The etiquettes of travelling by public transport

No, this isnt some deadly dull piece, dont worry, just a touch of my dry, tongue in cheek humour.

I realised today that I dont use any of the so called etiquettes of travelling by public transport, mainly because I’m too polite to do so. But all of these are true events that happened today on 4 trains and 2 buses.

1. Seemingly the most popular, as I saw this so often today, I think it must be the norm.

Take one seat for yourself, take the seat next to it for your handbag, shopping bag, or just about any other item that stops someone else actually sitting on the seat, even if a number of people are standing. Me, I need one seat for myself, and my handbag is quite happy sat on my lap, but…have I got this assumption so wrong? Its not like they actually pay for the second seat or anything like that! Me, on the one train I wasnt going to get a seat on otherwise, not subtle, “Is anyone sat there?” I ask.

Weird thing is, she answers “Yes.” but then removes the handbag and I sit down. I assume its either the done thing to say that, or she was incredibly stupid, because 20 minutes later, when the train arrives in Leeds, no one else has tried to claim the seat. I was glared at by her, but thats like trying to melt Antarctica with me! As I said, she wasnt the only one, but some people arent as ‘domme’ as me, and seemed happy to stand up, just so their poor bags could take the seat instead.

2. Stand in the middle of the aisle, letting no one pass, but not moving yourself into the empty seats, until…

Had this happen on the train coming back tonight, this guy literally shoved his way in front of me on to the train at Leeds, got to the narrow part of the passageway, and stopped. As he showed no signs of being turned into a mannequin by some laser beam, I had no idea why! I asked politely to be let by, but he seemed to have gone mysteriously deaf. Finally, and I do mean finally, when there is only one seat left, he rushes towards it, and takes it, so I’m left standing. I think I worked out why, but not knowing the mysterious way that some men’s brains work, I cant be sure. It seems his travelling companion wasnt as pushy as him, and was behind me. For some strange reason, this froze him to the spot, presumably until he was told to move by this other man? I only worked this out when seats became available at Dewsbury, and I was sat opposite this other guy on the train.

Please, if you cant take a seat without permission, just get out of the way and let someone else take it!

3. Dont take the inside seats, have the 2 of you sit on the outside seats, and guard them with your life.

Two old ladies got on the train together at Leeds, luckily for them, before the idiot who shoved in front of me. No, they cant sit together (for whatever reason?) despite the option to do so. They have to sit on the outside seats together, and take a ‘thou shalt not pass’ attitude to the seats inside them. Irony was, they were still on board when I got off at Huddersfield, but they’d been up and down twice because the people they forced to sit on the inside firstly both got off at Dewsbury, and then their replacements both got off at Huddersfield! They could have sat together, and not moved once, but…!

Funniest one though was not on any of the trains, it was on the bus coming back out of Huddersfield to home tonight.

A  woman got on at my stop with one of those baby buggy things, placed it correctly in the space so that a second one could easily fit in, and went and sat down. Next stop, the other main one in town, another woman with a buggy gets on. Plenty of room to park it, but oh no, she wasnt having that. Hers had to go in sideways according to her logic, and that meant the other buggy had to be moved. First woman wasnt having that, she’d parked it correctly (and indeed had) and it wasnt going anywhere. To say they nearly came to blows over this is no exagerration! Finally the second woman slammed her buggy in (sort of side on), grabbed her baby, and stormed off the bus and sat down. First woman then proceeded to pull her buggy across the bus (blocking half the aisle), and glaring incessantly at her, and both were still in that state of war when I got off 10-15 minutes later.

Clearly I am far too easy going, and non agressive for travel by public transport, I must learn from these fine examples lol!

The choice of song, not really a favourite of mine as such, but so suitable for today.

2 responses

  1. It is amazing how many people interpret “etiquette” to mean “behavior by the world that benefits me.”


  2. The trouble is I see this quite often, especially example 1. The thing that amazes me more is how many people just seem to accept that someone’s bag is entitled to a seat!

    Not me lol!


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