The Easy Button Doesn’t Exist in China

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I have been on trains before in China and I always kept track of my ticket. However my last trip well, I was careless. At least it broke a writer’s block and I have something useful and informative to post.

I just got back from my vacation. I totally needed some R&R, the summer has been very busy. I went to Wuhan to see my boyfriend( more about that in another post) I was very excited and nervous so when I got my tickets from the ticket window, I slipped them in my passport. Well there was a pushy gentleman behind me and I wanted to get out quickly.

I always put my train tickets in my wallet. I tend boarded the train and used my ticket to Wuhan. 5 hours later I arrived in Wuhan and reunited with my boyfriend. We ate and the I went to my hotel.

I handed the clerk my passport so I could register into the hotel. That is the moment that I believe the chaos began. My boyfriend took me to my room. I was so exhausted that I showered and went straight to bed.

The next morning I decided that , I needed to place my return ticket in my wallet, it was a much safer place. Well much to my amazement , the train ticket was missing. I called my boyfriend and he called the hotel have them check downstairs. There was no ticket. After my Lucky finished work he came to the hotel and the staff looked around again.

Leon called the train station to explain the situation and got the procedures. Guess what it was a lengthy process. There is no such thing as an easy button in Chinese . The Chinese tend to take simple things and make things complicated. It involves bureaucracy and of course a stamp!!!
Step One: Buy a new ticket at the Wuhan train station. They will only print a new ticket if you buy another ticket at full price. Luckily I had a picture of my original ticket( I post my life on social media apps) so I got to keep the same seat. It was a window seat, which are highly coveted in China. Wuhan station could not reimburse my ticket that could only be done in Hangzhou. The new ticket indicated that it was a replacement ticket, Easy button version would be an extra fee for printing up a lost ticket.

Step Two: Find someone wearing a uniform on the train and show them the message that my boyfriend saved on my phone because his silly laowei girlfriend lost her ticket.

Step Three: Find the train boss. In China each train has a manager or 老板. Luckily, the helpful stewardess (is that what they are called on trains?) The boss checked my passport and wrote a receipt and a note and told me to find him 10 minutes before we reached Hangzhou.

Step Four: Search for the train boss. He was in the dining car. He stamped and signed the receipt and took my ticket. He handed me off to someone at Hangzhou train. She also signed the receipt and took me downstairs.

 

 

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Step Five: Go to the ticket window. I can only go to the north ticket window because they are the only ones that deal with foreigners. The line was super long and it was crowded. The line jumpers were in full force today. I thwarted one line jumper from skipping me. I blocked him off. I gave my receipt , passport and ticket to the girl at the ticket counter.

Step Six: Wait for the girl to call her superiors. This had to get explained to someone else over the phone. It took about 10 minutes.

Step Seven: Get my Refund !!!! That was a lot to do for a 300 kuai refund. The girl kept my ticket and the receipts.

The moral of this story, is never never never ever ever lose any kind of ticket in China.