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Thread: Beware of Ataf

  1. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Posts
    2

    Angry

    We also had a very bad experience last week in Florence, when we went there to watch a football game. When we arrived at Florence Mainstation we watched out for Bus Line Nr. 11 to drive to our hotel. My friend and me saw the bus at the bus station and jumped in. The doors closed directly behind us and we took a look back outside to see, where our three fellows travelling with us were. They didn´t managed it to get in the bus and the bus drove on. I talked to my friend what to do now (driving on without our friends or hopp off on the next station). My friend said that at first we should buy a bus ticket. I told him that we can do that at the driver. Exactly in the same moment a man stepped beside us and asked for our bus tickets. He showed us an ID card and something like a sheriff star, like in a western movie or from a carnival shop. We told him that we want to buy it at the driver. But he said, that this is not possible and he wants to see our documents. He was very aggressive and rude, shouting out, that he will call the police an we will get arrested, if wo don´t show him our documents. I told him, that he should please call the police, I won´t do anything without police. He took out his mobile and began to make a call.

    We went off the next stop (after perhaps 150 meters at Piazza della Stazione) with these three „ticket-inspectors“, they where meanwhile. We got a lot of loud and hectic discussions and they always repeated, that it´s not possible to buy a ticket onboard a bus in Italy (which is a lie, I did it on two more trips at the same day for 2,00 € at the driver). Finally we gave them our ID card and they began to write something like a fine ticket on an official looking pad of paper. I told them, that I will not pay or do anything without the police. When they where finished, they gave us back our ID cards and wanted my friend to sign on his fine ticket. He said, that he won´t sign anything he doesn´t understand because all was written in italian. At this moment, they packed in all there staff, said something like „ok, your problem“, one inspector showed something about 240 € fine at the back of he papers. They jumped into the next bus standing an the Piazza della Stazione and drove away. End of action…

    What will happen now? We didn´t sign anything, we got no copy of our fine ticket and police didn´t came, because we waited a few minutes at the Piazza della Stazione thinking about what to do now. I´m still not sure, if they were real ticket-inspectors. This sheriff-star looked quite strange and on their ID card there was only a photo and a long number, but no badges or signs of ATAF. They also had no official ATAF clothes. I saw them a few hours later at the cathedral and took a picture of them. Sadly only one of them is good to see…

    It was disgusting how they threatend us. They made a big scene and weren´t friendly at all. I asked them, if this is the way they welcome tourists in their city, being so annoying and not helping people at all. For me it seemed like a tourist ripp-off. They only talked to us at the bus, not to any locals. And from the moment we entered the bus until the „inspectors“ came to us, it took not longer than 10 seconds (seriously!).
    Last edited by Stindl; February 28, 2017 at 02:32 AM.

  2. #12
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    1,347

    Default Ataf

    Buongiorno,

    I can not guarantee, but if they didn't give you anything then it sounds as if it wasn't a ticket. However, as far as their clothing go - normally they DO NOT dress officially - so that they can catch the evaders unprepared. What type of ID did you show them? Something with an address??

    Unfortunately not all buses will allow you to purchase a ticket on board. They "should" be prepared, but now that you can purchase a ticket through your phone with a text message many are not prepared to sell paper tickets. (Send a text message that says "ATAF" to phone numbre 4880105 ... however I believe this will only work if you have an Italian number).

    Buon Viaggio,

    Donna Denise

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Posts
    2

    Default

    Hello Donna Denise,

    thank you for your answer. We showed them our german personal ID´s, where also the adress is on. This was not very clever, I think afterwards. We should have waited for the police...

    Have you ever heard of things like sheriff stars of the controllers to identify thenselfs? And there was no badge of ATAF on their ID cards, only white with long number and photo. Looked not really official, could be anything. I´m still wondering, why they left the scene when my friend told them, that he would not sign the fine ticket. They said nothing more, nothing about 240 €, paying at the ATAF office, waiting for police or something like that. Just went into the next bus and then up and away.

    Regards,
    Stindl

  4. #14
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    1,347

    Default Official ID

    Buongiorno,

    I use the bus and train quite frequently, but to be honest I have never seen them flash their ID...but I am going to be looking for someone to use it. I want to see what it actually looks like and then make a description, so guests can be prepared.

    I can't say if they were "real" or not - however, your description makes the whole situation sound rather suspect - which means it has nothing to do with ATAF and the public transport system but rather crooks and thieves.

    Buon Viaggio,

    Donna Denise

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