Lucknow, Agra Cantt and Gorakhpur railway stations of the state would offer airport lounge like facilities to passengers at an affordable rates from next year. They are a part of the 19 railway station identified by the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) for developing ‘Executive Lounges’. The lounge would provide facilities, including wash and change, WiFi, internet, live TV, channel music, buffet services, newspaper/bookstand, luggage racks, shoe shiner, train information system and concierge services for pre-departure and post-arrival assistance to passengers.
The tenders for the same would be finalised in October and the lounges are expected to become functional by January/February 2016. The facility would come up at Lucknow, Agra Cantt, Gorakhpur, Jaipur, Vijayawada, New Delhi, Kathgodam, Patna, Sealdah, Howrah, Bhubaneshwar, Vishakhapatnam, Ahmedabad, Puri, Nagpur, Madurai, Bengaluru, Ludhiana and Amritsar stations.
The executive lounge would accept cash, credit and debit cards and make travel safer as passengers would no more be required to carry cash. “The swanky executive lounges, which will be a state-of-the-art facility, can help train passengers recover from tiredness during the journey. Also, waiting for a train will no longer be an ordeal,” said IRCTC public relation manager Sandeep Dutta.
The executive lounges would come up at another 30 stations in a year’s time. Once operational, it would change the profile of passenger amenities at these stations. The Railways would identify space at stations, which would be handed over to IRCTC for setting up the lounge.