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MTR angry

Things that make Hongkongers mad on the MTR

With great trains comes great anger

By Graham Turner

Hong Kong’s MTR system is a remarkable thing. Our hallowed rail network branches out to nearly every corner of the city and has a 99.9 percent punctuality record. You’d think then, that riding on the MTR would be pure joy on wheels. Unfortunately, that’s not always the case. Here’s why.

RECOMMENDED: It's not all doom and gloom, if you need to calm down, here's the best places to do so. Then, once you're zen again, why not do some things that you can only do in Hong Kong to rediscover your love for the city.

Things that make Hongkongers mad on the MTR

MTR Screen Doors

People who stand in front of the MTR doors

Your attempts to be the first on the train (congrats on that by the way) simply prevents people from exiting the carriage. To those annoying folks? Chill. Seriously. Being first on the train won’t make the MTR move any faster, so have the decency to let people out first before shoving in. Just stand off to the side and leave it a few seconds before trying to cram on. It’s really not that hard.

MTR seat

Not giving up your seat

We don’t want to sound ageist, but here we go. If you’re sitting in a priority seat, be sure to move if an elderly person gets on your train or there’s a parent with a young child. So listen up adolescents, burying your face into your smartphone does not activate your hidden invisibility powers. We see you taking up that seat and yes, we’re frowning at you. Take that.

MTR ticket barrier

Ticket barrier hold-ups

Almost everyone on the MTR uses an Octopus Card. So why does it still come as a surprise to some people that when they reach the ticket barrier they need their Octopus? Queue a couple of minutes rummaging through bags when the person ought to have been better prepared, and a line of frustrated travellers get held up behind. Just have your cards ready, m’kay?


Vomit-inducing bouts of PDA

We’re not without sympathy here. Having your own place as a young person in Hong Kong isn’t easy, so couple time usually amounts to whatever minutes you can snatch while your parents are out. Still though, there's only so much our gag-reflexes can take, and judging by the way some couples get it on, you’d think it’s the final embrace before the world’s end. 

MTR ghost train

Ghost trains

How often does this happen? You’ve had a long day, you’ve had to fight through the rain to get to the station – you’re drippy, wet mess. This is exactly the time when the first train that comes by is a passenger-less ghost train that flies through the station to some other destination giving you the metaphorical middle-finger. Probably there’s a good reason for this but we don’t care, we just want to get home.

MTR suitcase

Suitcases on the MTR during rush hour

Do you really need to lug that suitcase full of powdered milk on the MTR during rush hour? We’re not saying people should hire GoGo Vans for every little thing, but why can’t they at least wait until the rush hour is over before filling up the carriage with extra baggage? Give us some room, people!

MTR phone watchers

Phone walkers

Forget uploading that photo of a sandwich onto Facebook – no-one cares. Instead, look where you’re going. It’s infuriating when you’re trying to duck and dodge your way through the station crowds and you knock into someone because they’re not looking where they’re going. And to make matters worse, they give you the death stare even though they’re the ones oblivious of their surroundings. Eyes forward, people.

Raining in Hong Kong

Individuals blocking MTR exits

A bit weather specific this one, but still, we’ve all experienced this. There’s a bit of a downpour and people are trying to wait it out by taking shelter beneath the MTR station exit. It seems like the smart thing to do until 20 other individuals have the same thought. Doing so creates a human wall that stops anyone else getting in or out without them having to barge through a tightly packed human scrum. Some of us were smart enough to look at the sky and bring our umbrella, so get out of our way, please.

slippery floor

Slippery floors

We’ve moaned about this before when we got angry about the weather. We get that sleek flooring is easier to clean and it looks decent, but the MTR speaker lady’s warnings that the floor may be slippery when wet is little comfort when we’re forced to inch along for fear of a bruised arse. 

MTR man hugging pole

People who lean on the MTR pole during rush hour

We’re looking at you lot, those assholes who lean their whole body on the poles in MTR trains so no-one else can grab them for balance. These poles are meant for multiple passengers and not just for you, you selfish bastard, to trap in between your buttcrack.

More things that drive us mad


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