Thursday, July 16, 2015

Why do we (well, some of us) find tourists annoying?

from:G. Munn
to:"C.J. Smith"
date:Wed, Jul 15, 2015 at 8:50 AM

I was one of the listeners of the Tuesday night howl show for U of T. 
I'm not knocking you or your site but I thought it was interesting when you complained about tourists and the GO train and said something to the effect they don't know how to act on a GO train.
If you're a tourist, of course you don't know all the rules.
Could you care to elaborate what you meant?


C.J. Smith said...

I have yet replied to Greg's email. Let's make this a group effort!

Squiggles said...

For starters: common courtesy. This involves:

1) No yelling and profanity - especially with children around
2) Keeping feet off the seats and only taking up 1 seat
3) Tucking bags and parcels under the seats
4) Allowing people with mobility issues or the elderly a chance to sit

Yes, the GO is public transportation, but it is not your living room. Treat it and the other commuters with respect.

Dakota said...

Where do we start:

1. Do not put your feet on the seats
2. Keep your shoes on
3. Your bag does not need a seat
4. Use your indoor voice
5. No need to push to get on the train. We will all get on.

C.J. Smith said...


Do you feel that tourists need to be told these are "rules"? Because like you, I assumed this was common courtesy that extends beyond the confines of a GO train.

You're a guest. Act like one. This also goes for those who are not tourists.

It's ridiculous some days...

And what's with this new trend of pulling out your purse or bags from under your seat and plopping them on the vacated seat opposite or next to you?

Where the fuck has that bag or purse just been??? On the floor! Where else has it been? Or yeah, on the floor of a restroom! Gross! And now you've put it on the seat?!

I don't put my purse anywhere but on the floor. I know where's it's been and it ain't pretty.

If you thought shoes were bad, you should see what's on the bottom of purses and handbags. Barf.

Bicky said...

Everyone has had some awesome suggestions. May I add the following:

1. Please do not block the doors while people are still trying to board the train. This is for the regular riders and tourists alike. It makes it difficult for those last minute arrivals to get on without feeling like they're busting through a finish line ticker tape in human form.

2. By the same token, don't stand at the doors at Danforth if you're not leaving until Ajax. Those getting off the train in between will thank you for it.

3. For the love of all this pure and holy, do NOT hit the yellow alarm strip if you've missed your station. Simply get off at the next one, and wait for the next train heading back to where you need to go.

4. Listen to the announcements, especially if you're unfamiliar with the stations. There's good information there. Those of us who ride daily have already heard them a zillion times and can recite them verbatim.

5. Enjoy your visit to Toronto, have fun, and plan a return trip!

Nora1968 said...

Please, please, PLEASE add "No saving seats" to this list. On the 4:25 pm train all week, there have been people who are clearly non-regulars (and tourists, which are not the same thing) who have gotten on to one of the busiest going-home commuter trains in the system and "staked out" entire quads. When asked to move bags, feet, etc. so that others could sit, these twits have very adamantly refused, insisting that the seat(s) are for "my wife", "my friend", "my mother" who is "coming any minute". The regular commuters in question (I recognized them all) were gobsmacked but, being true Canadians, didn't insist or move the offending bags and sit down - they gave the rest of us a "look" and moved on to find other seats. This particular group went through this exercise no fewer than three times before the rest of their party finally showed up and sat down with all the entitlement in the world.

When at one point I couldn't stand it anymore and leaned over to the group "saving" the quad beside me (who were dismayed that they were being asked to move their things so people who weren't their friends/ family could sit down) to inform them that you are not allowed to save seats on GO trains and that if you have tried to do so and are asked to release the seat, you're supposed to do that, their only response was more bewilderment (at least they didn't get snarky) and the insistence that it was OK because "they're coming".

Really? I have a friend with whom I like to sit each day, but she often can't make the train until the very last minute (if at all). My other friends and I do our best to keep the seat for her but if someone wants it, they get it - it's just good train etiquette, good manners and common courtesy.

C.J. Smith said...

Can you imagine if we all did this???

Actually, maybe we should

sasgirl said...

@Bicky - re. point 3, for some of us there is no train heading back (eg. Milton) but I totally agree with you!

Squiggles said...

I will admit I briefly rested the ole backpack on the seat one morning. I pulled a muscle in my shoulder/back and couldn't make it in one swing.

Otherwise, I think something needs to be said to everyone: daily commuters, tourists, day-trippers, etc. Obviously, it needs to be said. If it didn't people wouldn't be having the issues they are currently having with noisy people, seat hogs, saving seats, etc.

Anonymous said...

Train etiquette. Super simple stuff. (Might be slightly inappropriate)

Warren Downe said...

Dear tourists,
Please take a few moments to understand it its YOUR responsibility to know where you are GOing. Our bus driver is not your personal travel agent! Call 1-888-GET-ON-GO (438-6646) and talk to a CSR to figure out your itinerary and WRITE IT DOWN!

And while you are talking to the CSR, determine how much your excursion will cost as well as what payment methods are accepted. Credit and debit cards will not buy you a ticket on a bus. And don't be waving that $100 bill at our driver for a $15 trip whilst holding a cup of java in your other hand. You should have broken that C note where you bought your coffee.

Also, please leave your kitchen sink at home. No one needs to travel with this much junk: (copy & paste to browser address bar)

In closing, enjoy your trip and thank you for choosing GO Transit!

Anonymous said...

Maybe listen to the announcements about the Quiet Zone and read the posters ALL OVER THE PLACE that say the top level of the GO TRAIN is the QUIET ZONE.

TomW said...

I love the idea of seat saving. Can someone save me a seat on my train tonight? If you're not sure which one I mean, just save a seat anyway. Thanks!