Public Interest Courtesy Rule #5

queue2.jpgFor any task or activity which may require some amount of patient waiting, whether it be anything from catching a bus to buying a loaf of bread, you must always be mindful of other people who have been waiting longer than you. These other people have the right to have their needs tended to before your own given that they have been waiting for longer.

All that is required from you is a quick look around when arriving at the relevant waiting point to determine whether anyone else is due to be dealt with before yourself. Sometimes this will be indicated by people waiting at a counter, but may be more formally represented by a line or queue of people. Common courtesy suggests that you allow these other people to be dealt with first.

If you do see a line or a queue do not think for a moment that wearing an expensive looking business suit will impress other people and give you the right to first service. Also, ignoring a queue and going straight to the front while offering a smile or shrug of the shoulders will likewise not impress your fellow queue companions. Behaviours such as these which display a flagrant disregard for the queue system will not be held in high esteem.

The queue system is a social equaliser meaning that no one person is more important than anyone else, the only important consideration is time spent in wait. If the queue system is not respected and upheld, society as we know it would cease to exist and chaos would reign.


Public Interest Courtesy Rule #1 – Eating food on public transport
Public Interest Courtesy Rule #2 – Use of umbrellas
Public Interest Courtesy Rule #3 – Pedestrian crossing buttons
Public Interest Courtesy Rule #4 – Two way flow of pedestrian traffic


  1. Ann

    “If the queue system is not respected and upheld, society as we know it would cease to exist and chaos would reign.”

    That pretty much describes Italy. Italians, at least in my opinion, have NO sense of forming a line/queue nor do I forsee it happening in the near future.

  2. Tisha

    Oh my goodness this is one of my pet peeves. Sometimes I wonder if I am invisible. So many inconsiderate people and astronauts out there. One guy insisted I was nowhere in the area when he arrived and swore on his mother’s life that he didn’t see me. I usually ask who is the last person on line and declare my presence so there are no misunderstandings.

  3. jillbeth

    I thank you for your public interest courtesy rules! In this day and age, it’s unfortunate that so many don’t have the slightest idea (or don’t care) about common courtesy. You are performing a valuable public service!

  4. Tracey

    Hi Ann – I haven’t been to Italy, but would very much like to. By what you say though I’m a little worried that I may be irritated by a lack of order! 8)

    Hi Tisha – I’m very familiar with people like that as well. I’m sure they know that we know that they know we were first, but that doesn’t stop them!! It happens to me a lot. Sounds like you’ve found success with a proactive approach though.

    Hi Jillbeth – Thanks for your comments. Yes, I find that some people don’t seem to consider other people when going about their lives. These ‘rules’ are a good way for me to vent.

  5. Nico

    I have actually had people push in front of me who have said “But I’m in a hurry” when I object.

  6. Tracey

    Hi Nico – That’s dreadful! All I can say is ‘people just ain’t no good’. Like you’re not busy yourself!

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