10 pet peeves when taking the bus

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Do you take the bus often? Save for a few delays or the rare cancelled trip, taking the bus is an efficient and cost-effective way to get around the city. However, if you ride the bus every day, you may observe or experience some troubling passenger behaviour every now and then. We’ve listed down some of these no-nos to help you avoid them and help maintain a comfortable and worry-free ride:

  1. Not paying the fare

    Don’t get on the bus and expect to get a free ride. Unless you are really hard up, asking for a free ride can be unfair to fare-paying customers. More than this, it holds up the bus when you talk to the driver for a long time.

  2. Holding up the bus

    Aside from #1, some people hold up the bus when they don’t have their Peggo, pass, tickets, card or transfers on hand before getting on the bus (and they have to scramble and look for it in their bags or pockets). This causes an inconvenience to people who are in line to get in. It also keeps the bus from going on its way. If you need to look for your pass, step back and let others go ahead of you, or better yet, get it ready beforehand.

  3. Occupying too much space

    In a crowded bus, a person who takes the aisle seat and uses the window seat for his/her bag can raise a few eyebrows. Considerate Manitobans will always be sensitive to someone looking for a seat or standing in the aisle. And if you are carrying shopping bags or big packages inside the bus, make sure that your bags do not block the aisle so that people can pass through easily.

  4. Speaking loudly

    If you need to chat with someone next to you or on the phone, be mindful of the volume of your voice. It can be disturbing to hear another person’s problems or life story broadcast out loud. To be respectful of other passengers, tone your voice down or just text.

  5. Not vacating priority seats

    It’s okay to take the priority seats in front as long as they are not needed yet. But as soon as an elderly person, differently-abled passenger or parents with a baby carriage get on the bus, kindly vacate them. If you want to go the extra mile, lifting the seats up will make it easier for them to position their wheelchairs or carriages.

  6. Littering

    Litter can wreck any passenger’s day. Some people may leave muddy newspaper pages on seats or food wrappers on the bus floor. If you must eat on the bus, make sure not to leave empty wrappers or any kind of mess on the bus. Keep candy wrappers, pieces of paper, or chewed out gum (wrap it in a piece of tissue) in your bag for throwing out later when you get home.

  7. Lack of personal hygiene

    The bus is an enclosed space so strong body odour or too much perfume can be hard to handle. Ensuring that you smell neutral should be the way to go. Also, personal hygiene should not be undertaken in public. This means don’t brush your hair, clip your nails, pick your nose, spit or floss while on the bus.

  8. Blocking the entrance and exit

    On a crowded bus, there is a tendency for people to stand near the entrance and form a crowd near the front. On the other hand, some do go to the back and then block the exit. These actions can hold up the bus, especially when people need to get off. So as much as possible, please stay away from the doors.

  9. Disrespecting the driver

    Winnipeg Transit drivers are some of the most affable and helpful people you can meet. You can ask them for directions when you are going around the city. They also monitor traffic and road conditions so you can get to your destination in the quickest, safest and most efficient way. They deserve our respect. It would be nice to greet the driver as you get on and thank them before getting off.

  10. Flying backpacks

    Having a backpack land right smack on your face is one of the worst things that can happen to anyone on the bus. If you carry a backpack, it would be good to be mindful of the space behind you. It’s very easy to hit people with your bag when you’re walking along the aisle. You can take it off before boarding and place it on your lap after you sit or on your side if you have to remain standing. And if you are behind a person who is carrying one, leave a bigger space between you and the bag if you can.

It would be important to know about the Public Transit By-Law and Code of Conduct. These are important reminders of what you can and can’t do inside the bus. We are so fortunate to have an easily accessible and reliable public transport system. By observing a few rules, we can all experience a comfortable and worry-free bus ride every day.

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Community Resources

Want to know more bus etiquette tips? Go to Winnipeg Transit’s Busology page.

If you are not familiar with Winnipeg Transit, read 10 things you need to know about taking the bus.

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