Tuesday, May 04, 2010


R unning that red light ended up costing 123.50 EUR - 100 for the actual ticket, 20 "Gebuehr" (WTF?) and 3.50 for processing or something. It was 1 point off my license.

In other news, my work contract ended at the end of April. No more funding for the project at the moment, so I'm out of work. I knew this was coming and scheduled a month-long trip to the US for this month. When we went in to the TK (health insurance company) to sign up for voluntary (paid entirely by us) insurance, the guy there said I should go register with the unemployment office and they will pay for my health insurance. But, he said we had to do it within a month after the end of my job. So, we ran in there today during a bunch of other errands to try to sign up, and the lady there wouldn't have it, since I'm leaving on vacation tomorrow. Obviously I can't take a job while I'm away, so it makes sense, but the other guy told us we had to do it within a month! I guess not - she said I can come back in mid-June when I return. I hope I don't get back only to be told I missed a deadline!

I swear I will post the rest of the Dutch stuff sometime...


  1. 123 Euro? For a bike? That's insane! I got flashed by those camera boxes in my car (for speeding) and it only cost 24 Euro.

  2. I agreed with the high-heeled Mommy... that is stupid, especially for a confusing intersection. It really sounds like it is a trap meant to buffer the city's coffers.

  3. Regarding the health insurance, the worst they can do is book you on "voluntary insurance" for those 2.5 months. I.e. you're losing about 350 Euro. And of course you won't get any unemployment benefits for the duration until you formally hand in the application.

    Have fun at IFAS' job applicant training in late June then. Heidelberg's Jobcenter requires taking it.

  4. Eek sorry about your job contract. Enjoy your trip to the States, though.

    And I can't believe that ticket! That's outrageous.

  5. Ouch. That ticket is completely nuts - especially the Gebühr.

    Have fun on your travels!

  6. Whoa! They're not messing around there! I got caught by one of those cameras for running a red light in my car last month and it was $75.

  7. Regarding the ticket, the official system is that people on bikes pay half what someone in a car would pay.

    Passing a red light (more than 1 second) costs 200 Euro in a car, therefore 100 on a bike.
    If someone would have been endangered, it would be 160, if there had been an accident it would be 180.

    You get off pretty easy on the points though. Basically, every fine over 40 Euro now simply carries a single point; the additional 3 points + 1 month loss of license that would have happened to a car driver do not carry over to bikes when red lights are involved.

    The maximum fine for anything (except DUI) on a bike is 350 Euro + 4 points, for bypassing a closed bar at a railway crossing.

    The Gebühr is for processing it in municipal administration. The processing is legal due to it being a "personal ticket" - not one written generally to e.g. the owner of a car.

  8. And don't think you can avoid a DUI by riding your bike.

    Xou could register for unemployment, but they do tend to check up on foreigners to make sure they are actually looking for work. Shame you can't claim in the US, where you get something like 99 weeks now, eh?


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