Have a nice trip? No we don’t mean it and BTW, we’re watching you!


dscn18662The biggest growth section in the Veoila rail company section has to be their their signage department.

dscn18651Since January, they must have hired dozens of signwriters and they have gone nuts.

Every day there seems to be another sign in the carriage telling you off about this, advising you about that and warning you about some other thing.

This week the most “friendly” one yet appeared.


Earlier I remarked about the new trend of passengers dobbing in others who don’t pay -  interestingly many readers emailled in to say they supported this as they didn’t see why bludgers should get a free ride. The sign is obviously the next step in the crackdown.

Nothing wrong with that but how come it has to be so huge - and there were 2 of them within my viewing space on the trip home today. And they just add to the growing clutter of angry signs. How about at least one friendly welcoming sign saying “Thanks for still supporting us despite the never ending problems and inconveniences. We appreciate it!”




  1. Simon in London says:

    I frequently use public trains all over the world, and I really could not agree LESS about the supposed ‘angriness’ of these signs.

    In London, you’d be lucky to get…

    “£50 Fine If You Can Not Produce a Valid Ticket.’

    The End.

    Direct. Blunt. To the Point. No Dilly-Dallying. Immediately says what needs to be said, and makes no apology for if.

    Compare this to Aucklands’ flowery nonsense, with its’ tiresome abuse of superfluous language and apologetic muck such as…

    ‘Please purchase your ticket at the earliest opportunity and retain your ticket for the entire journey. Otherwise you may be asked to purchase another ticket. Trespass bans may be issued to repeat offenders.’

    What? Did the run out of room before they got to advise passengers…

    ‘If you purchased your ticket in the correctly prescribed fashion, please proceed to the ticket office, whereupon, platform staff shall provide you with a complimentary blow job and foot rub’?

    Seriously…and as for the tiresome waffle about…

    ‘Caution. Please do not try to board the train when the doors are closing’

    … who is going to stop and read this, whilst they’re dashing for the last train for 30 minutes?

    In Rome, you simply have a large symbolised stick figurine, screaming in agony as its arm gets ripped off by the door.

    The End. Direct. Blunt. To the Point. No Dilly-Dallying. Immediately says what needs to be said, and makes no apology for if.

    The flowery language also leaves much to be desired from the Point-of-View of foreign tourists, for whom English is a foreign language.

    Armed with only a phrase book, what chance do they have to translate these whimsical word-smoothies, inside of 20 minutes?

    The signs suffer from not being blunt enough.

    On the Parisian Metro, one sees a sign that says ‘Sortie’ - and you immediately know it means ‘Exit’.

    However, reverse the situation, a French person trying find the ‘Exit’ in an Auckland Station - are more likely to find a sign which reads…

    ‘If you wish to vacate these premises, and / or and traverse to street level, please perambulate in the direction indicated by the arrow; which points towards the door, which is located hereunder.’

    Me thinks the author of this article, needs to do a bit more traveling before they’re sufficiently qualified to comment on public transport.


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