A PNR is an abbreviated form of Passenger Name Record (PNR) in a travel Industry. It is basically a record of the itinerary for a passenger or group of passengers (travelling together) in the database of a Computer Reservation System (CRS).
A PNR status is widely used term in the travel industry including railways and airlines industry. The PNR was initially introduced by airlines for exchanging reservation information in case of passengers who require flights of multiple airlines to complete their journey. The standards for interline messaging of PNR is defined by IATA and ATA.
The introduction of PNRs was originally intended for air travel; however, its usage has now spread across the bookings of railways tickets, hotels, tours, car rentals, etc.
Information needed for generating PNR
In order to complete the booking of tickets and generate the PNR, the following information is required by the CRS (Computer Reservation System).
(1) Name of the passenger or passengers travelling together in a group.
(2) Contact details for the travel agent or airline office (It is usually the 8-digit IATA code of the travel agency or airline office)
(3) Ticketing details
(4) Itinerary of at least one portion of travel
(5) Name of the person who provides the travel information
There are no specific rules or guidelines for layout and content of a PNR. However, most of the CRS systems have similarities in data content and format to suit the requirements of mapping PNR data effortlessly to AIRIMP messages.
How PNR is generated?
Whenever a passenger books an itinerary, the travel agent creates a PNR in the Computer Reservation System used by the airline or railway company through company’s website.At this stage of booking, the CRS will generate an alpha-numeric record locator that remains the same irrespective of any further changes. This record locator is used for identifying PNR in the particular database.
On booking of an airline ticket, every airline creates their own booking record along with a unique record locator that is transmitted to the CRS and gets stored in the database.
Railways PNR Status
A railway PNR number is the 10 digit unique number printed on the left hand side of the top of railways tickets. It indicates the confirmed or waitlisted status of your ticket along with the coach and seat numbers.
There are many ways of getting the PNR status including checking PNR status online on IRCTC site, by telephone, by mobile using SMS, or by using services of various travel websites like Cleartrip or Rediff.
Airline PNR Status
The airline Passenger Name Record (PNR) is generated by the airlines for journey booked by passenger. This PNR number gets stored in the reservation and departure control databases of airlines. The number of fields of information in PNR system varies from airline to airline and it may extend up to 60 fields and sub-fields.
PNR allows each passenger to access the relevant information regarding his/her departure and return flights,connecting flights (if any), or any other special services needed on boarding the flight, etc.
Most of the airlines and travel agencies across the world host their PNR databases on Computer Reservations System (CRS) or with Global Distribution System (GDS) companies such as Worldspan,Amadeus, Sabre, and Galileo.