Over the past two weekends, we decided to travel from Dunfermline in order to travel on the much-publicised trams from the South Gyle stop into Edinburgh city centre with friends and family.On both occasions, we had trouble buying tickets at South Gyle. The ticket machine on the first occasion refused to accept our coins, so we had no option but to use a card – or not to travel.
With a card, the minimum spend is £3, so there is no chance of buying just a single ticket.
On the second occasion, we missed a tram, because there was a queue ahead of us, and only the one ticket machine on the eastbound platform.
We would have had to walk round the tram to get to the machine on the westbound side.
One of our party was flatly refused entry to the tram by the conductor, and was firmly told that we could only buy tickets on board for the euphemistically named “standard fare” of £10 – a “penalty” over the day ticket fare of £6.50.
If we, as locals, have found actually accessing the trams so difficult, we wonder what tourists encountering this thoroughly unhelpful system would make of this welcome.
Far from reflecting the warmth of the Scottish people, it might just feel rather like a rip off designed to recoup the overspend on the trams.