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It is quite normal to get confused while booking a train as you have to navigate through the intricacies of the Indian Railway system. Being one of the biggest railway networks in the world, the railway system employs a systematic approach to categorize its coaches and classes with designated codes. Every code reflects its classification and accommodation features such as SL refers to sleeper class, 1A (First Class), 2A (Second Class), 3A in train (Third Class), 2S (Second Seater), and CC (AC Chair Car). Each of these coaches are equipped with different facilities, prices and levels of comfort where customers can choose any of them as per their convenience. 

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3A Coach in Train for Passenger

3A class in Indian Railway is popular among passengers as it offers a balance between affordability and comfort. It is perfect for those travelers who seek air-conditioned travel without spending a cost equivalent to first or second class. A 3A coach in the train offers a comfortable journey with several amenities while sticking to the lower side of the fare structure. As simple as it sounds, 3A means in train refers to the 64 sleeping berths in a centralized air-conditioned compartment. Being budget-friendly, this class particularly does not offer most of the amenities like the First class. 

3A in Train

Seating Arrangement of 3A Class in Train

The air-conditioned 3A features 64 berths that can accommodate up to 64 passengers. In 3A class seats are configured in the form of 6 berths on one side of the aisle and 2 side berths in each compartment. The berths can be tuned into makeshift beds accommodating 1 passenger each during the night. During the day, the middle berth is tucked below to act like a backrest for the lower berth for sitting.  

Features and Facilities of 3AC

Class 3A in train features multiple facilities, however, unlike the first or second AC class. One of the distinguishing features of Third AC is that it is fully air-conditioned. This allows passengers to enjoy the calm and cool making it particularly more desirable during humid and rainy weather outside.  

Passengers can also enjoy complimentary bedding and linen along with pillows by the railway staff. Each berth also features charging ports, side tables, and complimentary meals (passengers can choose meals in advance while booking). 

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Benefits of 3A in Trains for Passengers

Passengers can enjoy multiple benefits like a comfortable journey in a centralized air-conditioned space, and complimentary meals along individual berths for added leisure. Unlike First-class or second-class services that cost a fortune, 3A class is quite affordable and offers cancellation charges waivers which allows people from every background to travel in comfort. 

3A Coach in Train

Availability and Booking in 3A Coach

The compartment of 3A in trains is the most popular class of service in trains among Indian railway passengers. Due to its affordability and services, the availability and the chances of booking rate of this class are always lower than other classes. Passengers can purchase the ticket online through any booking website. The 3A seats in trains usually run out rapidly before other seats in popular trains like Rajdhani or Udyan Express.. 

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CC and EC Classes in train

Just like 3A, CC and EC are classes of services in the Indian Railway system. CC refers to Chair car while EC is Executive Class in Indian Railway terminology. The CC class offers seating configuration in the form of 3 x 2 per row. Every passenger is assigned with individual seats upon booking to ensure convenience. CC coaches also have overhead bins to keep luggage just like in flights. While the EC class offers services much like in aircrafts. The EC coaches are entirely air-conditioned with only Chair car types seating arrangements. The seats are usually configured in 2 x 2 for more comfort and spaciousness.   

Difference between 3A and 3E in train

Just like 3A in train, 3E (3rd Tier Economy)  is also a class of service which is now rarely found in Indian Railway. Much like 3A, 3E are also configured with berths; however, the difference is the number of berths. 3E consists of  side berths making it a total 9 berths per compartment. This specific class is available in some of the Duronto trains and Garib Rath trains. 

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Frequently Asked Questions

  • What does 3A mean in train?  

3A in train refers to a specific class in the Indian Railways system that refers to 3rd Tier AC. This fare serves as the most popular and affordable among the Indian population due to the multiple services offered. 

  • What is 3A and 3E on the train? 

Just like First class or Second class, 3A and 3E refers to Third Tier AC and Third AC Economy in railway terminology. Both classes share certain similarities however, the only difference is the number of berths in each compartment. 

  • Which coach is best, 3A or 3E? 

Both 3A Coach and 3E Coach have certain similarities however, the later one is rarely available and can be found in some of the Duronto and Garib Rath trains. Due to the availability and services. 3A is a better option. 

  • Which seat is best in 3AC? 

The choice of seat in 3A in the train is subjective. Passengers can choose their seats by looking at the seat map during booking. However, it is recommended not to book a middle berth as it can be restrictive and suffocating. Prefer a lower berth if traveling with family or side berth if traveling alone.

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