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    How to switch seats unobtrusively on public transport  

    There’s always at least one on any form of public transport: the nightbus/last train drunk you are worried will at best fall asleep on your shoulder, at worst puke on your shoes; the intimidating-looking teenagers in hoodies, who probably in fact go to a selective-entry school and holiday in the Dordogne; the person with the cold but no tissues; the person eating non-brand fried food; the snogging couple; the local ‘character’ with personal hygiene problems; the brattish child kicking your seat from behind…

    But how do you pull off a successful seat swap without making it obvious why you’ve moved (and thus invoking the wrath of the scary teenagers/drunk/fried chicken eater, the scorn of other passengers who will spot you for a middle class princess unable to rough it with the rest.

    There are a few manoeuvres you might deploy without arousing suspicion:


    1. Pretend it’s your stop and either move to a different deck/carriage out of sight.
    2. Pretend you thought it was your stop but then realised you were mistaken but can’t be bothered to walk all the way back to your original seat.
    3. Offer your seat to someone who looks pregnant, disabled or old and don’t accept no for an answer.
    4. Fake a phone call then affect moving to get a clearer mobile signal.
    5. If the front seat becomes free (buses, trams and light rail) this is your get out. It is still acceptable for a grown person to think this is the best spot and make a beeline for it.


    On no account confront the irritating party. This would be most un-MC.

    Reader Comments (4)

    Do people actually use public transport; how extraordinary.

    December 3, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMike

    Or, in your poshest voice, you could tell them to -

    Which is - Oh. go away, you old windbag, you.

    December 5, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterExpat Mum

    Or just grow a pair and sit where you want.

    December 7, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterNorthern MC

    We do, whilst you are stuck in your traffic jam and searching for spaces and wasting all that money on petrol, insurance etc, and not getting any exercise. How very extraordinary, indeed!

    December 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTotes

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