The New Year 2019 is finally here and it is now time to know what changes this year brings to our lives.
This year has brought with it several new additions and changes concerning our daily lives - from new Credit/Debit cards and chequebooks to changes in railway ticketing and Aadhaar Card rules.
Here are 8 important things that change for you in 2019.
Changes in Aadhaar card rules from 1 January
From 1 January, Aadhaar cardholders will be able change their date of birth on the card only once at an Aadhaar center. To make any changes for the second time, they will have to visit regional UIDAI centers.
Also, any other Aadhaar-related changes to the address or other details will have to be made using a PIN sent by UIDAI to the cardholder's address.
New railway ticketing facility for quick confirmation of wait-listed tickets
In a huge relief for rail passengers, Indian Railways is launching a new facility from 2019 to increase the number of confirmed tickets using advanced technology.
The waitlisted passengers, especially, will benefit from the new facility. Traveling Ticket Examiners (TTEs) would be informed of any ticket cancelations and vacant seats in real-time so that these can be allotted to wait-listed ticket holders immediately.
Personal accident cover for owner-drivers hiked; NPS made tax-free
Accidental Insurance: IRDAI raised the sum insured under owner-drivers' compulsory personal accident cover from Rs. 1L to Rs. 15L from 2019. After paying premium, subscribers would receive the receipt via SMS.
NPS tax-exemption: With effect from 1 January, National Pension Scheme (NPS) has been brought under "EEE" (exempt-exempt-exempt) tax category. Fund withdrawal would now be tax-free and NPS investment is eligible for tax exemption.
Changes in banking sector: Old Debit/Credit cards, chequebooks now invalid
All credit and debit-cum-ATM cards with a magstripe have become invalid on 1 January. Now, only those cards with an EMV chip are valid.
Also, Non-CTS (Non-Cheque Truncation System) cheques have been banned by RBI from 1 January. Only CTS-2010 cheques are valid for withdrawals. Banks no longer need to send CTS cheques to other banks for clearance; this process can be completed digitally.
Cars to cost more; 23 goods and services become cheaper
Many automakers are reportedly going to hike the prices of cars in 2019 depending on the dollar rate in order to mitigate the adverse effects of rising input cost and rupee depreciation against USD.
Meanwhile, the GST Council recently reduced tax rates on 23 goods and services, including electronic goods, digital cameras, TVs/monitor screens, and movie tickets among others, with effect from 1 January.