The tube rules that really matter

By | Category: Travel tips & opinions

The low-down on London Underground etiquette


So a ‘standing-only’ escalator trial has begun at Holborn Tube station this week, with commuters being asked not to walk up two of the station’s escalators in a bid to reduce congestion.

However the ‘standing only’ trial  – which goes against London Underground convention for customers to stand on the right of escalators, allowing others to walk on the left – hasn’t had the smoothest of starts. Rather most Londoners have chosen to ignore the rule and opt to walk up the escalators as usual.

Not that we Londoners are a disobedient bunch. Every Londoner dweller knows that there’s an underground etiquette that demands to be observed. For the benefit of tourists and out-of-towners, JAT reveals the 10 tube rules that really matter

will we ever see 24 hour running?

* Let passengers off the tube before you board

* Be polite and always offer a pregnant woman your seat – providing you’re certain she is “with child”

* Pregnant? Those ‘baby on board’ badges were invented for a reason. Please wear one so to avoid any awkwardness and confusion

* Move down the aisle. Which part of the driver’s “please move down the carriage” announcement, don’t you understand?

* Check your oyster card balance/have your contactless credit card ready, before reaching the ticket barrier. Londoners are always in a rush…

* Play your music too loudly. You’re on the tube – not in a club

* Ditto when it comes to talking on the phone: no one wants to know what you’re doing for dinner that night

* Try to make small talk on the tube. This is London: we don’t do familiar

* Read newspapers, texts, WhatsApp messages, emails etc over a fellow passenger’s shoulder. It’s just rude.

* Eat on the tube. Ok, a packet of crisps or a sneaky sandwich is acceptable when you’ve been held (yet again) at a red signal but avoid tucking into anything hot or smelly. A packed train is not the place to enjoy your dinner.




If you enjoyed this post, please consider subscribing to the RSS feed to have future articles delivered to your feed reader.
Tags: , , , , , ,