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A Complaint about the Ticket Controllers in Budapest

A Complaint about the Ticket Controllers in Budapest

Aug 25th, 2003, 06:37 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 5
A Complaint about the Ticket Controllers in Budapest

The incident occurred on 8 August at about 10:00 pm, four of us were looking for the ticket office at the Deak Ferenc ter station in Budapest as we did not have the exact change to buy the tickets from the ticketing machine. We searched for the office but without success. We took the escalator down and reached the platform. Three of us were stopped by the ticket controllers there while one of us was still searching for the ticket office. The ticket controllers asked us for our tickets and we told them that we had not bought them yet as we had not yet located the ticket office. Our other friend soon joined us and explained everything to the ticket controllers in great detail. We also showed them all our previously used tickets and told them that we had bought tickets each time. They did not seem to listen to our explanation and requested we pay the fine. We did try our best to explain the situation but they continued to demand we pay the fine. The female ticket controller was extremely rude and threatened to call the police unless we paid the fine. We were helpless and angry but we were forced to pay the fine.

After we had paid the fine, the male ticket controller brought us to the ticket office. What was ridiculous was that the office looked closed (The blind was pulled down and the room was dark.)! The ticket controller admitted that it might be closed but stated that we should try to knock at the door as there should be staff members present. I really found the situation to be unbearable.

dice is offline  
Aug 25th, 2003, 07:00 AM
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 226
That's remind me that upset guy fined on a bus in Florence : he was caught by inspectors without having his ticket stamped.
Or a friend of mine who, while wandering for information inside a u-bahn station in Munich, was fined as "schwarz-fahrer" as he crossed a dim red line on the floor without a validated ticket.
Rules apply everywhere.

LeCanard is offline  
Aug 25th, 2003, 11:36 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 33,424
I can understand if you couldn't find an office you might have gotten frustrated, but this same thing happens in Vienna, actually. Of course you cannot go to the platform without a ticket, this is true in any city subway system I have ever been on because they don't collect tickets on the train but before. While I can understand, the fact is you were violating the regulations and going to the embarkment point without a ticket. Given that you had ridden the system before, you knew exactly what you were doing, so I also agree there is no excuse and you don't really have anything to complain about.

The same thing happened to me in Vienna as they are pretty feeb when it comes to those tickets and machines, etc (their ticket office was closed for lunchtime or something), but I didn't go to the platform on my own without one, hoping to get away with it. YOu just have to be more careful about either having a ticket in advance or having correct change. Actually, now that I look at your post, this happened at 10 pm at night when most offices in many subway systems in all cities are closed, so I guess I just lost any sympathy for you. The same thing would happen in Paris, and if you jumped over the turnstiles, etc to get to the platform and were stopped by the guards for not having a ticket, you'd get fined there also. Their metro ticket offices aren't usually open at that hour, either.
Christina is online now  
Aug 25th, 2003, 03:23 PM
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 101
I was on a vaporetto in Venice last summer when an inspector escorted two guys off since they couldn't produce a valid ticket. Don't know whether they had to pay a fine or what since the boat moved on leaving them all at the dock.
I agree with the posters who stated that if you violate regulations, you have to pay the fine IF you are caught.
travelerone is offline  
Aug 25th, 2003, 06:22 PM
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 1,091
The ticket controllers were just doing their job. You are not allowed to be in the platform area without tickets. One ride on the system will orient you to that. Since you can buy a three day transportation pass for only about $7.50 that is good on all metro lines, buses and trams why deal with one ride ticketing anyway? The ticket controllers are to be found everywhere; in the station platform areas, on the trains and at the entrances and exits to the platforms. In a one week visit to Budapest I would estimate I was checked easily 6-8 times. Much stricter system than systems in other European cities.

Larry J
LarryJ is offline  
Aug 25th, 2003, 06:45 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 5,107
While technically it might have been dice's fault, I think it was downright nasty of the controllers to insist on the fine. First of all, it would seem obvious that their intentions were good. Second of all, we are talking about Hungary here -- signs are pretty much incomprehensible as Hungarian is not a Latin-based language. And lastly, wouldn't you cut a little slack to visitors from another country?

Something similar happened to me about 30 years ago on a bus in Bulgaria and I remember it still. Not because of the fine, which was a very small amount of money, but because we were made to feel so terrible about what was an honest mistake. I'll tell you, everyone else on the bus was appalled that the ticket taker insisted on fining us, and the driver gave us some peaches to try to make up for it!
Marilyn is offline  
Aug 25th, 2003, 07:02 PM
Posts: n/a
So much for "local culture"....

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