Dit is de drieëndertigste in een serie van (voor zover de wifi het tijdens de vakantie toelaat) dagelijkse reisverslagen. De aanleiding voor onze reis vindt u hier.

Qua herintreden in wat zo bombastisch de beschaafde wereld heet was Kamloops al een schok geweest, Vancouver was de hel.

Onze reisgids roemde de stad nog om haar ontspannen atmosfeer, daarvan was in het centrum weinig te merken. In geen enkele straat razen de auto’s niet langs je heen. Dit was een duidelijk geval van ontwenning, van te hoge prikkeldichtheid. Binnen een half uur verloren wij een aanzienlijk deel van onze in het grote groene achterland van Vancouver opgedane koeienkalmte.

De echtgenote in kwestie en ik beschikken in dergelijke gevallen over twee vluchtplannen. Afhankelijk van het tijdstip van de dag schuilen we in een koffietentje of in een Ierse pub.

Het was vier uur in de middag.

Fred recenseert de hele reis:

Welkom bij aflevering 33 van mijn dagelijkse reisrecensies. Vandaag recenseer ik:

de Customer Service van EasyPark

Zonder verdere uitleg volgt hieronder de letterlijke tekst van de mail die ik naar EasyPark heb verstuurd:

Hello,

This afternoon my wife and I parked our rental car (license plate 261 WSX) at parking lot 2518 in Vancouver. We payed by credit card at the payment machine, but the machine did not issue a parking ticket.

We checked our credit card balance, and the amount we payed was reserved. (12.50 CAD from card number: **** **** **** ****, September 25th)

So I immediately called the phone number listed on the payment machine. The lady on the phone made a log of the problem, and told us to contact EasyPark if we would get a Notice of Violation ticket, and assured us that the Notice would be cancelled immediately.

I wrote a note and put that on my dashboard stating that we had payed, and that we had indeed called to the telephone number provided.

When we got back to our car later this evening, there was a notice of violation ticket. (#AA373988) So I called the phone number again, and I was told to fill out a form on easypark.ca, and that in doing so ‘our dispute would be reviewed’.

I tried to make it clear to your employee that – since our car is a rental car, and since we’re flying back to the Netherlands tomorrow (September 26th) and I don’t like to see our violation forwarded to the rental company, which would undoubtedly charge us without any questions, and that it is not our fault that the machine owned by EasyPark at parking lot 2518 did not print a ticket after payment – it should be the effort of EasyPark to rectify this failure, not ours.

Urging us to ‘dispute’ is a misleading advise based on falsification of the facts. The facts leave absolutely no room for argument, nor for opinionation: EasyPark caused this mess, I did not.

After making my point clear, your employee simply broke the connection, which I found a very insulting thing to do, especially to a paying but maltreated customer. (I want to make it absolutely clear that at no point in our conversation I was being impolite or otherwise inappropriate in my wording or tone of voice.)

I instantly called back. Your employee simply denied breaking the connection (which to me was another absurd statement of his, because he had said goodbye before doing so) and then said he would handle the situation, as I had requested.

When asked what his actions would be, he stated that he would try to fill out the form himself, but that he didn’t have all information needed. I tried to supply him with the information he requested, but his earlier actions leave me with little faith both in his capabilities and in the value of his promises.

The proceedings of today leave me wondering if EasyPark values the paying customer as much as that customer values a nice parking space. The fact that this comparison comes to you from a customer should be worrying in itself.

In my eyes, I have done everything in my power to help EasyPark set its error straight, and in my eyes great customer service would mean an instantaneous follow-up with a written confirmation that this notice of violation (#AA373988) is cancelled.

As far as I’m concerned, my calling (twice) and emailing is what I would call ‘reverse customer service’: I’ve pro-actively notified you of the malfunctioning machine at parking lot 2518, and of the falsely issued notice of violation.

All I need in return is a cancellation of that fine. And maybe an excuse, and a thank you for my reverse customer service.

Awaiting your prompt response,