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does buying train tickets require checking id?


civic94
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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v3LXh6RfdWM

that explains it all. I'm just wondering why in china, you have to show a ID. is it for foreign people like in the video, and locals don't need to show or? i mean, its not like people are leaving a country or something, it definitely seems that the guy in the video is just pissed off.

and no, Im not an ex conn, I was searching chinese videos for the high speed rail, and this video popped up. its quite amazing how nobody did anything and stick up for themselves.

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Nobody has ever asked me to show ID when buying train tickets, though I have friends who have complained about this. This makes me think that the rule is not enforced consistently. It's been a couple of months since I took a train in China so maybe the situation has changed now...

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Train tickets, yes, you must show ID (especially at the fast train stations, smaller train stations they may not always enforce it). Bus tickets, I have never been asked for my ID but I have noticed that all the Chinese people present their ID even for bus tickets.

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Basically, bullet trains require ID/ non bullet trains do not. Even sleeper T/K/Z do not require ID.

D = Slow bullet trains

G = Fast Long Distance Bullet TRains

C = Inter city bullet TRains

Z = non stop regular trains (fastest of the slow trains)

T = Very little stops regular Train

K = More stops than T, less than number only trains regular train

Number only trains = Unless you need to go somewhere middle of nowhere and are only serviced by these trains then, don't bother. EG. 3 hours from Tianjin to Beijing when a G/C train takes 35 minutes...

The reason is to prevent scalping. People used to buy large amounts of train tickets hoarding it all and selling them at a high price. With this requirement, you cant' scalp. Since fast trains are taken more likely by rich people, scalping is very high. For instance, if I am desperate, I can pay much more than a migrant worker.

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wow.. i learn something new everyday. when I was traveling on greyhound from seattle to spokane (5.5 hours) when I was in college, I have met quite a few people that took to bus to virginia (5 days) minnesota (2 days) and florida (6 days). I asked the guys how much was the ticket, and it was a couple hundred, which is the same as flying there one way, buy flying only takes hours, not days.

Sooner or later I figured out that these people probably have warrants or are wanted people, people that transport guns, large sums of cash, or drugs, or maybe they have not seen a plane in their life :). they all made up stories like "I dont know which bus to take to the airport" or "I dont want to pay 30 bucks for a taxi".

for me it was spending 36 bucks for a bus ticket, or 135 (ticket- 110, baggage fee-25) for a plane ticket. bus = 5.5 hours, while plane takes 4.5 hours (take 30 min bus/light rail to airport, arrive 2 hours early, 1 hour flight, after landing it will take another hour to get my luggage + wait for bus to get to downtown spokane. so im basically spening an extra 100 just to save 1 hour lol...

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The one ticket per ID system is a good thing, as scalping has become a serious problem, especially around holidays but it can be annoying since foreigners don't tend to carry their passport with them at all times (at least I don't)

But there are two ways around it if you've forgotten your passport

1. I have noticed that they are verrry lax when it comes to foreign IDs and tickets. Half of the time they don't even look at the passport properly or just enter some random numbers. I know this because I was catching a train with a foreign friend, and only she had her passport on her. She lined up, bought one ticket, then lined up again at a different window and bought another. On the tickets themselves, one was the passport number and the other was a random string of numbers.

2. They only need your ID when buying the tickets - when you board the train they don't ask to see your passport, so you can use someone else's passport or ID to buy your ticket.

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2. They only need your ID when buying the tickets - when you board the train they don't ask to see your passport, so you can use someone else's passport or ID to buy your ticket.

lol.. I think you just gave some people ideas.. 2 people can keep lining up at different windows all day long, using their ID, then have a bunch of tickets and just scalp them since the buyers dont have to have their ID's checked while boarding trains..

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The one ticket per ID system is a good thing, as scalping has become a serious problem, especially around holidays but it can be annoying since foreigners don't tend to carry their passport with them at all times (at least I don't)

Get rid of that habit. It's illegal and you may get in trouble(low risk), but still no point in risking it when there's an easy alternative.

Just carry a copy of the passport with the phote page. It actually makes everything easy since if you lose it, not a major deal. It works for buying train tickets, getting in hotels, and other stuff where you may need an ID. I do believe it may get you on an airplane in a pinch too since one of my froeign friends lost his and was able to board.

lol.. I think you just gave some people ideas.. 2 people can keep lining up at different windows all day long, using their ID, then have a bunch of tickets and just scalp them since the buyers dont have to have their ID's checked while boarding trains..

Half the trains I've been on have had people personally come to match tickets with ID's after you boarded and on your way. So your risking it if you do that.

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lol.. I think you just gave some people ideas.. 2 people can keep lining up at different windows all day long, using their ID, then have a bunch of tickets and just scalp them since the buyers dont have to have their ID's checked while boarding trains..

Haha, I was by no means suggesting that people use these workarounds on a regular basis, but if you happened to be in a tight spot, they might be a solution :P

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Half the trains I've been on have had people personally come to match tickets with ID's after you boarded and on your way. So your risking it if you do that.

So what happens if because the ticket-seller input the passport number so 随便 that there was a mismatch between the number printed on the ticket and the passport number? Would I get in trouble? I doubt it. I think they (railway dept) figure that the number of foreigners makes up such a tiny proportion of travelers, that they are not going to do anything more than go through the motions.

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Half the trains I've been on have had people personally come to match tickets with ID's after you boarded and on your way. So your risking it if you do that.

If a person who is rich, buys a scalped ticket for 3x the price becasue he/she dont want to wait in line gets caught, I bet that if they get caught, they can just bribe the ticket checker with some money.ticket checkers dont make much, do they?

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Get rid of that habit. It's illegal

Technically, yes. However I was advised by the local PSB not to carry my passport, except when travelling. So, I never do.

Also, in 15 years I've never been asked to show my passport other than at borders or when checking into a hotel.

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Wow, a local PSB advising you to not carry your passport? That's the funniest thing I've heard, and it sounds like a pretty cool local PSB. (You mean 派出所 not 出入境 right? If your local 出入境 went around telling stuff like that... just @[email protected]) Their advice is probably sound; although I've never been through the process, I am almost sure that the process you go through when you lose your passport is much worse than the slap on the wrist you get if you get caught without a passport.

When we came here on the orientation day at school a 出入境 representative came and made a big scare speech about laws in China and told us that we had to always carry our passports otherwise it's illegal and we'd get fined at all. Nobody takes it seriously though.

I have been asked for ID a couple of times, but those times I showed my student card and had no problem.

I really hate the way the law pretty much can criminalize almost every foreigner even if it isn't enforced though.

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If a person who is rich, buys a scalped ticket for 3x the price becasue he/she dont want to wait in line gets caught, I bet that if they get caught, they can just bribe the ticket checker with some money.ticket checkers dont make much, do they?

It doesn't work like that...

So what happens if because the ticket-seller input the passport number so 随便 that there was a mismatch between the number printed on the ticket and the passport number? Would I get in trouble? I doubt it. I think they (railway dept) figure that the number of foreigners makes up such a tiny proportion of travelers, that they are not going to do anything more than go through the motions.

True but this law affects everyone. As a foreigner you probably get a lot more leeway than I would and even more than a native chinese citizen.

However I was advised by the local PSB not to carry my passport, except when travelling. So, I never do.

Same here although in the context of getting a copy to carry around. If they didn't tell you to get a copy, that's very interesting.

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