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  • FIRST POST
    • MSE Kelvin
    • By MSE Kelvin 30th Jul 19, 4:49 PM
    • 80Posts
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    MSE Kelvin
    Money Moral Dilemma: Someone forgot to take their train ticket - should I use it?
    • #1
    • 30th Jul 19, 4:49 PM
    Money Moral Dilemma: Someone forgot to take their train ticket - should I use it? 30th Jul 19 at 4:49 PM
    This week's MoneySaver who wants advice asks...

    When I was buying my train ticket, I found someone had accidentally left theirs in the machine. The timestamp showed it was printed a good 20 minutes earlier, so it seemed unlikely they were coming back for it. As the ticket's still valid, would it be wrong to use it and save a bit of cash?

    Unfortunately the MSE team can't always answer money moral dilemma questions as contributions are often emailed in or suggested in person. They are intended to be enjoyed as a point of debate and discussed at face value.

    If you haven’t already, join the forum to reply!

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Page 2
    • Mark Stephens
    • By Mark Stephens 31st Jul 19, 2:37 PM
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    Mark Stephens
    An easy one
    Easy to answer The ticket is a contract between the purchaser or the person for whom the ticket was purchased and the railway company If the ticket/contract is 'found' it is not valid, simple. Any person attempting to use the ticket is committing fraud, knowingly using and attempting to evade paying the correct fare. They are committing a criminal offence. The same applies to people using or attempting to use 'return portions' of such tickets even if it had been given to them
    • oshanter
    • By oshanter 31st Jul 19, 3:36 PM
    • 2 Posts
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    oshanter
    There is no moral dilema here. Ask yourself the question, what is the cost of my integrity. If the unfortunate person had left their wallet/purse would you have used it?
    • klew356
    • By klew356 31st Jul 19, 4:18 PM
    • 631 Posts
    • 2,955 Thanks
    klew356
    its fair game, if its imminent as someone said then i would use it, if it was booked in advance id consider handing it in, this kind of thing will happen all the time - its like finding a tenner in the street - keep it!
    • frankmadforit
    • By frankmadforit 31st Jul 19, 6:13 PM
    • 3 Posts
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    frankmadforit
    no hand it back in
    Best bet is to hand it in .If the ticket has paid by credit/debit card then that can be asked to be seen when showing the train ticket.It does seem like "oh i got a free ticket as such", but if that person comes back ,the cctv can easily be checked .So it is always best to hand it back in.All train tickets have numbers on them as well .
    • frankmadforit
    • By frankmadforit 31st Jul 19, 6:15 PM
    • 3 Posts
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    frankmadforit
    advance tickets easily tracked
    If you found an advance ticket ,then its best to hand it back in .They can easily find who bought it and all their details and if it was paid by credit/debit card then that card can be asked for when the conductor checks tickets.
    • frankmadforit
    • By frankmadforit 31st Jul 19, 6:18 PM
    • 3 Posts
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    frankmadforit
    remains property of the train company
    yes it is fraud and well pointed out and the train tickets remain the property of the train companies .Even people who sell theirs on eBay are breaking the law as well as they would not be valid to use.Good points
    • glider3560
    • By glider3560 31st Jul 19, 6:57 PM
    • 3,874 Posts
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    glider3560
    If the ticket has paid by credit/debit card then that can be asked to be seen when showing the train ticket
    Originally posted by frankmadforit
    You're just making that up. There is nothing in law or the National Rail Conditions of Travel requiring the credit/debit card to be shown when presenting a physical ticket (some e-tickets may have this requirement).

    Additionally, tickets don't show the card number so it could never be validated without checking the back office systems.

    And what about people whose employers buy tickets with corporate cards?

    • glider3560
    • By glider3560 31st Jul 19, 7:00 PM
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    glider3560
    If you found an advance ticket ,then its best to hand it back in .They can easily find who bought it and all their details
    Originally posted by frankmadforit
    Easier said than done. There is no central database of who bought what ticket. You'd have to lookup the selling train company or travel agent, then contact them. They wouldn't be able to provide the details due to GDPR.

    And if the ticket were bought at a station, then there's no record of who bought it.

    • AndyFras
    • By AndyFras 1st Aug 19, 2:14 PM
    • 1 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    AndyFras
    Last year, my husband and I arrived at Manchester Piccadilly station to collect our tickets from the machine. We were in a rush so grabbed the tickets and fled for our train. As we boarded the train for Edinburgh, I noticed that the return tickets were missing. Obviously, there must have been a pause between the outward bound and inward ones being printed. If the next person to use the machine had handed the tickets in to the office, we wouldn’t have had to pay again to come home. Sadly, nobody did.
    • crmism
    • By crmism 1st Aug 19, 9:41 PM
    • 178 Posts
    • 94 Thanks
    crmism
    Train ticket
    How could the person who bought the train ticket prove it was theirs, if they came up to you and tried to claim it?

    Go ahead. Use it!
    • glider3560
    • By glider3560 1st Aug 19, 9:49 PM
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    glider3560
    Last year, my husband and I arrived at Manchester Piccadilly station to collect our tickets from the machine. We were in a rush so grabbed the tickets and fled for our train. As we boarded the train for Edinburgh, I noticed that the return tickets were missing. Obviously, there must have been a pause between the outward bound and inward ones being printed. If the next person to use the machine had handed the tickets in to the office, we wouldn’t have had to pay again to come home. Sadly, nobody did.
    Originally posted by AndyFras
    You have too much faith in ticket offices.

    There's no way of getting a ticket reprinted elsewhere (there is a procedure, but it is only supposed to be used in exceptional cases where a passenger is stranded without money, e.g. after being robbed, and someone buys a ticket for them elsewhere). You would've had to returned to Manchester to collect the ticket.

    And you'd have no way of knowing the ticket had been handed in without returning in person. Most ticket offices don't hold phone numbers for other offices from their own company, let alone phone numbers for offices operated by other train companies.

    • Dunebug6
    • By Dunebug6 2nd Aug 19, 9:23 AM
    • 1 Posts
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    Dunebug6
    I think a few in here are missing something important, asking what is moral has nothing to do with the legality of it.

    Technically in the company's contract it says tickets aren't transferable whether for parking or for train tickets. But, it's pretty much an unenforceable rule, for most parking lots, you don't enter your registration to go with your ticket and there's nothing that identifies you on it, same with train / tram tickets unless you do it online or through a railcard.
    You could (and I don't know if this has been changed since uncovering this) kill a Scotsman in York as long as it was with a crossbow (or longbow, one of the two) and it'd be technically legal, but would that make it moral? Of course not.
    Someone has paid for the ticket and it would only go to waste otherwise, you're not being moral by giving a company free money by letting the ticket go unused, no one will ever find out, if it's been 20 minutes, no one is coming back for that ticket, this is being efficient.
    To those bringing up "you wouldn't do this with someone's wallet" there's a key difference in that the money in your wallet / purse doesn't have a time limit on it, someone can come back to it at any time and use that wallet, while that ticket will be out of date once the train has left.
    • Money maker
    • By Money maker 2nd Aug 19, 9:26 AM
    • 5,221 Posts
    • 11,850 Thanks
    Money maker
    Wow, that dilemma pulled in an awful lot of newbies ...
    Please do not quote spam as this enables it to 'live on' once the spam post is removed.

    If you quote me, don't forget the capital 'M'

    Declutterers of the world - unite!
    • Cisco001
    • By Cisco001 2nd Aug 19, 10:47 AM
    • 3,304 Posts
    • 1,422 Thanks
    Cisco001
    No.

    If you go to the machine and buy ticket straight away, I would assume you are taking a short journey, probably cost less than £10.

    If it is a longer journey, you probably would have pre-booked it before heading to station. (We are moneysaver!!)

    Ask yourself, would you want to save £10 and get yourself into trouble.
    I would definitely say no.
    • Cisco001
    • By Cisco001 2nd Aug 19, 10:52 AM
    • 3,304 Posts
    • 1,422 Thanks
    Cisco001
    Last year, my husband and I arrived at Manchester Piccadilly station to collect our tickets from the machine. We were in a rush so grabbed the tickets and fled for our train. As we boarded the train for Edinburgh, I noticed that the return tickets were missing. Obviously, there must have been a pause between the outward bound and inward ones being printed. If the next person to use the machine had handed the tickets in to the office, we wouldn’t have had to pay again to come home. Sadly, nobody did.
    Originally posted by AndyFras
    There is mobile ticket/ eticket now. You no longer require to collect the ticket in station
    • glider3560
    • By glider3560 2nd Aug 19, 6:32 PM
    • 3,874 Posts
    • 2,540 Thanks
    glider3560
    There is mobile ticket/ eticket now. You no longer require to collect the ticket in station
    Originally posted by Cisco001
    Only on some routes, with some operators and only if you book through certain websites.

    They are also less flexible than paper tickets and require additional ID to be shown alongside the ticket.

    • gloriouslyhappy
    • By gloriouslyhappy 4th Aug 19, 8:57 PM
    • 430 Posts
    • 875 Thanks
    gloriouslyhappy
    No.

    If you go to the machine and buy ticket straight away, I would assume you are taking a short journey, probably cost less than £10.

    If it is a longer journey, you probably would have pre-booked it before heading to station. (We are moneysaver!!)

    Ask yourself, would you want to save £10 and get yourself into trouble.
    I would definitely say no.
    Originally posted by Cisco001
    The machines are also used to print pre-purchased tickets so your assumption might be wrong. I do this all the time, you have to nominate the station where you're going to collect them, then go to the machine, insert credit card and ticket ref, and the machine spits out the tickets. Very useful when buying tickets for other people eg family members who won't be travelling with you making e-tickets impractical.
    • Ergates
    • By Ergates 6th Aug 19, 1:34 PM
    • 676 Posts
    • 919 Thanks
    Ergates
    fair game for me!



    as someone said it's money saving expert!



    do you really think the police are gonna come after you for a ticket. when much bigger things like house break ins or cars being nicked get NFA'd!



    see it as a nice lil life bonus!
    Originally posted by db2016
    So, it's OK to steal if you can get away with it? That's an interesting perspective.
    • jbkmum
    • By jbkmum 6th Aug 19, 2:18 PM
    • 153 Posts
    • 301 Thanks
    jbkmum
    Easier said than done. There is no central database of who bought what ticket. You'd have to lookup the selling train company or travel agent, then contact them. They wouldn't be able to provide the details due to GDPR.

    And if the ticket were bought at a station, then there's no record of who bought it.
    Originally posted by glider3560
    Yes and no.

    There is a central database, it retains card numbers used to purchase and collect tickets for a period of 6 months. TVMs are not operated by the TOC, they are operated by RDG
    • Throwaway1
    • By Throwaway1 6th Aug 19, 3:50 PM
    • 440 Posts
    • 767 Thanks
    Throwaway1
    In the past i have bought the wrong ticket and left it in the machine for someone to pick up.

    I often do this with parking as well. Pay for day, and provided it isnt linked to my car reg, I either hand it to someone at a machine or leave in or stuck to the machine.
    Originally posted by SultanPepper

    This is what I was here to say. I've bought the wrong ticket/something came up immediately after buying and I've just left it in/stuck to the machine for someone else to use. If I saw one, I'd instantly think that is what has happened. I always pass on my parking ticket too if there is any time left on it. Probably shouldn't do it but it always makes my day when someone gives me theirs and it looks like I make other people's when I give them mine too.
    Make £2019 in 2019: £820/£2019
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