We set off on Monday morning for a day trip to Schonbrunn Palace - a trip that was necessary to do by train. About ten stops away.
We have found that Austrian railway stations do not have humans in information booths for guidance but as this was not our first trip on a train, we managed to buy two tickets for the trip there and back.
Return tickets.....or so we thought ! We validated them as instructed before getting on the train.
The Palace is lovely with spectacular gardens. So we toured, wandered, took lots of photos
Until, worn out we headed for home.
Almost as soon as we arrived at the platform a train arrived. They seem to come along about every five minutes or so. On we hopped, very pleased to snag a couple of seats and off went the train.
Next thing a young ticket inspector came along the carriage and without any qualms Tony took out our tickets. He inspected them and the tickets of some other tourists and when the train stopped at the next station, we were all ordered off the train!!
Then ensued a heated debate as to the validity of our tickets ( they cost us 5.60 euros total ).
Nothing wrong with the tickets but they should have been validated AGAIN AT THE OTHER END OF THE TICKET !
He threatened to haul us off to the police station, demanded our passports, and fined us 103 euro on the spot!
Several groups of tourists were undergoing the same treatment in several different languages around us.
The upshot was that we paid the 103 euro ( should have been 103 euros each but they were being generous !) then were sent upstairs to validate the tickets before we caught the next train home.
Apparently this is quite a common occurrence on this train line in Vienna . They say they have zero tolerance and this is the Austrian way. So even if you are a tourist, have a ticket and slip up thinking validation once on a ticket is enough, zero tolerance !
Tony is still frothing about it !