important things to know if you are traveling to the US for the first time


- Getting along with People

USA is a huge country and it hosts folks from various origins/ countries. There can be a huge difference in the lifestyle within USA based on the city/ region in which you are going to stay. For example, east and west host people from different origins. If you are from asian origin you can be rest assured that you will find lot of asians in USA which will make you feel at home. However, make sure you mix with all the people irrespective of their origin. Make friends. Socialize.

- Weather Conditions/ Climate


Check online for the weather conditions of the area where you are going to land and stay. United States is a huge country and the weather conditions can be extremely cold or extremely hot. Make sure you carry necessary clothes with you.

- Understand the locality

Before you fly to USA make sure you have done enough online research on the locality in which you are going to stay or work. Google for near by grocery shops, markets. Use Google maps to understand the distance and available routes.

- Understand the Transport System

Find out about the local transport system. Check whether public transit system by bus or train is available or not. Understand that in USA most people use their personal Cars for commuting from one place to another and there are few places in USA where the public transport system is not as good as it is in India. So you need to be completely prepared and aware of the local transport system before you arrive in USA. For example, make sure you know how to reach from Airport to Hotel and from Hotel to Grocery shop etc.

- Make sure you get your international driving permit

Before you arrive in USA make sure you get your international driving permit from your home country.

For leading a smooth life, driving a car is a must in USA. Life can be a nightmare if you don't know driving. With the help of IDP you can rent a car and then prepare to get driving license for United States.

- Timezone

One more important factor is the timezone. Understand that USA has different timezones like Pacific, Central and Eastern. Unlike India, different cities have different timings and the difference between east and west coast is around 3 hours.


Travel Tips For First Timers



  • International flights recommend that you check in at least 4 hours ahead of the flight, so it is advisable to keep a one hour buffer and arrive at the airport at least 5 hours ahead of your flight time, specifically if this is your first international journey. Don't forget to read and understand your travel ticket carefully. Don't make basic mistakes like arriving for a flight at 1.30 in the night when actually the flight is at 1.30 in the noon.

  • Carry your destination address and a pen. You will need it at the time of check in.

  • Your passport, tickets, destination/ hotel address, insurance are very important documents. Make sure they are kept safe throughout the journey.

  • Understand the baggage rules, maximum number of bags allowed, the weight and size restrictions. These vary from country to country and may also be different for different airlines. It is best to check on the website of the airline on which you have booked your ticket.

  • At the time of check-in you will get boarding pass(es) for your flight/ connecting flights. Read them carefully and keep them secure.

  • In the flight, drink enough water. Take good rest/ sleep. This will help you tackle the jet lag later.

  • If you have connecting flights, make sure you know the flight number of the next flight and by looking at the displays at the airport you can find out the gate number from which the connecting flight will depart.

  • Before your flight lands you will be given a arrival form/ customs form. Fill that form carefully with all the right information from your passport, ticket and visa. It will also ask you about the value of articles that you are carrying/ amount of cash that you need to declare. If you don't get this form on the flight then you will get it at the airport.

  • When you land, make sure you carry all your belongings with you. Don't forget anything on the flight, specifically things like mobile/ mobile charger.

  • At arrival you will face a short interview, where the customs officer will verify your visa and the purpose of your visit. They may also take your picture and fingerprints. Don't worry this is just a basic check.

  • Next, collect your check in bags from the baggage area. Proceed to exit. You may or may not need to go through the baggage screening process. In case you are asked to go through the screening make sure you provide all the details accurately. DO NOT Lie.

  • That's it. You have finally arrived. Meet your loved ones waiting for you outside the gate or follow the signs of taxi/ ground transportation/ shared ride as required.

If you read this post, you will love to read the following interesting posts:

How Much Money Do Indians Save In USA? 
How To Go Onsite/ USA from IT Services Company?

4 Important Actions for Smooth Transition from IT Development Team to IT Production Support Team

- Early engagement with the development teamMake sure that the IT Production support team is engaged with the IT Development team during the development phase of the Project. Ideally during the UAT/ BAT phase the support team should be on board and should look over the shoulder of the development team to understand what issues are uncovered and addressed during the testing phase.

- Functional and Technical DocumentationMake sure that the IT Production Support team has access to all the functional and technical documentation created by the IT Development team. All documentation should be reviewed before the Knowledge Transition is kicked off so that relevant questions can be asked during the KT sessions.

- Knowledge Transition Sessions - Share the schedule/ plan in advanceKT sessions should be conducted in a global friendly time. Since global teams are based in different geographical locations we need to make sure that all key stakeholders participate in these knowledge transition sessions. Hence the schedule and plan for the KT sessions should be published well in advanced so that all key stakeholders can be made available.

- Define clear Exit Criteria and adhere to itDefine clear Exit Criteria. That is, how many Severity 1, Severity 2 issues can remain open during the transition phase. Transition from IT Development team to IT Production support team should be considered as completed only when the defined exit criteria is met completely.  Generally, it is defined but not followed.
Make sure that formal sign off is obtained.

27 Hollywood Movies With Unpredictable Ending, You cannot afford to miss


27 Movies with unpredictable ending...




The Sixth Sense


Shutter Island


The Prestige


Inception


Memento


The Usual Suspects


Mulholland Drive


The Man from Earth


The Illusionist



Shawshank  Redemption


Psycho


Black Swan


The Departed


Se7en


Fight Club


Reservoir Dogs


The Devil's Advocate

Basic

Identity

The Others

Mystic River

EXAM

Dead Silence

Now You See Me

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Safe Checklist For Travelers


Here is a very important checklist for safe travel:
  • Whenever you book a hotel online: Don't assume that the confirmation number or booking reference number provided by the website is enough. Before you start your travel, always call up the hotel to make sure that your reservation/ booking is confirmed.
  • If you are planning a trip to visit multiple cities then try and make sure that you buy a end to end travel package by a single travel agent. Avoid engaging multiple travel agents for specific portions of the trip or buying a partial plan and then planning to manage certain things on your own.
  • Looking for genuine deals is fine but don't ignore other aspects of the travel. Always read the reviews and experiences of other travelers or users on the website.
  • When the website says Day1: Travel to place A and Day2: Travel to place B then there is no guarantee that it will happen in that order. The travel agent may change the plan to Day1: Travel to place B and Day2: Travel to place A. Be careful and ask for details.
  • Carry a map of the pickup and drop off points. This is important when you are traveling to a city or a place that you have not visited earlier. You should exactly know where you are going to be dropped or picked up from, it is helpful if you print the walking or driving directions from google maps.
  • You should also have the local transport details handy, lets assume you are visiting New York then you should have the phone numbers of some of the taxi services or rent a car service handy. It really helps a lot when you are stuck and don't know where to go.



Important Checklist for Travelers

Documentation

- Passport
- Govt. ID
- Photographs(passport size)
- Important phone numbers noted on a piece of paper. Don't rely on your cell phone
- Try to memorize the important phone numbers. Neither trust your cell phone nor the piece of paper
- Insurance
- Official Papers, like, visa papers, business letters
- Credit Card
- Cash
- Foreign Exchange
- Tickets
- Cell Phone network roaming plan, data plan
- Hotel Booking/ Confirmation number at destination
- Car/ Taxi booking at Source and Destination

Personal Belongings

- Pair of clothes to go out and to wear at home
- Medical Kit
- Personal Kit
- Cell Phone
- Cell Phone Charger
- Laptop
- Tablet
- Camera
- Headphones
- Laptop Bag
- Tiffin
- Keys
- Power adapter for destination country
- GPS
- Network Cable

Spain Is Down But Not Out, It Will Rise Again!


A lot has already been said about last night's game. What a match for #Holland.
Amazing #Victory for them. Congratulations for a superb all round performance and victory.
Way to go...

Many folks are already writing off the defending champions just after one defeat. Well, agreed that it was a crushing defeat in the very first game but that doesn't mean that the world is over. What most of the folks don't realize is that this defeat might just be the wake up call for the Spanish Champions just about at the right moment.

#Spain has the talent, experience, courage and grit to rise from such defeat. They will Rise and Rise again, and once they do, they will be unstoppable. Champions teams are those who learn from their defeats and mistakes, who understand and learn from what went wrong and execute with corrective actions that need to be in place going forward.

I am sure Spain will analyze their defensive skills, attack plan and put an action plan in place to bounce back with a fighting spirit if they face this situation again.

A true Spanish Fan will stand with their team in these testing times. Millions and millions of fans all over the world will continue to support this champion team with the same enthusiasm and excitement in the coming games. It is just a matter of time and this defeat will be forgotten and be a thing of the past. All the best for upcoming game. Spain, You are down, but not Out. Show the world that you will Rise Again!

Friday, June 13, 2014

Indian Football at #FIFA #Worldcup: How to take the big leap from #FIFA2014 to #FIFA2026?

Yes, #India is a #Cricket crazy nation with #Hockey as its National Game. In Hockey, we used to rule the past world for around 28 years, but today are struggling to even get a Hockey WorldCup semifinal berth. We are getting thrashed. But no one cares. If this is the state of our National Game then one can easily imagine the state of a game like football in India. We are nowhere, we got beaten up in the Asian qualifier round 2 by #UAE. And if there is no corrective action taken this would continue to be the status for next decades and decades to come. So is there anything that we as a Nation could do to take the BIG leap from #FIFA2014 to #FIFA2026? Let us think through it:

Government should take the initiative

There is so much frenzy about #Cricket and #IPL that every other game like Hockey, Football have taken a back seat. So there is a need for the Government of India to make and execute some serious plans for the organized development of these sports. Twelve years is a good enough time to make it happen. Target FIFA2026. Identify talent, build and provide international facilities. We do have a sports ministry to make it happen. Don't we?

Identify Young Talent

There are many talent hunt shows for identifying young singers and dancers on Television. There is a need to create similar talent hunt shows for young Sportsmen.

Corporates should come forward

Wealthy and rich sports groups #BCCI and corporates like #Tata, #Birla and #Ambani should contribute towards the organized growth for development of these sports in India. Isn't this a part of corporate social responsibility?

We the people

We the people should encourage our kids to play and participate in non cricketing sports. Constant nurturing from childhood would help the kids get trained well.

Nurture talent to participate in top foreign clubs

Whenever there is a super talent identified at a national level then there is a need to give international exposure to such sportsmen. There needs to be a organized channel to make it happen.

International Coaching and Training

Indian Hockey and Football players need top international coaches. Bring them onboard.
Indian Cricket has already produced many international superstars who can coach the Indian cricket team. We do not need international coach for Indian Cricket we need it for non cricketing sports.

These are just points on top of my head. There can be many more such doable suggestions, please feel free to contribute as your comments.

Hope that this new Indian Government will take some serious steps for the betterment of all sports. After all Good Times Have Come. Acche din aa gaye hain.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

This Appraisal Season...Have you learned the lesson?


In some IT companies it is that time of the year when an employee gets rewarded for his hard work done over the last year.Yes, the results of the annual appraisal will be out soon. All year long you have worked so hard to gain this reward, the reward of salary increment, the reward of promotion, the reward of bonus.

Have you got rewarded?
If Yes, that is Great! Congratulations!
If No, then don't be disheartened, just learn the most important lesson of your life and execute a plan to make it right the next year.

Here are some pointers:

1. Make sure to document all our achievements and accomplishments during the entire year so that you don't face any issues while filling the next year annual appraisal. You will have enough points to justify why you qualify for salary hike, promotion, bonus etc.

2. Make the right connects. Have you identified the key stakeholders or key decision makers who are going to play an important role in your appraisal? Have you made connects with them? Do they know who you are and what great work have you done in the current or last year?

3. Be wise. Learn to do things differently. Keep your eyes and ears open and look for "Problems" or "Issues". Why? Because that is where to you can go and make a difference. Identify a current problem, visualize what would happen if the problem is not resolved, that is, how big will it become in future? Then go and find a solution or options to solve it. Package the problem/ issues, solution and its benefits together. Now go and sell this BIG picture to the right stakeholder.

4. Update our resume.

5. Float our resume in the open job market. May be not for job search but just for knowing our market worth/ market value.

6. When you float your resume and get a response then appear for the interview. Do not skip it.

7. When you appear for the interview don't go unprepared. Prepare for the interview as if you are going to get hired for your dream job.

8. In case you fail in the interview. Receive the interview feedback in a positive way. Acquire knowledge. Upgrade your skills. Try again.

9. Once you get the desired offer. Negotiate.

10. Don't forget to assess yourself and identify the genuine reasons for your failure. Accept your shortcomings and work diligently to fix them in the real world.

11. Remember work is worship. Love your work, because that is what counts at the end of every appraisal cycle.

If you liked the above you may also like to read:

(1) 17 Tips To Act Smart At Workplace 

(2) Six Sins Of Communications

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

10 Tips for Assessment Phase of An IT Project

Assessment phase of an IT project is a very critical phase where all the business requirements are captured and scope is finalized. This is a very challenging phase due to its fast track nature and at the same time we need to make sure we plan diligently so that there are no last minute surprises in the assessment phase.

So if you are in IT and you are going to start the assessment phase of a IT Project then you may want to consider following key points before you commence the Assessment:

- Clearly articulate the purpose of assessment in terms of objective of the assessment and the final deliverable of the assessment.

- Scope : Clearly articulate what is in scope and what is out of scope for the assessment exercise.

- Timelines : Start and End time of the assessment phase.

- Resources : Make sure all resources are identified and allocated prior to the start date. This includes resources from the client perspective as well. Without client commitment for resources you will not be able to do fair assessment.

- Manage Expectations : Make sure all the stakeholders and resources are aware of their roles and responsibilities. They should know what is expected out of them and the key dates on which they have any action item. This includes stakeholders from your team and from the client team as well.

- Templates : Make sure you agree with the client on the templates which will be used during the assessment phase.

- Reporting : Make sure get agreement from the client on the reporting needs. This includes daily or weekly reports.

- Documentation Sharing : Make sure you identify the platform to share documents with all stakeholders. It may be SharePoint, local network drive or any other medium.

- Time slots from key stakeholders : Make sure you block the time slots for each stakeholder ahead of time so that all critical stakeholders are available for the meetings.

- Final Presentation : Make sure you agree with the customer on the contents of the final presentation which will be a result/ final outcome of the assessment phase. Also, block time from all key stakeholders for the final presentation.

How Much Money Would An Indian IT Professional Save In USA?





Most Indian IT Professionals ask this question:

How much will I save once I go Onsite(specifically San Jose, California, USA)?


Making an attempt to answer this million dollar question :


Lets do the math:

For the sake of calculation let us assume you will earn $72,000 per year, that is, $6000 per month at Onsite.
Deduct 36% per month for tax, that is, $6000-$2160=$3840. This is your take home salary per month.

Now, the approximate monthly expenses in usa for indian family:



  1. Approx $1700 (EDIT: $2200 as of December 2014) per month for house renting 1 BR apartment (this may vary from $1600 to $2200 based on location and community, we will consider $1900 for the sake of our calculations)
  2. Approx. $60 per family member for medical insurance. Assuming you are single, expense is $60 per month.
  3. Approx. $250 per month for grocery.(For a single person this will be much less)
  4. Approx. $40 per month for internet.
  5. Approx. $40 per month for Vonage(landline for India calling).
  6. Approx. $60 per month for mobile expenses (this may vary from $40 to $80 based on your plan and data usage).
  7. Approx. $90 per month for car insurance(this may vary based on driving experience).
  8. Approx. $50 per month for electricity.
  9. Approx. $50 per month for additional charges related to apartment water, sewer, garbage.
  10. Approx. $20 per month for apartment insurance.
  11. Approx. $200 for gas(fuel) spend in case you own and use a car.


So, total monthly expenses are approx. $2760.

Note : If you are staying in a shared accommodation then most expenses will be shared and savings will be much higher.


Now, deduct your expenses from your in hand salary to arrive at your savings $3840-$2760= $1080.


Considering exchange transfer rate of $1=Rs 60.

$1080*60=Rs 64,800.

Now compare it with your India take home salary minus your monthly expenses and you will get a fair idea of how much you will save at Onsite.


Please note, this is just an example only for San Jose, California and actual figures may vary from state to state, city to city and person to person based on actual salary.


The intention of providing these details is to give a fair idea of expenses/ savings. It may not be accurate. In general, on the monetary front you will always benefit by going to USA. Also, there are several lifestyle aspects that one needs to consider before making any decision.


Hope this helps.


Tip: If you need to know how to save money in usa, you can explore the various deals that are offered from time to time on Thanksgiving, Christmas etc. You can also use groupon for group deals, here is the link: Groupon SF BayArea Deals 

EDITS(based on the comments received based from readers):



  1. Medical and dental Insurance may cost more based on the plans provided by employers.
  2. If you buy a car. You need to include the EMI.
  3. Grocery expenses depend on your eating habits.
  4. Travel to India for two atleast once per year needs to be considered. VISA renewal cost once per every three year needs to be considered as well.
  5. Eat outs, clothes, trips, house hold items, and many more things which come up in normal living needs to be considered.
  6. Based on the tax saving options your chose and the investments made, you will be able to save tax and get refunds at the end of the year

Watch the Video Blog Here



Compare USA savings with savings in Singapore: How Much MOney Can You Save In Singapore

Must Read for L1 Aspirants: L1B Visa Interview Experience 2016


Other popular blogs: How To Make Money Online?

Also read: USA Visa Basics L1A, L1B, H1B Visa Rules and if you are working for an IT Services Company like Infosys, TCS, Wipro then you may want to read How To Go Onsite?

In 2016: H-1B and L-1 Visa Processing Fees Increases by $4000 and $4500 respectively

Bonus: If you are interested in getting better at setting goals you may want to read this recommended book for setting high goals...


Sunday, June 1, 2014

Success

Here are some great insipirational, motivational quotes on success:





Some inspiring books on personal success:



If you read the above, you may also want to read the below mentioned other blog posts of interest:

How Much Would IT Professional Save In USA
USA Visa Basics L1A L1B and H1B
How To Go Onsite?
Most Valuable Skill For Your Life
21 Important Things To Know If You are Traveling To USA For The First Time
How To Hunt For Job After Career Break
5 Secrets of Salary Negotiations

Lower Berth Quota & Senior Citizen Quota on IRCTC


I am sure most of us have done train ticket booking or rail ticket booking at the railway stations across India many number of times. 

With the advances in technology online train ticket booking or online train reservations on IRCTC have become a faster way of getting train tickets or railway ticket booking done.

It took me a lot of time to figure out how to book train tickets for my parents in the senior citizen quota or lower berth quota on IRCTC website. 

Problem is that when you login to IRCTC you just get these options : 
General Quota
Tatkal Quota 
Ladies quota. 
You don't see an option for Senior Citizen Quota or Lower Berth Quota. If you have two senior citizens then you don't know how to book tickets for both senior citizens and get lower berth allocated for both of them. So here is what you need to do to book tickets for senior citizens in 3AC coach.


1. Let us assume you have two passengers over age of 60, that is, two senior citizens traveling together. The trick here is that we will not book both passengers on the same ticket. In order to see availability in Senior Citizen quota or Lower Berth quota we need to book one ticket per senior citizen(that is two tickets for two passengers). Downside of this approach is that you may end up booking tickets in different coaches but the advantage is that you will be able to book tickets from the Senior Citizen quota or Lower Berth quota even when the General quota is showing waiting list. Lets look at the following steps.

2. You need to select the source, destination and select the quota as General.

3. Now select your train and select class as 3A.

4. Now on the screen where you enter passenger information just enter name of one of the passengers(don't enter both of the passengers together). Make sure you check the flag for senior citizen to Yes.

5. Before you go to payment screen you will see the availability in the Senior Citizen quota or Lower Berth quota on your screen. If you see availability is >=2, then you may go ahead and book the ticket for first passenger and then follow the same process for second passenger.


More often than not you will get reservations done by using these steps and that too on lower berth quota. Reason is that this quota is applicable only for :

Female(above 45 Year)/Senior Citizen/Travelling alone

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Also how many of you know that there is a google chrome extension which can be used to auto-fill the railway reservation form on IRCTC so that every time you login you don't need to enter the passenger details. It saves a lot of time during tatkal bookings and is extensively used by the travel agents on IRCTC. How can you get it? Simple, go to google and search for Magic autofill google chrome extension. Install it and follow the simple steps and you are good to go for your rail reservation.

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Spread the word out, share it with everyone.

Read another great article on 
27 Hollywood Movies With Unpredictable Ending, You cannot afford to miss