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Old 08.11.2011, 09:08
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Bags on seats

I know this is a popular topic, but I was reading 20 Minutes this morning and it appears that the SBB want to finally do something about people using seats as a place to store bags and coats.

The report says that passengers using seats for such a purpose will first be asked to purchase a ticket for the seat, and refusal will get them ejected from the train.

Nice idea in principle, but in practise does anybody really think this is going to change anything at all?
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Old 08.11.2011, 09:14
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Re: Bags on seats

So now people can legitimately keep the seat next to them free by buying a ticket ? That's nice on a busy line... The rich get more space and the travel plebs have to stand. It has merely legitimised a questionable practice in favour of revenue...
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Old 08.11.2011, 09:51
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Re: Bags on seats

All well and good in principle - in practice this is very much a case of cart before the horse. On the trains that I use (S2 to airport) there is virtually no luggage space. What there is is in a space reserved for the disabled! It seems they enjoy creating rules so that if the urge takes them they can fine you any which way.

I'm surprised that the Green movement who apparently are responsible for insisting that shopping centre car parks have to charge for parking do not take a similarly tough stance on the SBB. This is the only country I've been to where a main airport train has no space for suitcases/backpacks.
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Old 08.11.2011, 10:26
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Re: Bags on seats

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What there is is in a space reserved for the disabled! It seems they enjoy creating rules so that if the urge takes them they can fine you any which way.
Here's your solution: Adopt a disabled person and sit on their lap....
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Old 08.11.2011, 10:33
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Re: Bags on seats

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All well and good in principle - in practice this is very much a case of cart before the horse. On the trains that I use (S2 to airport) there is virtually no luggage space. What there is is in a space reserved for the disabled! It seems they enjoy creating rules so that if the urge takes them they can fine you any which way.

I'm surprised that the Green movement who apparently are responsible for insisting that shopping centre car parks have to charge for parking do not take a similarly tough stance on the SBB. This is the only country I've been to where a main airport train has no space for suitcases/backpacks.
The spaces between two sets of seats are designed for luggage. Why can't you use these?
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Old 08.11.2011, 10:45
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Re: Bags on seats

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So now people can legitimately keep the seat next to them free by buying a ticket ? That's nice on a busy line... The rich get more space and the travel plebs have to stand. It has merely legitimised a questionable practice in favour of revenue...
Couldn't the rich simply buy a first class ticket then they can spread themselves and their coats and bags all over a first class carriage which are more often than not practically empty anyway?
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Old 08.11.2011, 10:48
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Re: Bags on seats

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I'm surprised that the Green movement who apparently are responsible for insisting that shopping centre car parks have to charge for parking do not take a similarly tough stance on the SBB. This is the only country I've been to where a main airport train has no space for suitcases/backpacks.
I thought it was the VCS that get all shouty about car parks and public transport access. Apparently they have quite a strong lobby group and have managed to block quite a bit of commercial development over the years. Although they do look like they are probably connected to the Greens somehow...

On the subject of bags and coats on seats, I don't think it needs to go as far as buying a ticket (to be honest, you could do that right now without SBB changing any rules). They should poster-campaign in the same way they put those notices up in the trams warning people not to put feet on the the seats or smoke or play music.

Just put up notices saying "Please do not obstruct empty seats with luggage". Maybe even stick a fine on it, although I don't know how they'd enforce that bit.

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The spaces between two sets of seats are designed for luggage. Why can't you use these?
I don't use this space because I can't see my bags properly. I prefer to have my bags in my sight.
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Old 08.11.2011, 10:54
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Re: Bags on seats

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Couldn't the rich simply buy a first class ticket then they can spread themselves and their coats and bags all over a first class carriage which are more often than not practically empty anyway?
Sadly first class is no longer empty on most journeys. In fact they are almost 100% full on the main routes at peak times.

We have to share a set of 4 seats with other people. Scandalous!

Oh and please don't get me started on women who feel they should have the seat next to you, and half of yours as they continue to bump your arm while reading their newspaper or doing their lipstick etc, etc, etc. Seriously, just read a book! I can not possibly sit any closer to the window.
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Old 08.11.2011, 11:09
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Re: Bags on seats

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The spaces between two sets of seats are designed for luggage. Why can't you use these?
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I don't use this space because I can't see my bags properly. I prefer to have my bags in my sight.
But this space is surely better than luggage racks at the end of the carriage which I believe the OP was suggesting.

And, if you can sit on an inside seat, there's always a luggage rack in front of you on the opposite side of the carriage which is in clear view.
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Old 08.11.2011, 11:13
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Re: Bags on seats

I just attempt to slowly sit down on top of their bags, they soon move them out of the way.

One day I was catching a fairly full train, with very few spare seats, a lady was sitting in a window seat with her legs spread across the other seat. I just sat down on her knees. She was furious, and spitting fire told me that polite people ask if the seat was free before they sit down. I told her to piss off, the seat WAS free, which made her even more furious.
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Old 08.11.2011, 11:14
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Re: Bags on seats

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The spaces between two sets of seats are designed for luggage. Why can't you use these?
If you mean the space between the backrests of two back-to-back seats (not the space between two seats facing each other, which actually is designed for people), I must tell you that a suitcase that perfectly fits air transportation dimensions doesn't fit there.

It's embarrassing when you drag your luggage to the seat only to find out after some hard work in front of curious fellow passengers that you have to go back to the door area with all your stuff and stand there or sit on your suitcase.
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Old 08.11.2011, 11:22
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Re: Bags on seats

This all sounds like a bunch of ruckus over nothing. IMHO, its a silly rule that would be marginally enforceable at best and would only earn the ire of SBB passengers. If the seat next to me is empty, I have set a jacket (or my small backpack) down in it before, but when we come to a stop, or somebody asks to sit there, I move it. I personally, am the guy that will relinquish my seat to the little old lady, or the stooped over old gentleman, if the situation requires. I think most people view this as common courtesy.

@ UTH- People don't get/stay rich by buying double fares on the SBB. I doubt the rich will be purchasing extra tickets for the sake of spreading out. And personally, if I was that well off to make a frivolous purchase like that, I'd rather be rolling in some exotic car that ends in 'i.'
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Old 08.11.2011, 11:26
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Re: Bags on seats

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Couldn't the rich simply buy a first class ticket then they can spread themselves and their coats and bags all over a first class carriage which are more often than not practically empty anyway?
Why doesn't SBB just do like the DB and go to reserved seating?

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Sadly first class is no longer empty on most journeys. In fact they are almost 100% full on the main routes at peak times.

We have to share a set of 4 seats with other people. Scandalous!

Oh and please don't get me started on women who feel they should have the seat next to you, and half of yours as they continue to bump your arm while reading their newspaper or doing their lipstick etc, etc, etc. Seriously, just read a book! I can not possibly sit any closer to the window.
I refuse to sit next to the window. Too claustrophobic. but I just love how someone sees the window seat next to me is empty, and expect that I will somehow move over to occupy it so that they may have the seat I am in. Oh nooooooo!!!!!! But I will gladly stand up to let you in... please... take your time... and don't you DARE put your bag on my seat! Oh... no you di'int!!!!
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Old 08.11.2011, 11:32
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Re: Bags on seats

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I just attempt to slowly sit down on top of their bags, they soon move them out of the way.

One day I was catching a fairly full train, with very few spare seats, a lady was sitting in a window seat with her legs spread across the other seat. I just sat down on her knees. She was furious, and spitting fire told me that polite people ask if the seat was free before they sit down. I told her to piss off, the seat WAS free, which made her even more furious.
You sat on her knees? If her legs were on the seat opposite wouldn't her feet be on the free seat? Were her knees in the middle with nothing underneath to support them, Ouch. Or were they on the seat beside her, but who sits like this? Anyway this useless without pictures.
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Old 08.11.2011, 11:34
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Re: Bags on seats

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They should poster-campaign in the same way they put those notices up in the trams warning people not to put feet on the the seats or smoke or play music.

Just put up notices saying "Please do not obstruct empty seats with luggage". Maybe even stick a fine on it, although I don't know how they'd enforce that bit.
This is a good idea .. but it would have to be a great deal more obvious .. ie. do not put your handbag, shopping and/or coat on the seat. Simply referring to luggage would have all those seat hoggers saying "but that's not luggage .. its just my things .."

Seat hogging with bags and refusal to stand up on public transport for those less able to stand are two really puzzling aspects of life in Switzerland. It runs so contrary to the otherwise (often over) polite formalities of public interaction and at the same time reveals a herd mentality which is clear can only be overcome with a really concerted effort on the part of the transport authorities. If, on the other hand, the antisocialness of putting bags on seats and not standing up for those less able was taught at the same time as changing into indoor shoes and hand shaking together with greeting by name, then I am sure these rules would be assiduously followed.
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Old 08.11.2011, 11:41
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Re: Bags on seats

I'm really surprised at the negative responses to the SBB's attempt to crack down on this problem. It's always annoyed me at the arrogance of some people who hog 2 seats at rush hour times. The SBB admit that it will be difficult to enforce but I'm glad they're taking a stand.
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Old 08.11.2011, 11:42
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Re: Bags on seats

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refusal to stand up on public transport for those less able to stand
which isn't always readily apparent. Not everyone has a visual cue that says "I cannot stand or hold a rail without falling; please give me a seat."
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Old 08.11.2011, 11:46
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Re: Bags on seats

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which isn't always readily apparent. Not everyone has a visual cue that says "I cannot stand or hold a rail without falling; please give me a seat."
Absolutely. And in these circumstances, travelling by public transport will always be a challenge. But many many people do give a clear visual clue. And I don't see anyone (except for me and my children) getting up to offer them a seat.
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Old 08.11.2011, 11:46
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Re: Bags on seats

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Seat hogging with bags and refusal to stand up on public transport for those less able to stand are two really puzzling aspects of life in Switzerland. It runs so contrary to the otherwise (often over) polite formalities of public interaction and at the same time reveals a herd mentality which is clear can only be overcome with a really concerted effort on the part of the transport authorities.
I recently used the train in England and didn't find the situation much better there
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Old 08.11.2011, 11:50
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Re: Bags on seats

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I recently used the train in England and didn't find the situation much better there
I commuted into London on the train and tube for 14 years and whilst I absolutely agree that it could be an issue, it is no where near as endemic as here.

Yesterday evening, my husband stood on a ICN train from Basel with our 3 year old son in our arms next to a seat being occupied by bags because the owner in question refused to move them as "there was no where else to put them". Luckily he was only on the train for 10 minutes and it was too packed for him to be bothered to take the issue any further. That was rather extreme, but I daily have to ask people to move bags so I can sit down. I perhaps had to ask people to move bags so I could sit down in the UK once every couple of weeks.
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