I commute into downtown Toronto daily via bus and subway operated by the Toronto Transit Commission (TTC). I don't mind commuting, it gives me a chance to read, listen to music, or just to chill. Most commuters are kind and courteous but some are just rude without any regard for others. It's the rude ones that have motivated me to write this post and share my Rules of Engagement for TTC Commuters (in loud deep voice).
Hopefully, these rules will be read by all commuters and I won't feel like screaming on my next ride. BTW, these rules should not be new to you, they're just common courtesy.
Rules of Engagement for TTC Commuters
- Do not stand in the entrance way of the bus or subway unless there is absolutely nowhere else for you to stand. Trust me, you'll get off at your stop.
- Do not block the entire passageway with a stroller or buggy. Move it to the side or use the 3 courtesy seats designated for strollers or people with disabilities.
- Don't wait to be asked. Get up from the courtesy seats (blue seats on the new vehicles) if you see a person with a wheelchair or other device used for mobility.
- Offer your seat to seniors, pregnant women (only when it's absolutely obvious), people with young children, and people with disabilities. Oh yeah, and don't pretend to be sleeping or reading; it's your job to be aware.
- Let people off the bus/train/RT before you get on. Don't stand in the doorway. You are blocking folks from getting off and on. It's not all about you.
- Try not to body-check or knock down individuals as you rush for a seat. It won't kill you to stand, unless you're going to be riding for a very long time or you have physical issues.
- Do not stick your feet out. To clarify, if you're crossing your legs, your foot should not be sticking out in to the aisle.
- "Walk left, stand right" is the basic rule for any escalator in Toronto, especially on the TTC. If you need to rest while riding the escalator, stand on the right.
- Move away from individuals that make you feel uncomfortable.Don't wait until they start to interact with you to move, it will be too late. I've had way too many experiences with wackos on the TTC to know that your best bet is to avoid the interaction.
- Download one of the TTC apps on to your mobile phone. It will help you get where you need to and on time. My favorite is MyTTC (for Android); however, most of the TTC apps are pretty reliable. If the app says your bus will arrive in 2 minutes, it's highly likely that it will be there in 2 minutes.
- Be mindful of sensitivities to smell. Although, there are no rules against eating on the TTC, the scent of some foods are just too strong. Then there's body odor. It just lingers in the air and chokes you. Yuck! Then there's the flip side, some people need to ease up on their cologne and perfume.
- If you didn't pay a fare for your bag(s), why does the TTC owe your bag(s) a seat? Oh yeah, and don't get pissed because someone asks you to move your bag. The nerve!
- One seat per person. This one is pretty sensitive. If you are a larger person, you are exempted from this rule. This rule is against the "man-spreaders" (men/women sitting with their legs wide open), people who put their feet up on the seats, or people who put their bags on the seats (mentioned again to stress the point).
Note: These rules are not applicable to those with mental health issues or the homeless.