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Monday, October 3, 2016

Oh man... I've had so many bad experiences with collectors, here's hoping all this positivity rings true

6 comments:

G said...

It's a nice idea. However, TTC booth operators aren't really the first people to come to mind when I think of "multi-functional, highly skilled, and customer focused" agents. Hell, they're not even the hundredth people I'd think of. I've only had occasion to use a TTC both a few times but in each case the people were ornery and unhelpful. Not the sort of folks I want intercepting poor tourists just trying to find their way in the city.

Bicky said...

Don't ask them about PRESTO, they go bat-crap crazy!

C.J. Smith said...

Right? My last encounter at Museum station was a joke. Collector screaming at people to HAVE. EXACT. CHANGE. I'm looking at my $5 bill like fuck, guess I'm going nowhere. But bad knee said otherwise, so I stuffed the $5 into the archaic fare box and went through the gate.

Tal Hartsfeld said...

Those-in-charge are there to serve "the system", not the "wayward" customer.
The perfunctory "script" is all that matters.

Matt said...

Good idea. Let's take the most unpleasant, uncommunicative and unhappy people the TTC employs and set them loose in a busy subway station. That should really bolster the TTC's customer confidence ratings.

John Connelly said...

I generally go for the automated turnstiles if I can manage it just so I can avoid the collectors. I grew up in Kitchener. My uncle and I used to take the Greyhound to the CNE at the end of the summer most years. We'd see a few sites in Toronto while we were there. I distinctly recall one occasion when we got off at the wrong subway stop by mistake. It can be a bit confusing if you're from out of town. I was about 8 or 9. When we tried to re-enter the subway station to get back on, the collector put the lock on the turnstile so I banged into it. He glowered nastily through that partition, scrutinized our transfers, and treated us like we were fare jumpers running a scam. He kept demanding to know why we were trying to enter that station with that transfer. Again and again, my uncle explained that we were from out of town and had exited the station by mistake. We were standing there with tourist maps and CNE coupons. The collector kept shaking his head and started telling us to pay another fare. Finally, a passenger behind us reached forward and dropped three tokens into the box. The collector then yelled at him for getting involved before (ever so reluctantly) unlocking the turnstile. The good Samaritan apologized for the behaviour of the collector, assured us that not all Torontonians were like that, and offered to direct us to where we were going.

Last year, I went to a collector booth and asked to buy a roll of (50) tokens. This wasn't one of those periods before a fare increase. The station wasn't busy. The collector scowled like I'd asked him to juggle knives or something. He started pulling out rolls of tokens and counting them. Then he shook his head (without making eye contact) and refused to sell me one of his precious rolls because, he said, he was worried he'd run out of tokens before the end of his shift. He offered to sell me a maximum of 10 tokens (and said this like he was doing me a big favour). I ended up having to get cash from an ATM and feed $20s into the token machine until I had enough, and I ended up with a big pocketful of change along with the tokens.

I'm trying to picture some of these guys helping the public. Yikes.