Promotion creep

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Children who take the tram on Istiklal Street in Istanbul drive
Warning notice in a Basel tram

Creepy transport , colloquially referred to as " fare dodging ", occurs when someone deliberately uses public transport without authorization and generally deceptively surrounds himself with the appearance that he fulfills the requirements of the operator's conditions of transport. This is a criminal offense in many countries. The word Schwarzfahr is said to be derived from the Yiddish “shwarz” = poor. From this it can be concluded that fare dodging means “driving poorly” according to its linguistic origin.


In Germany, fraudulent transport is sanctioned according to Section 265a of the Criminal Code ( fraudulent performance ). In Germany, depending on the transport association, the proportion of fare dodgers is estimated at 0.6% (Gelsenkirchen) to six percent (Chemnitz).

The proportion of travelers for whom an increased transport charge is levied among all Deutsche Bahn travelers is around 0.08 percent. Across Germany, around 7,000 of the 230,000 reported fare dodgers recently served a replacement prison sentence .

The increased transport fee is an independent, civil law claim, for which the offense of intentional secret transport does not have to be given. Any types of violations of the rules of carriage, including errors regarding the correct tariff, or detailed rules that are not to be expected immediately, are potentially sufficient. Since 2003, the increased transport fee has been 40 euros. The amount was increased to 60 euros with effect from July 1, 2015.


In the Austrian Criminal Code there is § 149 (fraudulent performance) , which also includes the use of public transport without paying the intended fare and is threatened with a judicial penalty.

"Section 149. (1) Anyone who fraudulently deceives transport through an establishment serving public transport or access to a performance, exhibition or other event or facility without paying the fixed fee is, if that The remuneration is low, punishable by imprisonment of up to one month or a fine of up to 60 daily rates. "

According to current legal opinions, this act is only punishable by a court of law if a conductor or other supervisor present is deceived when boarding, for example not when using a conductorless tram without a ticket. Anyone who tries to get out of the situation during a check, for example by using various pretexts, could be guilty of section 149. Also, the cost of a long-distance ticket could no longer be viewed as a "low charge".

To close this loophole, can "dodging" according to the introduction Act to the Administrative Procedure Acts 2008 (EGVG), Article III , be punished by the authorities as administrative offense with a fine of up to 218 euros (much like about the illegal parking) of § provided 149 StGB is not applicable to the specific case.

"(1) Anyone who [...]
2., except in the case of an act threatened with a judicial penalty, procures transport through a public transport facility without properly paying the fee set in accordance with the tariff provisions and conditions of carriage of these facilities, [...] commits [...] an administrative violation and is of the district administrative authority, for the area of a municipality, for which the Landespolizeidirektion at the same time security authority is the first instance, to punish thereof, with fine up to 218 euro [...].
(4) The offense according to Paragraph 1 Z 2 is unpunished if the perpetrator pays the fare and any surcharge provided for in the tariff regulations or conditions of carriage immediately upon entering, albeit upon request. This also applies if the offender pays the fare and any surcharge provided for in the tariff regulations or conditions of carriage within three days, provided that he identifies himself by means of a public document with a photo when requesting payment in the means of transport. "

The right to charge an additional fee or to determine the identity is stipulated in the General Conditions of Carriage for regular road traffic, Section 25, or in the Railway Transport Act, Section 21.

If the outstanding fare and the additional charges of the transport company are paid immediately or within a specified period of time, no notification is made to the administrative authority and the administrative penalty does not apply.

If the fare and the additional charges are not paid or not paid on time, the transport company can claim these under civil law and an additional administrative penalty can be imposed.

According to the Supreme Court ruling, ticket inspectors and other persons commissioned by the transport companies, such as private security services , are allowed to stop suspected dodgers in order to have the police establish their identity. For this purpose, appropriate stopping measures by inspectors are justified as self-help according to § 344 ABGB.


In Switzerland, Art. 150 of the Criminal Code is a provision similar to Section 265a of the Criminal Code in Germany, which makes fraudulent performance a criminal offense.


In February 2015, the SNCF published a plan anti-fraude (roughly: “Plan against fraud”). In it, she announces an increase in the fines for fare dodging. She plans to invest in platform barriers .


In the Athens Metro, fare dodging costs 60 times the ticket price.

Specific cases

In Graz , 24 cases were heard in court in May 2014, in which employees of a security company, who were now largely dismissed, who were entrusted with the ticket control for the urban public transport lines, marked expired tickets, passed them on to acquaintances and accepted incorrect ones as valid should have. This practice is said to have been discovered by an employee of the mobility center and recognized by detective work between 2011 and 2013 and caused damage of a good 110,000 euros. However, there were 17 acquittals, especially since the actual amount of damage could not be credibly proven.

At Wiener Linien (vulgo :) Schwarzkappler checked between 5.8 and 7.9 million passengers annually from 2012 to 2016, the proportion of (complained) fare dodgers decreased monotonically from 2.7 to 1.7% .

Black and gray drivers

Creeping promotion is often referred to as "fare dodging".

In addition to the group of dodgers, the group of gray drivers is also discussed in specialist circles. In particular, people who have a ticket, but this is not a valid ticket in the sense of the transport regulations, are considered to be gray drivers. The assignment aims in particular to ensure that there is no willful action.

The “classic” gray driver is the tourist without local knowledge who, ignorant of the tariff regulations, has not acquired the correct ticket or has not validated it or has incorrectly validated it. Inconsistent tariff regulations contribute to the fact that the gray driver believes that they are in possession of a valid ticket.

Occasionally, however, a ticket is also (deliberately) used beyond its local or temporal validity, whereby the transport companies usually grant goodwill and only charge a small amount or completely refrain from prosecution in the event of less fault .

The difficulty is to distinguish the gray from the dodger. Is someone z. B. Unfamiliar with the location and has not canceled his ticket because he is used to getting it validated from the machine, or is this just a pretext to steal the transport service? Arbitration bodies such as the Arbitration Board for Public Transport (söp) or the Conciliation Board for Local Transport NRW (SNV) deal with the subsequent clarification of this question between passengers and transport companies.

"Fare dodging" with identification

A new variant of fare dodging is currently leading to legal debates and processes in Germany. More and more people drive marked without a ticket with the argument that it is then not fraudulent and therefore not punishable. While the Federal Police are of the opinion that clearly recognizable fare dodging is a criminal offense, the first acquittals have now taken place. On the discussion pages of law faculties, too, the trend is more towards denying criminal liability. Further court proceedings are currently ongoing. The Hanover District Court ruled on February 24, 2010 that transport without a valid ticket is also punishable under Section 265a of the German Criminal Code if a T-shirt with the imprint “I drive in black” is worn. The Berlin Court of Appeal also decided in the decision of March 2, 2011 with the file number (4) 1 Ss 32/11 (19/11) that a "reservation in the form of a credit card-sized sign attached to the clothing in the event of a ticket inspection, with which the unwillingness to pay is expressed “the outward appearance that the passenger is in possession of a valid ticket and is complying with the applicable conditions of carriage is unsuitable for shaking or eliminating. Likewise, the Higher Regional Court of Cologne ruled in the decision of September 2, 2015 with the file number 1 RVs 118/15 that the offense of fraudulent performance according to § 265a Paragraph 1 Alt. 3 StGB is also implemented if a hat with a note with the inscription “I drive black” is worn while traveling without a valid ticket.

On the other hand, the district court and on April 18, 2016 also the district court of Giessen acquitted a dodger with identification.


Inspectors check the existence of a valid and possibly - if necessary - correctly validated ticket for the individual passenger or a travel group. This determines on the one hand whether passengers are authorized to travel with them, and on the other hand whether a train conductor sold the relevant ticket and possibly also validated it, or whether the ticket machine and validator correctly printed or punched it.

These are mostly referred to as ticket inspectors , a term that is particularly popular in the east and south of Austria has been - for a long time - Schwarzkappler, even if he appears without a peaked cap and possibly without a uniform in civilian clothes. As a rule, inspectors identify themselves with an identification card, often attached to a ribbon or a self-retracting cord, mostly with their photo. Around 1980 ESG Linz also had round plaques made of cast brass with the raised inscription ESG (in the middle in the circle) and all around "TRAFFIC / CONTROL". these were kept ready in their trouser pockets and usually presented to the first passengers to be checked with a cupped hand.

Civil inspectors can act as a complete surprise. In the case of long tram sets in twos or threes, inspectors appearing in several places make it more difficult for dodgers to escape undetected. Dispensing with the otherwise popular men's handbag (for writing utensils) and choosing from casual to slightly original clothing or equipment, such as a briefcase, a backpack or a camera bag, increased the effectiveness of civilian inspectors through camouflage.

See also



  • Gabriele Beyer: The behavioral intention to “drive in the black”. An empirical analysis with the ALLBUS data set 2000. (Print on Demant) Bachelor + Master Publishing, Hamburg 2015, ISBN 978-3-95549-267-0 (Master thesis Universität Leipzig 2012, 87 pages ISBN 978-3-95549-767- 5 full text PDF with costs, 87 pages).
  • Hans-Ullrich Mühlenfeld: Crime as a rational election act: an empirical examination of the rational choice theory based on the fare dodger. Edition 451, Stuttgart 1999, ISBN 3-931938-10-7 .


  • Szu-Chieh Hsu: The presumption of use: A study from the perspective of comparative law between Germany and Taiwan (= legal research and development , volume 802). Utz, Munich 2015, ISBN 978-3-8316-4406-3 (Dissertation University of Munich 2014, 201 pages).
  • Thomas Hilpert: Passenger rights and obligations of public transport regular services according to the PBefG. Kölner Wissenschaftsverlag, Cologne 2012, ISBN 978-3-942720-18-2 (Dissertation University of Rostock 2012, 301 pages).
  • Cornelia Lattka: Driving without a (valid) ticket. An analysis of the legal problems of the so-called "fare dodging" (= scientific articles from the Tectum-Verlag / Law Series , Volume 41). Tectum, Marburg 2010, ISBN 978-3-8288-2216-0 (Dissertation University of Rostock 2010, 391 pages).
  • Katrin Hagemann: Legal problems of fare dodging in public transport (= series of publications studies on jurisprudence , volume 220). Kovač, Hamburg 2008, ISBN 978-3-8300-3717-0 (Dissertation Bucerius Law School, Hamburg 2008, 259 pages).
  • Jan Schwenke: On the criminal liability of secret transportation, Paragraph 265 a StGB , Hamburg 2009, OCLC 705500917 (Dissertation Universität Hamburg 2008, full text PDF, free of charge, 269 pages 0.9 MB),
  • Gerald Hubmayr: Schwarzfahren: the art of tariff-free network gliding , with a foreword by Roland Girtler, Böhlau, Vienna / Cologne / Weimar 2000, ISBN 3-205-99187-7 (dissertation University of Vienna 1999 under the title: Blinder Passenger, Transport Company and Controller , 187 pages).
  • Annette Eyers: The decriminalization of illegal driving in the so-called "one-time cases" , Gießen 1999, DNB 957728492 (dissertation University of Gießen 1999, 279 pages).
  • Stephan Ochsner: The criminal treatment of the fare dodger , Zurich 1997, DNB 952288907 (dissertation University of Zurich 1997, 174 pages).
  • Johannes Pohl: Schwarzfahren: Working conference at the University of Bremen, June 3, 1994, published by WE Kriminalpolitikforschung (Hrsg.) University of Bremen. Scientific unit on criminal policy research (= materials on criminal policy , volume 6), University bookstore Bremen 1995, ISBN 3-88722-332-2 .

Literary representations

  • Michael-André Werner: fare dodgers. Novel, 2nd edition, structure paperback, Berlin 2003, ISBN 3-7466-1983-1 .
  • Keith Gray: The Boy Who Lived on the Train . Story, children's book (= Ravensburger Taschenbuch Volume 52181), Ravensburger, Ravensburg 2001 (original title: The Runner 1998, by Ellen Würtenberger), ISBN 3-473-52181-7 .

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Eva-Lena Lörzer: Imprisonment for fare dodging: Those who are too poor go to jail . In: The daily newspaper: taz . September 7, 2018, ISSN  0931-9085 ( [accessed September 12, 2018]).
  2. Answer of the federal government to the small question of the MPs Stefan Schmidt, Tabea Rößner, Matthias Gastel, other MPs and the parliamentary group BÜNDNIS 90 / DIE GRÜNEN - Drucksache 19/13278. (PDF) Processing of increased transport charges at Deutsche Bahn AG. In: German Bundestag, October 17, 2019, p. 2 , accessed on January 18, 2020 .
  3. Eva-Lena Lörzer: Imprisonment for fare dodging: Those who are too poor go to jail . In: The daily newspaper: taz . September 7, 2018, ISSN  0931-9085 ( [accessed September 12, 2018]).
  4. Ordinance on the General Conditions of Carriage for tram and trolleybus traffic as well as regular motor vehicle traffic (BefBedV), § 9 Increased Carriage Fee . ( ).
  5. Unknown two-minute rule: Bought a valid ticket - and still driving a fare dodger . In: world . December 1, 2017 ( ).
  6. Ordinance amending the regulations on increased transport charges of May 21, 2015 ( Federal Law Gazette I p. 782 )
  7. General Conditions of Carriage for regular motor vehicle traffic, version of January 19, 2001 , RIS
  8. Railway Transport Act , RIS
  9. ^ OGH does not allow dodgers to run , Die Presse , October 22, 2007
  10. February 20, 2015: La SNCF augmente le prix des amendes pour lutter contre la fraude
  12. Modalité de règlement (in the section 'Textes visés' the relevant paragraphs are mentioned)
  13. SNCF. 49 millions d'euros investis contre la fraude dans les transports
  14. Roland's blog: Dodging in Greece costs 60 times the ticket price. In: Retrieved March 16, 2016 .
  15. ^ Ticket manipulation: "Schwarzkappler" in court., May 8, 2014, accessed on March 23, 2016 .
  16. ^ "Schwarzfahrticket" process: guilty and acquittal , ORF online on May 28, 2014
  17. ^ Rate of dodgers in Vienna decreased again, January 31, 2017, accessed January 31, 2017.
  18. ^ Federal Police Directorate Munich: Federal Police warns! "Black driving with labeling" is a criminal offense of stealth acc. 265a StGB. (No longer available online.) MSN, archived from the original on March 4, 2016 ; accessed on March 23, 2016 . Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  19. ^ Acquittal by the Eschwege local court. (PDF), November 12, 2013, accessed on March 23, 2016 .
  20. Anarchy in buses and trains? “I drive black!”, March 4, 2015, accessed on March 23, 2016 .
  21. Does a label protect against the penalty for fare dodging? (Saasen project workshop)., July 18, 2015, accessed March 23, 2016 .
  22. Confessing dodger: “I drive black” T-shirt does not protect against punishment - message from February 25, 2010 on
  23. KG · Decision of March 2, 2011 · Ref. (4) 1 Ss 32/11 (19/11) Website of the free legal database OpenJur . Retrieved February 19, 2017.
  24. OLG Cologne, decision of 02.09.2015 - 1 RVs 118/15 Retrieved February 19, 2017.
  25. GZ Medien GmbH, Giessen: Complete success: Three acquittals in the Giessen illegal driving trial - but not all questions answered yet | Casting | Giessen newspaper. In: Retrieved October 31, 2016 .
  26. ^ Acquittal for Bergstedt in the dodger trial - City: Overview - Gießener Allgemeine Zeitung. In: Retrieved October 31, 2016 .