I’ve written about the MTR public transport in Hong Kong before – about station names as well as what I (don’t) like about the MTR. Normally I like most things about the MTR, but the last few days I’m really annoyed with it.
Given it’s so hot these days I’ve resorted to taking the MTR to work instead of the tram. The MTR has air conditioning so I don’t arrive completely drenched in sweat at work. However, it’s not something that I would consider a relaxing journey either.
The last few days I’ve had numerous encounters of:
- People standing on both sides of the escalator, not moving, just chatting to each other or being busy with their mobile phone. When you try to pass them, they are annoyed with you!
- Long queues close to the entrance and exit points at the MTR stations and when you walk a few steps away from the escalator or walkways there is lots of space to wait – but clearly no one wants to walk more than his two or three steps
- People entering the train as soon as it stops – not even letting people off the train first. This is really annoying at rush hour and just causes chaos!
- Not sure if this is even worse: People entering the train just to stand right in the middle and not moving down the aisle. So there is almost no space to squeeze on or off the train
- A classic one I’ve noticed is that younger/healthy people immediately fall asleep when sitting down – so they don’t have to get up when some one who is less able to stand for a longer period of time. They just appear to be sleeping until miraculously their station is announced and they jump up, wide awake and leave. Of course, this only works when travelling alone and becomes outright silly when two or three people next to each other do this
- A pet hate of mine is actually people clipping their nails on the train. Ok, I get it – you don’t have enough time and you need to put on your make-up. Fair enough. If you want to look silly doing this in the middle of the train ride, then go ahead – at least you don’t make a sound. But the sound of clipping nails just really freaks me out
I’m sure these problems are not typical Hong Kong problems, they probably happen on every big cities public transport system. What just annoys me is that it has become really bad recently – is this because of the holiday/summer season with lots of tourists in town?
And no, this is not how the MTR usually looks – it’s way more packed!