Parking Ticket

Old Jul 4th, 2002, 05:24 AM
  #1  
Linda
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Parking Ticket

My husband and I traveled in Italy last September. We visited San Gimignano one day, parking on the street where lots of other folks were parked as well. There were no "No Parking" signs posted, or any other indication that this may be a no parking zone. Yesterday we received a registered letter from the policia in San Gimignano stating that we had parking illegally and owed 37 some odd euro for that indiscretion, if not paid soon the amount would be doubled. Anyone else have any experience with traffic violations while in Europe. Should we pay the fine? Is this a scam? Thanks
 
Old Jul 4th, 2002, 05:29 AM
  #2  
xxx
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And just what can they do to you if you don't pay? I would ignore it.
 
Old Jul 4th, 2002, 05:50 AM
  #3  
Jim
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Was it a rental car? If so they got your name from the rental agency. Check with them. Chances are if it is legit, and you don't pay, you will find a charge show up on the credit card you used to rent the car.
 
Old Jul 4th, 2002, 05:51 AM
  #4  
Suzy
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I smell a scam. How would the police have gotten your ID, except thru the car-rental agency? In my experience in the US, car-rental agencies notify the customer that the fee will go on their credit card.
 
Old Jul 4th, 2002, 06:23 AM
  #5  
jen
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I would write a very gushy letter back about how much you loved San G. and Italy and what your favorite foods were, and how much you loved seeing whatever,and remind them that there were no 'no parking signs' and that you tried hard to find out if there was a parking fee...etc...I'd bet they'll drop it!
 
Old Jul 4th, 2002, 06:25 AM
  #6  
Denise
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I'd probably just pay the ticket. Sure beats them doubling the price. Plus I wouldn't want to have to worry about being arrested for nonpayment of fines or whatever the next time I traveled to Italy. Who cares if its a scam...we're only talking $40
 
Old Jul 4th, 2002, 06:28 AM
  #7  
parking
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If you had a rental car, contact the agency. They should tell you what to do. If you used a friends/family car, contact them. In a case of driving your own car(new car delivery in Europe), there is not much they could do now, but if you ever go back, there might be some problems.
 
Old Jul 4th, 2002, 06:58 AM
  #8  
Tony Hughes
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I can only give you the UK situation but...in my current role, I lead a team of people who look after the car parks in Falkirk. We occasionally get tourists in rental cars parking in inappropriate areas and ticket them. I cannot think of a time when we have given up chasing someone for the money. Usually the rental car company who place it on your credit card with an 'admin' fee thrown in for good measure.

If you parked illegally, I'd pay it. If there were no signs - which I'd doubt - then you may have a case. Either way, not worth going back there/arguing the toss about it.
 
Old Jul 4th, 2002, 08:12 AM
  #9  
Alice Twain
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Even thought the car was yours and not from a rental, the San Gimignano city police would contact your countries offices in order to get your Id, and if there was no parking sign you were liable to be fined, so were alll the other cars parked in the same place (itlaians do it: we park wnere we should not hoping that the policeman won't notice). On the other hand most such fees are also notified with a piece of paper stuck to the front window. If there was none, I think that the best thing you might do is to check with San Gimignano Vigili urbani (the city police that deals with such matters). Write to [email protected], explain your problem and ask for a contact with a vigili urbani officer that can check if the document you have received is authentic. You may have to send a copy of it by fax. In case it is a scam, you might help the Italian police to stop it, in case it is not you will still be free to decide whether to behave like an honest person or... do what an italian would do ^_^
 
Old Jul 4th, 2002, 08:23 AM
  #10  
Mike
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I just returned from picking up my BMW on the European Delivery Program. While traveling 100 mph on the autoroute in France, my wife noticed a sign that said words to the effect that radar detector would be taking pictures and ticketing those speeding.

I'm sure they can trace me through my BMW German transit license plates, but how could they possibly force me to pay for any fines or tickets?
 
Old Jul 4th, 2002, 08:35 AM
  #11  
don't
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We got so frustrated understanding where and for how long you could park,we gave up and just parked!This was especially true in England!We would find parking tickets on our windshields very politely tucked in plastic bags!I am proud/ashamed to admoit that they became a joke after the third one.We moved on to France,Germany,Switzerland and Italy.By the end of our 3 week vacation we had accumulated a total of 8 tickets.That was two summers ago and we heard nothing from anyone-we had a rental and the charges never appeared on our credit card.
I same pay nothing and puit the ticket in your memory book-we made a collage of ours.We actually did pay for a speeding ticket in of all places ,Germany!Just as we were lewaving Germany to enter Switzerlan,we werepulled over and had to pay on the spot or go to the police station!
 
Old Jul 4th, 2002, 08:39 AM
  #12  
dumbaussie
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In aussie, if I get a parking ticket i keep it and then put it on the window the next time I park illegally.

Don't know for sure if the coppa saw it and left, but so far I haven't gotten done with a new ticket. Could that work in Europe?
 
Old Jul 4th, 2002, 10:11 AM
  #13  
Linda
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I really appreciate all of your thoughts on this dilemna. The thing is...we didn't have a ticket on our windshield and until yesterday (almost ten months later, we were in San G on September 9th)had no idea that we had ever parked illegally.
 
Old Jul 4th, 2002, 10:41 AM
  #14  
Mike
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Linda,

Maybe someone pulled the ticket off your car and parked illegally and used it.

I rented a car in Charleston, SC, and got a parking ticket & threw it away. The rental car agency sent it to me along with the dates I had the car -- I ended up paying for it with no extras.

I got a speeding ticket in California in the mid-80's and never paid it. Haven't heard from them. Maybe I should never go back to California?

 
Old Jul 4th, 2002, 10:52 AM
  #15  
Doug Weller
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Let's go to Europe and park whereever we please, we can just ignore the tickets or put them in a memory book and laugh at them?

If you're going to do this, please stay home and do it.
 
Old Jul 4th, 2002, 10:55 AM
  #16  
stay
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Doug ,now that you've vented,happy July 4 to you and the colonies!
 
Old Jul 4th, 2002, 11:11 AM
  #17  
xxx
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If somebody checks your passport at some EU border (or entering or leaving Schengen) and you have unpayed tickets, they will call the police and you will have to pay on the spot.
 
Old Jul 4th, 2002, 11:52 AM
  #18  
you're
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You must be joking,right?Like they care aboutparking tickets when they let in illegals..............
 
Old Jul 4th, 2002, 12:01 PM
  #19  
Alice Twain
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Dumbaussie

It works in italy too!!!

Linda

I still invite you to contact San Gimignano administration. You can still chose not to pay, but in case this is a scam you might really help some other tourists less "unhonest" than you.
As for the ten months, they are not unusual in Italy. There is even a law that says that if the ticket arrives at your home more than 3 years later than the fact, you are not supposed to pay. Now, guess why this law was needed?!
 
Old Jul 4th, 2002, 02:45 PM
  #20  
Geoff
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I think a collection of these responses has given the eventual best advice. First, since you didn't get something on the windshield and you felt you were not parked incorrectly you may be right in suspecting a scam. Despite Alice's post there is nothing in the original message stating whether this is a rental or Linda's own car. If it's her own car then it's almost impossible to think someone had the right resources to both correctly know the car was in San Gimignano and get the name/address without being the police. If it was a rental then the agency must be involved. If it's an agency then the *last* thing you want to do is contact them if you suspect a scam. Contact the real police to verify, and Alice has nicely got an email so you don't have to make international phone calls. That I think should be the first step.

As Alice says, if it's not legit then the police there should be very intersted in seeing exactly what you got and tracking where it came from. But if it is legit, then I think Jen has got the next right step - complain (politely) if you feel so inclined - about not receiving a windshield notice plus the lack of signs, and see what happens.

Then as Tony says, if it's all legit and they don't forgive the ticket - pay it. If you're in the EU then what some Americans may not realize is that it might as well be a ticket in your home country. The last thing you want to be is don't ([email protected]) whose arrogance of "I'm above figuring this out, so deal with it" is liable to have landed them in jail before leaving Europe.
 

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