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Charged in the metro ...

Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
629 posts
120 reviews
Charged in the metro ...

Greetings from Paris! When exiting the metro today on the Left Bank at Sevres Babylone to shop at Le Bon Marche we were stopped and asked for our metro ticket. Our understanding that you can throw your ticket away when exiting the train is incorrect. We mentioned this to one of the four metro guards stopping people demanding their tickets, and they said that you have to keep your ticket until out of the subway station. They further commented that my husband and I had to pay a charge, a fine. I commented that we should go down and check the garbage container on the metro platform: we did and retrieved our tickets … no charge. The guards were then most gracious. I commented that I was taken aback for we are tourists in Paris to support France and Paris in light of the terrorist events of the past 18 months. It seems because there are fewer tourists in Paris, there might be a kinder treatment of tourists who are misinformed. No response: do be aware to keep your ticket until you are out of the subway area. For Parisians on this forum: do the metro guards check tickets more at the end of a month to collect more funds/charges for that month? This business certainly surprised us as regular visitors to Paris for we are faithful metro users who do not violate the system.

Ventura, California
Level Contributor
733 posts
5 reviews
1. Re: Charged in the metro ...

I'm surprised that they allowed you to fish tickets from the trash-you did receive kindness from them in that regard, imho. Their job continues apace no matter if tourism is down a bit.

Paris, France
Level Contributor
18,085 posts
20 reviews
2. Re: Charged in the metro ...

IME the checks are random. And you are required to keep your ticket until you exit the metro - not exit the train. There will always be a turnstile, gate or door to leave the station through. Always a good idea to make yourself aware of the local rules when using public transportation.

Orlando, Florida
Level Contributor
6,092 posts
30 reviews
3. Re: Charged in the metro ...

On the contrary, I think that were very kind to you.

You could have fished anyone's used tickets out of the trash, no proof it was yours, and they still allowed you pass.

Montreal
Destination Expert
for Paris, Montreal
Level Contributor
19,565 posts
163 reviews
4. Re: Charged in the metro ...

what does exiting the train have to do with anything? You needed a ticket not just during the train ride but for the entire journey (as always noted). Anyhow, I am going to quote the even more astounding bit of rather nasty assumption that the French owe you:

"I commented that I was taken aback for we are tourists in Paris to support France and Paris in light of the terrorist events of the past 18 months. It seems because there are fewer tourists in Paris, there might be a kinder treatment of tourists who are misinformed."

they do not owe you anything, not special treatment or free rides on their public transport, not any big thank you for visiting their beautiful country. And when you use public transport anywhere it is your responsibility to be informed

Champlon, Belgium
Level Contributor
9,319 posts
5 reviews
5. Re: Charged in the metro ...

It isn't just until you have passed through the (final) exit gate that you have to keep your tickets, you should keep them until you have actually left the Metro/RER station. It would be unusual to be asked for tickets after the gate but it does happen occasionally, usually when they are targeting a particular perceived abuse (not tourists, by the way - tourists are no more, and no less, likely to be the subject of ticket inspections than other passengers making the same journeys).

Paris, France
Destination Expert
for Paris, Loire Valley
Level Contributor
24,465 posts
5 reviews
6. Re: Charged in the metro ...

I have seen the métro police give breaks to ticket violators from time to time but I think that in this case, they made a mistake.

Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
629 posts
120 reviews
7. Re: Charged in the metro ...

I don't understand why you make such a comment! I find it rather harsh for we have for decades used the Paris metro responsibly! We were given incorrect information which is my motivation for the email: to share our experience with others so they may not make the same mistake. When we searched the garbage, there were only two tickets ... those of my husband and myself. Is there not grace in this world for those of us who make mistakes unknowingly and then correct them?

I agree with several of the posts that mention one needs to know the system of each city and follow appropriately; that is true. Informing us that one needs to move away from the station before getting rid of one's ticket is helpful: thank you.

Illinois
Level Contributor
19,182 posts
16 reviews
8. Re: Charged in the metro ...

I think it was the way that you stated they should have given you a break because you were there to support Paris in the aftermath of the attacks. I don't see any reason why they should do so and to suggest it makes you sound like you're entitled to something you aren't.

I do think you were lucky they let you go back and get the tickets. I'm sure I've seen posts where they didn't do so.

I think this is a good reminder every so often, as people who aren't on the forum regularly or who haven't recently been following it may have not seen the previous posts. It would be a good thing to have in the top questions or as a sticky I think (although I admit I haven't looked to see if it's there somewhere).

I am surprised to hear that you have to keep your ticket after you are through the gates - surely you are allowed to be outside the gates without a ticket? I know I've walked into the entrance of London tube stations to check the local map when I was just walking by (can't remember doing so in Paris, however).

I have a pocket for used tickets and one for the current ticket and then I throw them all out at the end of the day. (If I'm not using a Navigo Decouverte, which I prefer.)

Calgary, Canada
Level Contributor
10,219 posts
5 reviews
9. Re: Charged in the metro ...

I'm surprised that being long time Paris visitor, you weren't aware that you have to keep the ticket until you're back up at street level; or that you haven't been caught sooner.

Illinois
Level Contributor
19,182 posts
16 reviews
10. Re: Charged in the metro ...

I've been to Paris several times and never had my ticket checked by an inspector. So it's definitely possible. (We'll see if that continues on my trip next month...)