This week I had an unpleasant experience this week. I went into London on Wednesday (that was fun) for a dance workshop (though, no dancing... it was all talking about how to improve the musicality of our dancing. Sometimes to get better at dancing, you have to step off the dance floor.) When I got home -- roughly 1.00 in the morning -- I discovered a parking ticket on my car. Oh, I was livid. How dare they accuse me of stealing from their company? Because, that is what they have done. By ticketing my car for not paying the daily charge, they have done the equivalent of accusing me of walking out of a shop without paying for the merchandise! I have never in my life stolen anything, including time in a carpark. And what really made me angry was, when I arrived at the carpark, I parked in a bay that was 2 down from where the attendant was checking payments. In other words, he saw me arrive, and knew I had been there less than 5 minutes. The second thing I did was stop at the payment station. And that was directly in front of the attendant. So again, he knew I was not dodging the fee. Now, on his side, I did not have a payment slip displayed in the windscreen of my car. Why? Because I payed electronically over my phone. This is not a new thing they've just started. It's been around for a couple years now. You can phone in your details and pay the fee off your credit card. Your car reg then gets sent to the database, and the attendant scans your reg, and sees that the fee has been paid. Now, this process takes a couple minutes to complete. However, the ticket the attendant issued was dated 3 minutes after the text was sent to my phone saying that the payment had been completed. That ought to have been sufficent for the transaction to appear in the database. And in anycase, the attendant saw me phone it in! Idiot.
I sent a letter of complaint (allong with the proof that they had unjustly inflicted a £50 penalty fee) requesting that they improve their staff training, appologise to me, and pay me the £50 that they tried to extract from me. (I don't really expect to receive the £50, but it gives me room to bargon with to get the postage I had to pay to send the proof of having been wrongly accused via registard post. £10.50! For the cheap rate!!)