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Metro scam?

Chester UK
Level Contributor
29 posts
3 reviews
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Metro scam?

Just had friends return from an enjoyable stay in Budapest who decided to use the Metro system in the City.

Purchased tickets to their destination and on the return journey they went to the machine that stamps the ticket but wasn't working and at their destination there was an inspector who promptly fined them ��8 (each?) no English no discussion.

It would have been cheaper to use a taxi and when they spoke to other visitors some had had the same unsatisfactory experience. Incompetance................... or scam ?

DKB
Luton, UK
Level Contributor
10 posts
14 reviews
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1. Re: Metro scam?

I'd say not a scam. I was just there for 3 days and purchased a 72 hour Budapest Card, which includes free travel on Budapest public transport. I was asked twice to see my ticket, produced the card and went on my merry way. When in a city where I don't speak the language I always go for the easy travelcard option to avoid the problems that you've mentioned.

Their tickets weren't valid as they didn't stamp them (regardless of the machines working or not) and accordingly they were due a fine. Had they been able to speak Magyar maybe they could have explained their situation and got out of it.

While hotel/restaurant/museum workers often speak excellent English when travelling on the continent, it seems Police/Border guards/civil servants generally don't and if they have a natural inclination to catching law breakers and fining people (as their job remit does) then the language barrier provides an easy way out of listening to any excuses people come up with.