A Guide: London Tube Etiquette

Thursday, 30 April 2015
Nothing irks me more than people with poor tube etiquette. I understand that it's rammed on the platform, you're late to work, you haven't had your morning coffee yet and have your face in a man's sweaty armpit. I do. I get it. And while the sentence should end with 'but that's no reason to get rude', I feel like sometimes some people really do need a punch in the face to realise they are making everybody's lives much more difficult than they need to be. 
We all have the same goal : Get from A to B. Let's make this happen as quickly and painlessly as possible by following this guide for idiots.



1. Stand on the right. STAND ON THE FUCKING RIGHT. If you are approaching an escalator and you know you haven't the stamina to make it to the top, start edging towards the right as you approach the escalator. Do not, I repeat, DO NOT get 'stuck on the left', try to make your way up, realise you can't make it, refuse out of pride to step to the right and end up clawing your way to the top at the pace of a salted snail, holding up everyone behind you.

2. Wait for people to get off the tube before you start to get on. It's manners. The train won't leave until everybody is off, and until a good amount of people have gotten on. Pushing your way on before everyone else is off makes it ten times harder for people trying to get off to do so quickly. You're slowing everyone else down because you won't wait an extra 4 seconds for a seat.

3. Give your seat up for the pregnant and elderly. Don't be a dick and pretend to be asleep.

4. Don't fucking try to hold the doors open so you can get on. What you are effectively doing is causing a tiny, tiny delay in which the tube shuts and then re-opens the doors just so you can get on. If everybody on every tube was as selfish as you we would be delayed by hours and never get anywhere. There is never a tube more than 4 minutes away,  (in rush hour 2 minutes!) so just bloody wait for the next one. 

5.  Don't try to talk to strangers on the tube, especially during morning rush hour. Nobody has time for this, no matter how friendly you think you're being.

6. Make a conscious effort to walk in a straight line. There is nothing more frustrating than being in a rush, trying to overtake someone who is weaving in and out as they dawdle along so you end up dancing behind them like Taylor Swift trying to get past.

7. DO NOT GET OFF THE TUBE AND STAND IN FRONT OF THE DOOR WAITING FOR SOMEONE. You can make it 3 more steps further forwards and wait against the wall, thus not holding up everyone else trying to get off/onto the tube you've just exited.

8. DO NOT STAND IN THE MIDDLE OF AN EXIT / DOORWAY. You are in the underground, holding up everyone else behind you who are trying to get past. Step aside, this really is common sense.

9. Not having your Oyster card ready at the barrier, stopping at the barrier to locate it. Was it a surprise that the barrier was there? No? Then why weren't you fucking ready for it?


10. If you have a backpack for the love of God, take if off and put it between your feet when you get onto a busy tube. Imagine how many more people would fit on if everyone who had a backpack did this.


To be honest I'm embarrassed I even had to write this post because some people have literally no common sense or courtesy, but there it is. Next time you get onto a tube may you remember all of these things and leave in the peaceful knowledge that you are better than 50% of the population in London. Congratulations.
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