Chances of using a TVM and having problems?

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gray1404

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I am really concerned about the number of stories I have read on the forum of people using TVMs either to buy tickets or collect ones they have purchased and having problems.

I wondered if we could have a compact thread covering here: -
1. the different type of TVMs.
2. the ones that a the most reliable and the ones that arn't
3. how to avoid having a problem in terms of steps that can be taken to avoid such
4. what to do if you do have a problem?
5. what are the most common problems encountered by people

One final question, is a customer able to avoid a TVM altogether and insist of having their TOD printed at a ticket office or does this depend on that station.
 
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najaB

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One final question, is a customer able to avoid a TVM altogether and insist of having their TOD printed at a ticket office or does this depend on that station.
Depends on the ticket office.
 

Master29

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From what I`ve seen on here most of the problems with TVM`s are down to human carelessness so good luck with that one.
 

gray1404

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I thought it was things like them failing to print and spit out tickets or them [tickets] getting caught inside.
 
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185

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From what I`ve seen on here most of the problems with TVM`s are down to human carelessness so good luck with that one.

There will always be amongst passengers, the daft 5% who are in too much of a rush to collect all their tickets. But from the perspective of someone working with 250 Scheidt & Bach machines, who often ends up running around sorting out their problems, I'd say this thread certainly warrants some merit.
 

Merseysider

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I thought it was thinks that them failing to print and spit out tickets or them getting caught inside.
Please could you rephrase that? The thread may be worthy of discussion but I'm not quite sure what you mean by "I thought it was thinks that them".
 

Flying Snail

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I would say the most important thing is to check carefully all your tickets before relinquishing the TVM to another passenger.

The default position seems to be that the machines don't make mistakes, the stupid punters do and even if the machines do have a fault they will faithfully log and report it.

I have no doubt that most problems are down to people not collecting all their tickets (although as it is such a common issue I would say the design of the machines is a big part of that) but there are cases of failures to dispense, failures to print, badly printed tickets and failures of the machine to log all of these as faults.

The most common response to a passenger claiming they didn't get all of their tickets is often an accusation that they did something wrong and the next person has probably walked off with them so nothing can be done.

In light of this if after checking the tickets dispensed and finding one or more missing the only way to disprove the standard response is to prevent any further transactions taking place on the machine until a member of staff has checked it.
 

gray1404

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Please could you rephrase that? The thread may be worthy of discussion but I'm not quite sure what you mean by "I thought it was thinks that them".

I thought it was things like them failing to print and spit out tickets or them [tickets] getting caught inside.
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
I had a strange situation a one of the new Virgin TVMs at Liverpool Lime Street last week. I was collecting 2 Advance tickets and each had a different collection code so I had to collect them one at a time. Each consisted of: 1 x ticket, 3 x reservations and 1 x collection receipt. The first one printed out in the normal time. I reinserted my card and entered the second collection number. This took a lot longer and I had two additional tickets come out. Both of these had VOID printed on them. Once I had sorted through the rest though, all of my tickets etc were there so no problems but what is this again getting tickets with VOID on them?
 

crehld

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It's happened to me a couple of times. On one occasion someone came to the machine, opened it up and fished out the ticket which had printed but not deposited in the hopper. On the other occasion I had to hand over the one half of the outward/return ticket that had printed to the ticket office, who then promptly issued a new ticket free of change. Staff on both occasions remarked that it happens all the time.
 

najaB

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Staff on both occasions remarked that it happens all the time.
I'm not disputing that it happens, but I wouldn't put *too* much stock on a customer-facing person saying 'Happens all the time.." It's a classic disarming phrase.
 

185

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The new Virgin ATOS machines are great - they have a lock-door function which only releases after printing... it's good. But one problem gone, another one is created, I hear. The door locks, then a ticket that's not cut correctly drops after it's re-locked - although it's rare, as they are brand new - perhaps that will become worse over time? :P
 

Hadders

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I think we need to put this into perspective.

Millions of tickets get collected from TVMs without incident. We hear of a handful on here when something has gone wrong.
 

crehld

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I think we need to put this into perspective.

Millions of tickets get collected from TVMs without incident. We hear of a handful on here when something has gone wrong.

Indeed millions of tickets are collected without incident.

But I see nothing wrong with drawing attention to errors in the system that do exist, however rare they are.
 

njr001

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I've collected tickets on numerous occasions from TVM's without a problem until last week, I tried to collect some tickets booked online with Great Western at Marylebone and only the return leg tickets were printed. I knew instantly that I did not have all the tickets (see thread I then had to spend a considerable amount of time on the phone and then finally going to Paddington where the remaining tickets were printed, luckily I was not travelling that day.

To Know preciously how to proceed under such circumstances would be very useful.
 
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Flying Snail

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I think we need to put this into perspective.

Millions of tickets get collected from TVMs without incident. We hear of a handful on here when something has gone wrong.

Unless this board has become the official collator of all TVM failures then those facts have nothing to do with each other.

We can guess at how many transactions take place but we have no idea how many failures. We don't even have a 100% reporting record of failures affecting RUK forum members.
 

Haywain

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To give a bit of perspective, at a station with 20 TVMs, print failures (ie: tickets not printed) would tend to be very rare and would result from either printer error or running out of ticket stock, and the latter should not happen normally. In fact, many TVMs (albeit a reducing number) have two printers which allows for redundancy. Dispense failure can happen in some machines where chutes get the ticket from the printer to the hopper, but tend to be very rare and usually affect multiple customers at the same time and are thus brought to the attention of staff very quickly. Failure by the customer to pick up tickets is more common and difficult to quantify because I suspect that most are picked up by the next customer and ditched as it is impossible to know (for the average customer) whether or not they are used. The number found by or handed to staff is in single figures in a typical day, but the total number of transactions across the machines at that one station might be in excess of 10,000. For the staff member who sees one of these on most of their shifts this "happens all the time", but the reality is that it is actually a tiny proportion of transactions.

That is not to say that nothing should be done and diligent staff will make every effort to ensure machines are well stocked and suitably cleaned that problems do not occur, and that customers do not suffer. However, I am not sure that the proposed thread would be truly useful.
 
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