Jess Indeed! (messyhair) wrote in bad_service,
Jess Indeed!
messyhair
bad_service

Inspired by a recent post re: transit systems.

NJ Transit is awesome!

(I guess I should clarify that I wasn't at home during this first exchange, or else, oh my god I would have looked it up on the website.

And since I'm sure there will be other smartasses...the TRACKS run by my house, but the two closest stations are at least 3 miles away in either direction.)

So, the other day I didn't have a bus schedule handy and needed to call customer service.

First, you have to go through an automated system. If you're taking a train, allegedly the automated system tells you when a train is coming. Except of course, even though it runs 24 hours right by my house, the Atlantic City line is never running according to the system. By the time I got through the system, I heard the train I wanted to catch go by, so I gave up on that and pressed zero for customer service.

...ten minutes later...

Transit Agent: GoodafternoonthankyouforcallingNewJerseyTransitmyagentnumberis12345howmayIhelpyou?
Me: Ye---
TA: HELLLLOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO? (she gave me all of a half a second to respond!!)
Me: Hello, I'm just wondering when the next 554 leaves from Berlin going to Atlantic City?
TA: *sigh* Hold ON...I have blahblahforty five and blahblah fifty.
Me: Okay, thanks a lot!
TA: Mm-HMMM. *click*

NJ Transit seriously has the WORST customer service. The agents are rude and more than once bus drivers have just driven past me as I waited at a stop.

NJ Transit also has two kinds of buses. On one kind of bus (usually the ones with more localized service or the ones that run more often), the drivers don't carry change and so you need exact. On the other, you get on, tell the driver where you're going, hand them your money, and if needed, they give you change. It's usually assumed the drivers have change, and if they don't, they'll give it to you when you get off because by then they usually have it...no big deal. Usually. So one night, it was about 3AM and I'd been visiting a friend who came up for a short visit. After waiting two hours for a cab (which is a bad_service story in itself), thirty minutes for a train, I had a headache and wanted to go to bed. I had a five dollar bill, my trip was $1.90. I don't think I was wrong in not getting change inside the train station, as it only dispenses annoying $1 coins, not to mention most drivers can change a $5. So I get on the bus...

Me: *holds out $5 bill* Berlin, please.
Driver: *looks at bill and then me with the nastiest look on her face* I don't have change for that!
Me: Okay, let me see if I have it. *sits down* (now, I was on my phone when the bus pulled up, but I had the courtesy of telling my boyfriend to hold on BEFORE I got on the bus, and resumed the call as I sat down to dig in my purse for change.) We depart, get maybe 1/4 of a mile up the road when the driver stops to let someone on.
D: *yells, even though I was only two seats behind her* DO YOU HAVE THE CHANGE???
Me: No...I'm about forty cents short.
D: Get off and get it, then! (we were stopped in front of a gas station)
Me: *tells bf she'll call him right back, gets off bus, gets change, gets back on and hands driver $2.*
D: *departs again* You SHOULD have gotten change at the train station!
Me: Well, aren't drivers SUPPOSED to carry change on these buses?
D: Uhm, NO, we ain't.
Me: Well, the sign just says you aren't required to carry change over $20 (meaning $20 bills, as in, the driver can change a $20 but not a $50, not that they carry only up to $20), didn't think $5 would be a hassle. And I have a Freedom Card for the Speedline, so I don't have a need for $1 coins.

Seriously...there was no need for her to talk to me like that. Usually I thank the driver and wish them a good day, but I just silently cursed her as I disembarked.
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