The elevator is such a convenience in buildings nowadays that we take it for granted when we need to access other floors in multi-storey buildings. Yet in this time and age, it is surprising that people still do not know how to use elevators properly.
They crowd around the entrance and rush in the moment the doors open without even allowing the occupants inside to exit first. Some use their shopping trolleys like a battering ram to intimidate others into allowing them to get in first. That is Malaysian kiasuism at its ugliest.
We should use the elevators like we use other public facilities. Courtesy and politeness should be the order of the day. The following is a list of good elevator etiquettes that I have compiled from experience and observing other elevator users, polite and inconsiderate ones, in my weekly jaunts to shopping malls.
1. Adhere to queuing rules. First come first served. If you are in a rush, the stairs are a faster alternative.
2. Stand aside to allow occupants of the elevator to come out before getting in. It is inconsiderate to push your way in when people are still coming out.
3. Hold the door for others to get in if you are the first or only person inside an elevator. Many times, I had the door closing on me after the person before me had walked in, with both hands empty and morosely watched as the door hit my wheelchair.
4. Hold the door open for others if you are standing beside the control panel. Likewise close the door when no one else wants to get in or out.
5. Thank the person holding the door open for you.
6. Move all the way to the back to allow more people to get in. Don’t stand right in front of the elevator even when there is enough space at the back to hold another five persons.
7. If you are deep at the back when the elevator reaches your floor, be polite and ask those in front of you to give way instead of pushing your way out. Say something like: “Excuse me, this is my floor.” Thank them when you are out.
8. Avoid taking the elevators if you are coughing or sneezing repeatedly from influenza. Some things are not meant to be shared. This is one of them.
9. Don’t push a wheelchair without asking if assistance is needed. Most time it is not. The wheelchair is an extension of the user’s body. Pushing the wheelchair without asking is like pushing a non-disabled person on the shoulder, which is not only rude but could cause the person to fall from the unanticipated action.
10. And lastly, hold that fart!