Tuesday, 2 June 2009

Tourists beware! Bring lots of loose change.

No, not for beggars or muggers (you’ll need the paper stuff here), but for Dublin Bus (in which case you won’t).

As someone who tries to avoid the bus whenever possible, I didn’t know this. Don’t get me wrong, I use public transport every working day – the train being the preferred option. But I consider a seven-mile walk from town to Blanchardstown preferable to the Hell-on-wheels that is the number 39. Try it one night, and you will understand what I mean.

But never mind all that. I knew that Dublin Bus did not give change, but I didn’t know that they don't accept notes either. A letter in today’s Irish Times tells the tale of someone who took a bunch of excited kids on the bus for an outing, and proffered the correct fare to the driver. Correct or not, they had to leave the bus because Dublin Bus does not accept paper money.

But the thing is, what if you are a tourist? I had a quick search and came across a story on Boards where someone’s heart sank as they noted that the cluster of Spanish tourists in front of them were grasping €5 notes in their hands. Not their fault, how were they to know they’d be turfed off the bus in view of a queue of disgruntled commuters? Welcome to Ireland.

But to be honest, I wonder why they bother.

Back to Gombeen Nation main page


Harald75 said...

Hi GM, good to see you back.

Maybe we will all need (big) notes to enter the bus after Cowens next budget ;-)

lew said...

That has to be one of the most stupid things I've ever heard.
Ireland should be doing everything to encourage tourists

Unless I'm totally deranged I would say the idea of not being able to use notes on a bus will just drive people away, stop them telling their friends to visit and so on.

I actually had no idea Dublin bus didn't give change but to not take notes as well, isnt that just a quick way to make the company go bust due to lack of customers?

unless I'm not actually living in the real world and my ideas are stupid

The Gombeen Man said...

You're in the real world alright, Lew. Yes, it's incredible isn't it? I've got an annual pass through work, so on the occasions I take the bus I just flash that, so I didn't know about this either. No doubt they'll cite "security reasons" or something. But I've never witnessed this in any other country!

How did the weekend back "home" go?

Anonymous said...

Glad to see my letter to them almost ten years ago would have been put to better use had I just shoved it instead of wasting a stamp sending it all the way from Tas. On the bright side thoough - it is just possible that I got the chance to meet Ronnie Delaney in his retirement job on the buses. Anyway - this is what happened -I got the airport bus from O'Connell Street along with a whole bunch of others leaving the country. Fare - 4.50 Euro so I offered my five Euro note, just like all the others did and the driver told us he'd "fix us up" with our change at the airport. By the time we got there, yer man behind the wheel had collected a fair bit of change so no probs about the change - I thought. Not that I cared really but you know it's the honesty thing. Oh yeah the Ronnie Delaney meeting - well I never saw anyone off a bus as quickly as this athlete and the style of hislsprint for the building invoked memories of the great man's win in 56 in Melbourne. Despite me staying on board ... and staying and staying until another driver showed up to take the bus back to pick up the next bunch of suckers - I left the land of a hundred thousand welcomes fifty cents worse off. GM - I'M not a tightarse (as you know I have offered to buy you rakes of beer if you ever make it down here) but that 50 cents should have left Ireland with me. I drank extra G&T's on the flight in an attempt to get over it on board to get over it. It didn't work, I'm still annoyed. BTW If it wasn't Ronnie - can you apologise for me and if it was- RONNIE CAN YOU SEND THE MONEY TO GM TO HELP OFFSET HIS French speeding ticket. Welcome back GM - Ponyboy

Anonymous said...

ola gm , sometime in the late eighties or early 90s on arrival in london as usual ipicked up some sterling ,when i arrived in dub ijumped on the bus tendered strl for the fare the condutor gurrier gave me along lecture i was nhaw in oirland that munney was no gud over here a womaqn told him to go on with himself paid my fare took my sterlingin exchange for some crazy reason the irish punt was worth afew pennies more in ex markets just shows how distorted makets become ,irish money worth more than sterling / ahahahahahahahhahaahhaahahahahahaaaaaaa\a great source of pride at the time it was taken so seriously kinda like the recent real estate market, all sooooooh kindergarten, little wonder ireland has such a wretched history too many ASSHOLES live there ADOIS AMIGO

The Gombeen Man said...

Great story, Ponyboy. And if those G&Ts didn't work, it must have been bad. You know, we really are one of the great underachievers at the Olympics, all considered.

Great idea re the Gombeen Man Speeding Ticket Fund. But let's not just restrict it to Ronnie. I'm going to get into the spirit of our public representatives and invite all readers of the blog to let their money rest in my account for a while. I'll mind it all for you!

And yes Mr BH, kindergarten stuff it was alright. Lots of chests puffing out with national pride! And it didn't even last as long as the property bubble did. Probably a couple of weeks. Talking about being desperate to get one over on the Brits, I remember when I was a nipper there was a song about a greyhound - I kid you not - who won a race or something, defeating the canine Saxon foe into the bargain. Think it was called "Master McGrath". Jasus!!!!

Hope all is well in Marbella? Maybe catch you for a Sangria the next time!