GNWL means

GNWL stands for “General Waiting List.” It is a term used in the Indian Railways reservation system. When a passenger books a train ticket and all the available seats are already reserved, they are placed on a waiting list.

The General Waiting List (GNWL) is one of the types of waiting lists, and it applies to tickets booked from the originating station of the train to any intermediate station, or from any intermediate station to the terminating station.

How GNWL Works

  1. Booking Status:
  • When you book a ticket and it falls under the General Waiting List, your ticket status will be shown as GNWL followed by a number. For example, GNWL 10 means you are the 10th person on the waiting list.
  1. Confirmation Process:
  • As other passengers cancel their tickets, those on the GNWL move up the list. If enough cancellations occur, your ticket status may change to RAC (Reservation Against Cancellation) or get confirmed.
  • The final status of your ticket (whether it is confirmed, RAC, or still on the waiting list) is determined just before the train’s departure, usually 4 hours before the scheduled departure time.
  1. Priority:
  • GNWL tickets have a higher chance of getting confirmed compared to other types of waiting lists, such as RLWL (Remote Location Waiting List) or PQWL (Pooled Quota Waiting List).

Example of GNWL Status Change

Here’s an example of how the status might change:

Date of BookingInitial StatusStatus 24 Hours Before DepartureFinal Status
1st JuneGNWL 15GNWL 5Confirmed
2nd JuneGNWL 10GNWL 3RAC 1
3rd JuneGNWL 20GNWL 7Waitlisted 1

Importance of GNWL

  • Higher Confirmation Probability: GNWL has a better chance of confirmation compared to other waiting lists due to its priority in the reservation system.
  • Travel Planning: Understanding your position in the GNWL can help in planning your travel better, including making alternate arrangements if necessary.

Checking GNWL Status

You can check your GNWL status using various methods:

  1. Online: Visit the Indian Railways official website or use apps like IRCTC, where you can enter your PNR number to check the current status.
  2. SMS: Send an SMS to the railway inquiry number with your PNR to receive the latest status.
  3. Call: Contact the railway inquiry helpline to get an update on your waiting list status.


GNWL is an important concept in the Indian Railways ticketing system, providing passengers with a clear indication of their chances of securing a seat. By understanding how GNWL works and monitoring your status, you can manage your travel plans more effectively.


  • “Indian Railways – Types of Waiting Lists.” IRCTC Official Website.
  • “Understanding PNR Status and GNWL.” Trainman.
  • “How Indian Railways’ Waiting List Works.” RailYatri.

the authorD. Trump