My daughter has an ACTION student pass that cannot be used due to the ticket machine having issues with reading the magnetic strip. The bus driver told her that she would have to pay the fare or walk to school as her ticket is now invalid. What he failed to consider was that her pass was valid every other day this term when she traveled on that service and the problem with the ticket was caused by the ticket machine on the bus, not by her. Luckily her friend had some money to buy a ticket otherwise she would have been stranded.
I contacted ACTION customer service who informed me that sometimes the magnetic strips fail when the weather warms up. This response was a total cop out as we had the same problem with another student pass last term in the middle of winter. I didn’t worry too much about the previous pass as it failed on the second last day of school so my daughter just paid $3.80 cash on these days.
ACTION informed me that I have to take the pass to their depot for replacement and that there will be no refund for the bus fares I was forced to pay. I have to take time off work and travel a 26km round trip, during their office hours of 8.30am to 4.30pm weekdays, to obtain a new pass as they don’t deal with kids. So far their faulty ticket machines have cost me $7.60 in term 2, $7.60 for Monday and Tuesday this week, plus the time I will be docked when not at work to get the pass replaced. All of this stuffing around for a $65.00 bus pass hardly seems worth the effort, especially when I need to make sure that my daughter carries cash in case the new ticket is rendered invalid by the dodgy, double dipping system in place on these buses.
I was not even offered an apology by any of the ACTION staff I dealt with, instead the problem was turned around by blaming my daughter for misusing the pass. I did inform the arrogant staff member at the depot that the pass is kept in the plastic sleeve provided and had never been bent or tampered with. He replied in a flippant manner that the kids use black textas to colour in the bar codes which stuffs up our system. He didn’t even bother to look at her pass to see that it was still in perfect condition.
Come on ACTION, lift your game. Why bother wasting tens of thousands on TV and radio advertising to attract new patronage? Why don’t you look after the customers you already have by taking ownership of the problem with your ticket machines?