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Revealed! A rail operator's guide to public transport etiquette.

Posted on Jan 31, 2018

GoTransit Etiquette guide.jpgThough it may not seem like it to many rail passengers, the customary code of polite behaviour in society or among members of a particular group – or etiquette – is incredibly important. And rightly so, as following the considered norms and being aware of the established (and pretty obvious) do’s and don’ts make for less stressful, more comfortable and, most importantly, more enjoyable journeys.

Unfortunately, there is a small, but hardcore group of commuters across metro, tram and train carriages across the world whom feel that rules and restrictions simply don’t apply to them. For those rule-breakers the carriage is merely an extension of their living room and they will complete their journey in any way they see fit.

But, help is at hand in a part of Canada to reverse this trend, with the release of a document that addresses head-on passenger’s biggest gripes. Written in a lighthearted and self-aware style, and decorated with eye-catching illustrations, the GOTransit booklet has been written in accordance with the (well behaved) passengers themselves following “countless hours of research and analysis”.

GoTransit Etiquette - Seats.jpg

The Southern Ontario transport operator has broken down the document into 10 concise chapters:

  • Sitting
    featuring pictures and graphs about what is and isn’t suitable for shared seating
  • Feet
    and how their presence is far from welcome on, or indeed under, the seat
  • Food
    with instructions on how smelly and sloppy food should be consumed at home
  • Accessibility
    and the plight faced by those with disabilities who are ignored by their fellow passengers
  • Parking Lots
    not just an issue for train-stations, this section GOTransit Etiquette.jpghighlights the poor parking practices that make navigating parking areas a nightmare
  • Littering
    obvious really, and it’s summed up nicely here “One man’s trash is never another man’s treasure”
  • Noise
    focusing on the excessive volume of commuter’s music, GOTransit helpful provides a helpful Top 40 of least welcome music genres
  • Bus stops and platforms
    reflecting the other forms of transport that the Canadian transport company uses, GOTransit states the importance of queueing and not smoking
  • Doorways and aisles
    simple message here: keep them clear!
  • Personal hygiene
    apparently some people need to be told that picking one’s nose and cutting your toe nails isn’t the thing to do…

The Candian transport operator may even devise some more if enought people report more bad behaviour using #EtiquetteFail on Twitter.

The next challenge for GOTransit now lies in convincing that tiny majority making commutes such a chore for so many is to read this fantastic manual. Maybe they can read it in the traffic jam they created as a result of their poor parking.


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Attend: SmartRail 20018 - Dedicated to creating the digital railways of the future we bring together leading experts to discuss the challenges faced by the industry and the solutions.

Read: Five key technologies set to change rail and metro in 2018.

Topics: quirky

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Dave Songer
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