Your editor went through the process last month. It required a ridiculous time investment, lots of back and forth and zero results.

First, some context: last month I received a parking ticket for the most absurd reasons: stationary parking with both wheels on the pavement at the end of a cul-de-sac, situated in a small industrial zone. No human being would ever walk by that section of the road because it leads to a brick wall five metres behind it. Why would they create a pavement there anyway?

So your editor received a fat parking fine of €49,00, provided by the community officer of Steinfort. Besides the fact that I parked for only 30 minutes to visit a car dealership inside the building, and there was no other parking space available, I could've placed the car half a metre to the right, so it wouldn't touch the pavement section. Sure, I would accept a €49,00 fine if I stopped in the middle of Boulevard Royal on a Tuesday at 1pm, but not here.

After cursing and cussing about the matter to a nearby car mechanic, who shrugged and seemed to agree with me, I checked the back of the ticket how to file a complaint. I was expecting a paragraph stating "please visit and download the complaint pdf", but no. One has to visit the police station of the commune where the parking ticket was handed out. Why can it not be done at any Luxembourg police station?

As I live in the east of Luxembourg, Steinfort is quite a drive away. With my job as a musician I am on the road quite a bit, so scheduling a police station visit is not easy.

The following week I drove over to Steinfort to visit the station. Turns out that the office  is not open from Mondays to Fridays from 9am-5pm like any other public place, but only for two hours between 1pm-3pm. Really? Insufficient funding to staff the desk for eight hours? So that was that, back home.

The following week (after reshuffling my agenda again for it) I drove back at 1:15pm to the Capellen station. Even though the stated opening hours were 1pm-3pm, the station was closed at 1:30pm. So that was that, back home.

On my third attempt, and it was a magical moment of relief, I was able to access the Steinfort police station. Upon request to file a complaint I was handed a A4 piece of paper that required me to argue why I would not have to pay the ticket.

I felt like being back in school, where we learned to structure our argumentation and opinion and hope the teacher would be convinced. I jotted down that I had picture and video proof, but they weren't interested. A copy was made of my parking ticket, I left my phone number and was told I would be contacted again. This was one month ago, and I haven't heard back since.

Cheekily, the authorities have now placed "no parking" signs at the spot where I got my ticket. Luckily, my video proof shows those signs weren't there on the day I got the fine. But let's wait and see. It will be a long wait, and without doubt another couple visits to the station for whatever reason.

Why does this process have to be this time-consuming?


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