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SNCF attitude is not fine

To get a rail ticket from a machine at my local station I have 15 steps to perform. Most people cope... or did, that is, until July, when the machine was out of order.

This had happened before and there was no problem: you got a ticket on the train and, normally, the machine would be repaired in a day or two.

This time, the machine was not repaired and still is not.

My sister got on a train recently and, as it was starting to move, sat down to get her rail card and the €2 fare out of her handbag. At that moment, three inspectors appeared and told her she had to pay a €50 fine – and refused to accept any discussion or explanation. I believe in public transport. I have always praised SNCF and compared it favourably with the rail service in Britain, but this is no way to treat passengers.

Is it going to be compulsory to buy everything on a smartphone in future? How many older and poorer people will be excluded from travelling? Or has SNCF found it is easier to recoup losses by making it impossible to buy a ticket and then imposing enormous fines on anyone without one?

Meanwhile, with no ticket machine and no mobile phone, I run the risk of being fined €50 or €100 every time I want to make the journey to Angers.

Sandy Morris, Maine-et-Loire

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