Validating train tickets?

Aug 27th, 2011, 04:53 PM
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Validating train tickets?

We have 2 TGV tickets from Bordeaux to Paris. Be that as it may, the tkts were purchased by American Express Travel Co. and mailed to us. They are paper w/ all necessary info:class, coach,seat # etc printed by SNCF. So, I'm reading in the Fodor's Travel Guide the following: "Before boarding, you must punch your tkt. in one of the ORANGE machines at the entrance to the platforms, or else the ticket collector will fine you 15E." In the next paragraph it says "Don't forget to validate your ticket at the YELLOW ticket punchers, usually at the entrance to the platforms". My question woUld be "orange"?, "yellow"? or not at all? Thanks.
330east is offline  
Aug 27th, 2011, 05:09 PM
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There are different kinds of trains: some with reserved seats, others (cheaper usually) without. I'm fairly sure you don't have to validate reserved tickets (have time/date/seat number on each ticket), because if you don't use them they probably become worthless anyway (unless you have changed them ahead of time).

The point of validation is to mark generic tickets (no reserved seats) that could be used on any date as used so people can't re-use them; an inspector may inspect your tickets to make sure they have a machine-printed validation time/date/station on them.
Andrew is online now  
Aug 27th, 2011, 06:15 PM
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IF your ticket is issued for a SPECIFIC date and train there is no need to validate them further since they can only be used on that particular train. Make sense?
Dukey1 is offline  
Aug 27th, 2011, 06:31 PM
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If that's what your tickets look like, validate them in the yellow-ish machines. They are at the start of all (or ever several) tracks and elsewhere in stations. You can use any machine you pass.

The ONLY tickets that do not have to be validated are those you print at home.
djkbooks is offline  
Aug 27th, 2011, 06:35 PM
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Some tickets for specific journeys can be refunded (sometimes only partially) or exchanged, depending on the after sale conditions for the ticket purchased, usually only within an hour of scheduled departure.
djkbooks is offline  
Aug 27th, 2011, 07:03 PM
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Thanks all for your rapid response. So, I went to the link provided by "djk" and the same person who said use the yellow and orange machines must have written the directions for the yellow machines. The directions are to "insert ticket face up (magnetic stripe down)". Sheesh. If one inserts the tkt face up, the mag. stripe is up. If the mag. strip is down the tkt is face down. This may be a small thing but I don't want to be standing in the station in front of a yellow machine cursing) while the train is pulling out. Thanks
330east is offline  
Aug 27th, 2011, 07:25 PM
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It makes no difference. Insert the ticket one way or the other, and you will hear a click when it is validated. Look at the ticket to see if there is a time stamp on it. If there is, it is validated. If there is no stamp, or it is illegible, reverse the ticket and insert it again. It really makes no difference how the ticket is inserted as long as it is stamped. If the ticket needs to be inserted a specific way, the time stamp will not work until inserted that way. This will not take more than a minute even if you try to have the ticket stamped four different ways. And of course, you should not go to the train station at the last minute. In Italy we had a problem getting the tickets stamped because half the machines were out of order.
Michael is offline  
Aug 27th, 2011, 07:47 PM
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Thanks for the responses, people.
330east is offline  
Aug 27th, 2011, 08:17 PM
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At one time, all of the validating machines where long rectangular posts mounted on the floor with a corner slit near the top into which your ticket was placed for validation. All of these were orange.

The newer machines are smaller and often simply wall mounted. These are yellow.

The only tickets which do not require validation are those which are non transferable nor non refundable such as PREMs or iDTGV tickets. Any other type of ticket must be validated. This is to preclude its being used more than once (as is possible on TER trains) or its being used and subsequently submitted for a refund.
Sarastro is offline  

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