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Please explain to me the reason for ticket validation

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Please explain to me the reason for ticket validation

Old Jul 28th, 2010, 08:02 AM
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Please explain to me the reason for ticket validation

Whenever someone mentions going to Italy, for example, and taking the train or the vaporetto in Venice, someone always warns, "Don't forget to validate your ticket in the machine so you won't get fined."

Can someone please explain to me the whole point of validation (besides soaking unsuspecting tourists). I mean, you buy the ticket. Why the hell do you need validation?
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Old Jul 28th, 2010, 08:04 AM
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You could buy the ticket anytime. The validation puts a time stamp on it.
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Old Jul 28th, 2010, 08:08 AM
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To stop people using th same ticket hundreds of times on services that don't have ticket checkers or barriers.
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Old Jul 28th, 2010, 08:14 AM
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Ticket validation is required for tickets that do not include compulsory seat reservations. Based on recent changes in the Italian train system, I think R (Regionale) trains are the only trains that do not have compulsory seat reservations.

Why? R tickets are for any R train at any time that runs between your departure station and your destination and for the class of service for which you paid. You just get on the train and sit anywhere in a car of the correct class. You must validate you ticket (which means stick it in the yellow machine at the station to stamp it with the current date and time) because on these trains no conductor on the train may ever reach you to punch your ticket before you reach your destination. If you didn't validate your ticket and no conductor punched your ticket, you could use the same ticket again (and again). You could cheat the system. If a conductor sees that you didn't validate your ticket, you are assumed to be a cheat and receive a hefty fine.

Ticket validation is not as important as it used to be since the majority of trains (IC, ES, AV) require tickets that are for a specific seat on a specific train at a specific time. In my opinion, it's always a good idea to validate these tickets as well to establish the habit. It doesn't hurt to do so.
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Old Jul 28th, 2010, 08:17 AM
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See, unlike US trains and buses, there is no conductor and the driver does not take your ticket. It saves a lot on labor costs. You could (as I have done) use the same ticket many times without stamping (I was ignorant, not a crook and it was a 1 day pass so I really wasn't cheating the authorities).

It is really directed at locals and some tourists from nameless countries, not at you. But they take this very seriously, and they will be happy to fine you anyway. If you get caught on the ferry or train with an unstamped ticket, it will be very expensive. !
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Old Jul 28th, 2010, 08:23 AM
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Yes, validation is used for local transportation (local bus, vaporetto, metro) in much the same way. Even a one-day pass must be validated as you begin your first ride. Also most local transport tickets are based on time. A simple ticket might be valid for as many connections as you can make in 60 minutes, so a time stamp is important. A one-day pass is actually probably a 24-hour pass, so it could be used across two different days, again making the time stamp important. As Ackislander said, rather than have staff collect and check tickets on every local vehicle, there are transit inspectors who ride randomly and can ask to see your ticket. If you don't have a validated ticket, you will be fined.
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Old Jul 28th, 2010, 08:25 AM
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If you don;t validate the ticket they have no way of knowig that you are ot using the same ticket multiple times. And if yuo do't validate the fine can be in excesof $100 - so be sure to do so.
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Old Jul 28th, 2010, 08:30 AM
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Please explain to me the reason for this question.

How do buses and trains prevent dishonest multiple use of tickets where you live?
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Old Jul 28th, 2010, 08:33 AM
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How do buses and trains prevent dishonest multiple use of tickets where you live?>

well in the US of A we are all honest - that may be the reason for the naive to you question?

Don't judge the rest of the world by what goes on in the U.K. i guess.
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Old Jul 28th, 2010, 08:38 AM
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We were fined once, because the ticket agent stamped my ticket for the wrong train time. The train agent looked at my ticket, said it was for the next train, and fined me on the spot.
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Old Jul 28th, 2010, 08:47 AM
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Yes, we are sooooo honest in the US we have no prisons, no jails, and no need for lawyers or judges.
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Old Jul 28th, 2010, 08:47 AM
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I will try to explain it to you in a way that others have not:

the tickets that are often sold in Europe for railways are what you and I might call an "open" ticket, i.e., they are good for a PERIOD of time and NOT for a specific DAY AND TIME.

When you validate the ticket THAT makes it "good" for the date you use it and ONLY for that date. This is why the comment above regarding tickets with specific seat reservations numbers on a specific train and on a specific date usually don't need any further validation.

As to your overall let us say "assumption" that this whole thing is some sort of evil plot to extort you out of even more money...there is little any of us can actually do about that attitude which, hopefully, will eventually change.
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Old Jul 28th, 2010, 08:48 AM
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flanneruk,

In the US, there are enough conductors on every train to "punch" every single passenger's ticket or check to see if they have a monthly pass.

k9corps,

Is it clear now? European conductors are expensive to hire, and many people use the trains, so instead of having enough conductors on every train to punch tickets so they can't be used again, you punch your own ticket and a handful of conductors "spot check". If you get caught cheating the system, you get walloped with a huge fine as an example to others not to take the chance.

In Italy, where almost everybody uses the trains or buses to get around relatively short distances,, it would take quite a few conductors walking through the cars or being on the bus to punch everybody's tickets before they needed to get off.
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Old Jul 28th, 2010, 09:20 AM
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"How do buses and trains prevent dishonest multiple use of tickets where you live?"

In most of the US, there are no tickets for local buses. Bus drivers police the payment of fares: passengers drop their fare in a box next to the driver as they board, or display a pass for the driver to see.
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Old Jul 28th, 2010, 09:31 AM
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To add to what kayd said:

Unlike Europe, most of our subways system in the US are not on the honor system. You have to physically use a ticket, token, or electronic pass to make the turnstiles open to allow you access to the subway platform. Some also make you do the same when you exit the system to ensure you pay an supplement for a longer ride.
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Old Jul 28th, 2010, 10:23 AM
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flanner: (you arrogant ass): Presumably, your question has been answered adequately answered by others, so I won't waste my time.

zeppole: I have been on trains in Italy for which you were required to validate and which had a conductor ask for your ticket. Explanation, please?

OK, I get some of everyone's explanation. So, would it be so difficult to date or otherwise mark the ticket at time of sale to indicate that it's valid from point A to point B on a particular date? Or on buses, for instance: In some places in the US, you validate your ticket for short-run buses by inserting in a machine next to the driver (on the actual bus). That way, it's almost impossible to (a) enter the bus with an invalid ticket or (b) mistakenly get on w/o a validated ticket.
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Old Jul 28th, 2010, 10:29 AM
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the way you described buses is how it works in italy. You buy a ticket that isnt time/date stamped so you can use it any day/time (in most cases). Then there is a red box on the side of the platform that you stamp your ticket to validate. thus you cant use it again.

the conductors are on the trains but random, just doing spot checking to ensure that people are doing this - but they arent on every train. its more of a control to ensure people are doing it without having to have a conductor on each train.

its the same as in paris - you can buy a carnet of 10 metro tickets to use anytime and the time/date gets stamped when you go through the turnstile to get to the platform so you cant use the tickets again - the only difference is there are no barries (hence the need for the random conductor checks)

Hope this helps!
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Old Jul 28th, 2010, 10:37 AM
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"So, would it be so difficult to date or otherwise mark the ticket at time of sale to indicate that it's valid from point A to point B on a particular date?"
There is no way for the ticket machine to know if you are using the ticket right away or a week or a month from the time of purchase. The ticket is valid for one trip within the next 90 days (or whatever the time period), and you make it valid for the particular trip by punching just before using it. Most locals I know buy a group of tickets at once and just pull out when when they need it, with no way how soon that might be after purchasing. Since bus driver don't sell tickets or accept currency, tickets must be purchased before boarding, so carrying a supply makes a lot of sense. It might be challenging to find an open ticket venue during off hours in some areas.

"Or on buses, for instance: In some places in the US, you validate your ticket for short-run buses by inserting in a machine next to the driver (on the actual bus). That way, it's almost impossible to (a) enter the bus with an invalid ticket or (b) mistakenly get on w/o a validated ticket."
Most local Italian buses I have seen have a door at the front or back for getting on, and a door in the middle for getting off. There is a validation machine or two on the bus--Get on the bus and head for the machine. The validation takes place ON the bus.
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Old Jul 28th, 2010, 10:38 AM
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Most locals I know buy a group of tickets at once and just pull one out when they need it, with no IDEA how soon that might be after purchasing.
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Old Jul 28th, 2010, 12:10 PM
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>

There is almost always a conductor on a train. The issue isn't that it's overkill to validate your ticket and then have a conductor also come around and ask to see it - duh - that's what the conductor's are there to do in the first place. The issue is that with so many people going for short rides on trains, most conductors don't ever make it around to asking everyone for a ticket. Which encourages people to buck the system. Which is why spot checks and heavy fines for those who DO buck the system is a deterrent.

>

Apparently, or they would have done it. If this is so important to you as to elicit all this righteous indignation, give up your day job and move to Europe and change their system so it's just like the one you deem superior. But I do have to add, IS IT SO DIFFICULT TO VALIDATE YOUR TICKET?? Cripes, it takes about half a second.
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