Clipper Card Woes: Overcharges and Cable Car Fail?
Photo by Steve Rhodes
August 7th, Saturday afternoon. At about 3:45 p.m. my friend and I are at 15th and Castro. We’re waiting for the 24 Divisadero to take us on one of two buses to the Upper Haight, with punch bowls from Hobson’s on our minds. We both tag our respective Clipper/Translink cards on the 24 at about 3:50. We get off at Haight and Divisadero and catch a 6 (Sassy Parnassy, as we like to call it) five minutes later towards our final destination. Once we tag our cards on the 6, the machine takes another two dollars off our accounts in addition to the initial tagging on the 24, making our two-buses-within-20-minutes trip a total of $4 dollars.
I’m broke, on summer break from school and unemployed so I had the time and energy to look into this. My transaction history shows my first tag on the 24 at 6:20 a.m. instead of something closer to 4 p.m.. My thought was obviously that the time on the 24’s Clipper machine was off (I was definitely NOT up at 6:20 a.m. on a Saturday). After spending a good hour on the phone with a personable woman from Clipper, I have the possibility of a refund after an “investigation” given my “report.” So until I hear back from Clipper, I’m stocking up on quarters and giving my card a rest.
I’m curious if this has happened to anyone else? Maybe if your accounts seem lower than it should, you should keep an eye on your balances after tagging your card.
Rider Mary reports another Clipper card reader malfunction on the cable car:
This morning I was on the cable car on my regular commute coming down Powell St. to Market turnaround. The conductor asked for my card, apparently scanned it, and incorrectly told me that my Clipper (Translink) card, which has the August Muni Fast Pass loaded on it, was invalid. I told the conductor that the card did indeed have a valid Fast Pass loaded on it and that so far this month it has worked on Muni cable cars, buses, etc. He said that he would let me ride this time but not again.
Clipper had gotten off to a rocky star this month with Wageworks issues, and we know Muni has had clock error issues (reported by KGO about the cameras on the bus). Have you been overcharged when you use your Clipper card? Let us know.