Welcome to another episode of London Public Transportation aka the Daily Nightmare….
A while ago I wanted to buy a ticket for 5 days on which I knew I would just travel between Battersea Park Station and Victoria Station twice a day. Thus, I thought that a 7 day pass might be more expensive than just topping up my Oyster card with money. But since I was not sure how much a single trip would cost with the overground, I decided to get some help from the counter in Battersea Park Station. He checked everything in his computer and told me that I should buy the 7 day ticket which costs 17.80. That is what I did at the ticket machine then and went to work.
In the evening, when I wanted to go back, unfortunately my ticket did not work so I went to the guys working at Victoria Station asking them to let me through the gates. After checking they told me that I do not have a valid ticket on my Oyster. Even showing them the receipt of my purchase in the morning did not help and I was sent to the usual ticket office. There, people were not able to help me either. They checked my Oyster again and came up with the wonderful explanation that there is no such thing as a 7 day ticket… So it is my fault then that the ticket machine is obviously selling tickets that do not exist????? I was trying to proof it with my receipt but the guy behind the counter was not at all interested in that and just persisted on his opinion that this ticket does not exist. So I asked him what to do and he told me that I would have to go back to Battersea Park Station to exchange my ticket there because even though he works for the same train company, he was not able to refund me! (I can be glad that I did not buy this ticket somewhere in Eastern London…)
Not able to use the train to go there I decided to give the bus a try because I did not really believe in the idea that the machine was selling tickets that do not exist. Sometimes these machines appear a bit more intelligent than the people working behind the counters… And, what a surprise, my ticket worked without problems on the bus. Once I was back in Battersea, I realised that the ticket counter has already been closed and thus, I had to wait for the next morning to get a refund for my ticket.
The next morning I arrived at the station at 8.30 in the morning only to find out that the ticket counter was closed with a sign saying “we are busy fulfilling our other commitments at the station and will reopen the counter in 30 minutes” – Seriously? At 8.30 in the morning? During rush hour??? When many people would like to buy a ticket? That is when they decide to close the counter???? I could not believe it but I had no other chance than to take the bus again to go to work.
I was so disappointed from the service and so exhausted from all of this that, in the end, I did not care anymore! For the next 3 days, every morning and every evening, I took the bus to go to work and back which took me 45 minutes each way… Thank god I had a good book with me!
What annoys me the most is that this systems always seems to fail but still London public transportation thinks that it can charge everyone the most ridiculous prices. You do not even get the worst service in the whole world but you also pay the highest prices!!!! How is that justified???