Tube problems that everyone can relate to

Catching a stranger’s eye is a traumatic experience

Unless you’re among the chosen few who have the luxury of rolling out of bed ten minutes before a lecture (no resentment here, I promise), you find yourself at the mercy of London’s public transport, which probably means that, however grudgingly, you had to accept the Underground as a necessary evil.

In celebration of the countless hours we’ve spent stuck in the middle of a tunnel on the District line, here are some very relatable tube problems.

Rush hour

We’ve all been there: it’s a Monday morning and you’re in a mad frenzy to make it to your 9am. You dash down the escalators (on the left-hand side – you may be in a hurry, but you still have some manners), catapult into the platform and watch the overcrowded train approach with a sinking feeling of horror – and then squeeze in anyway.

Your fellow commuters are savage beasts that trod on your toes and drive their elbows into your face, you’re boiling hot, air becomes an abstract concept, and when you finally get off the train after what feels like centuries, you find yourself dizzy with wonder at the fact that you made it out alive and in one piece (although that may just be the oxygen deprivation speaking).

Human interaction

As far as socially awkward situations go, travelling on the Tube is unparalleled.

Catching a stranger’s eye is a traumatic experience; accidentally brushing your hand against someone else’s as you’re groping for a rail to hold on to will most likely leave permanent scars on your psyche.

And then there’s that embarrassing moment when the person sitting next to you realises that you’ve been reading their texts over their shoulder – or, worse still, when you can clearly tell that someone is reading your texts over your shoulder, and you can’t even confront them about it because it would be a violation of the universally accepted rules of Underground conduct.

Keeping yourself busy

Honestly, what are you supposed to do when you’ve already examined the other passengers’ shoes in great detail and learned all the ads by heart, and there are still seven stops to go?


And not just of the ‘severe’ kind, but the small everyday apocalypses when you have to wait over two minutes for the next Central line train and you feel painfully deceived because as far as you’re concerned that doesn’t come anywhere near ‘good service’.

Not getting your Oyster ready

Or trying to exit the station using your student ID and failing miserably, while a queue of bloodthirsty Londoners clearly suffering from attitude issues forms behind your back. Sorry, guys.

Although it may not seem like it, taking the Tube does actually have its benefits; for one, it gives you something to complain about once you’ve exhausted both the dreary weather conditions and Donald Trump.