Monday, 04th November 2013, Colombo: The National Mobile Service Provider, Sri Lanka Telecom Mobitel which introduced the innovative mTicketing service which also offers purchasing train tickets via your Mobitel phone, has now extended its services for the greater convenience of government employees through a new service titled ‘mWarrants’.
Government employees can now reserve their train tickets against their railway warrants, allowing them the convenience of planning their trips ahead of time.
Purchasing train tickets via Mobitel’s mTicketing service was initially available only for the reservation of tickets for trains that plied from the Colombo Fort Railway Station. However a joint collaboration between Mobitel and Sri Lanka Railways quickly made this service available in main railway stations islandwide.
This service is now widely available in areas adjacent to the Colombo-Kandy railway line, the Colombo-Matara coastal railway line and the Colombo- Batticaloa railway line as well.
In addition, it was also extended for the convenience of commuters plying the northern railway line upto Kilinochchi on September 14th this year. This facility allows residents in the area to reserve their tickets at the Kilinochchi Railway Station or alternatively at the Mobitel Branch in Jaffna. Mobitel and Sri Lanka Railways have already commenced plans to further extend the mTicketing service to commuters plying the Colombo-Trincomalee railway line.
By simply dialing 365 on their Mobitel phone, government employees can reserve their train tickets by providing the details of their warrants and immediately receive a reference number from Mobitel. Upon producing the special reference number along with the warrant at any mTicketing service counter, passengers can collect their reserved tickets without any hassle.
In the past government employees received their railway warrants 14 days prior to their travel date. However, with the mWarrants service, government employees now have a 45-day period, in which they can plan their travel and reserve their train tickets accordingly. At the time of reservation, the respective railway warrant does not have to be in hand – a mention of when it will be received can be communicated via 365 and a reservation will be made accordingly.
Mr. B.A.P. Ariyaratne, General Manager, Sri Lanka Railways expressing his views said, “There is an emerging demand for this new service for ticket reservations. It is to meet this demand that we collaborated with Mobitel four years ago when we first launched our pilot project. This service has grown immensely over the years, and we have even shifted the times for advance train ticket bookings from midnight to 10am – to make it more convenient to passengers. The mWarrants scheme now allows us to also serve government employees, and provide them with greater flexibility in terms of planning their travel.”
“Some 35,000-40,000 warrants are issued each month and therefore the demand for the new mWarrant system will be significant. These figures further increase during school vacation,” he said.
Mobitel’s Senior General Manager of Marketing, Mr. Nalin Perera who also spoke at the launch event said, “Mobitel has worked very closely with Sri Lanka Railways for the last four years. This new initiative is an extension of the railway ticketing service we offer on 365, and is one that is of extreme importance, so we can cater to a sector that was previously not catered to under this service. The progress we have achieved in this sphere would not have been possible if not for the keen dedication shown by Sri Lanka Railways, and I must thank Mr. Ariyaratne and his team for their unstinted support and the effort taken to provide greater convenience to railway commuters.”