How to cut in a queue

THE ‘chat and cut’ and ‘sorry, sorry, sorry’ have been named as some of the underhand techniques Brits are using to jump queues.

Researchers found more than one in four admit to cutting in front of someone in a line, with the ‘open invitation’ method – when a gap opens up which you can pretend you thought was the end of the line – the most popular.

How to cut in a queue

Others rely on the ‘chat and cut’ technique to push in, which involves finding someone in the queue to start a conversation with and staying at that spot in the line.

Pretending to be late so others let you in ahead of them and apologising in a fluster are also popular among Brits.

Some even admit to heading to the front of the queue under the guise of having a quick question to ask a member of staff.

The TripAdvisor research also found the British love of queuing is in sharp decline among the nation’s youth.

How to cut in a queue

Generation Z (18-24 year-olds) are more than twice as likely to push in front in a queue than Baby Boomers.

And despite more than two thirds of Baby Boomers saying they consider queue jumping the height of bad manners, just 28 per cent of Gen Z think the same.

Baby Boomers are also twice as likely to confront a queue jumper in the act than they are to let it slide (31 per cent v 15 per cent).

This is in stark contrast to Gen Z, with more than a third of 18-24 year olds taking a ‘no worries’ attitude to someone cutting in front of them compared to only a quarter who would confront the queue jumper.

Hayley Coleman, serial queue jumper and TripAdvisor spokesperson said: “The British love of queuing is a cliché we all know, but in truth most of us hate being stuck in a queue – yet we spend two to three days a year waiting in line.

“So, if you want to save time and skip a queue this summer, the message is simple: book online, and in advance.

Top five queue jumping techniques:

1. The ‘Open Invitation’: If there is space between people queuing, act as if you think the gap is at the end of the queue and join the line there (24%)

2. The ‘Chat and Cut’: Start up a conversation with someone in a good spot in the line (20%)

3. The 'I'm Going to be Late': Tell a lie so people think that you are in a rush and let you push in (18%)

4. The 'Sorry, Sorry, Sorry’: Apologise in a flurry so people in the queue let you in (17%)

5. The 'I Just Have a Quick Question': Walk to the front under the guise of asking the staff a question but continue to wait at the front (16%)

“This is easier to do than many people think – TripAdvisor has more than 100,000 experiences, tours and activities available to book online – and you’ll even avoid the wrath of the dreaded hard stare from your fellow queuers.”

With peak holiday season in full swing, and the hot weather likely to boost visitor numbers to UK attractions, the prospect of being caught in the middle of an awkward queue confrontation is greater than ever.

Yet, only one in five attraction visitors heed advice to book ahead – even though many of the busiest attractions offer Skip The Line ticket options that can be booked in advance and which allow you to skip the queues altogether.

For example, the Coca-Cola London Eye, where queues can exceed one hour during peak times, offers a Skip The Line ticket option that lets you bypass the queues and can be booked on TripAdvisor for as little as £33.30.

If you've lived in the world you've waited in a line, and at some point in your life—if not many—someone has cut in the line and made you wait longer. There are a variety of line cutters, some with good reasons and others without, but it's generally infuriating all the same. Here's how to deal with people who cut in line, regardless of the situation.

Analyze the Line

When people wait in line, in essence they're gathering one behind the other in single file—or at least that's how it's supposed to work. Unfortunately, not every line is created equal. Some curve because there's not enough room for a straight line in the store, or some waiting areas are larger than others—such as the ones at amusement parks—to accommodate groups waiting together. Lines at stores will occasionally offer some sort of designated method of organization, even sometimes offering a hired helper to move things along efficiently. Other stores will just let their customers figure things out on their own. Sometimes it's the worst of both worlds, such as boarding a flight, where an organization scheme is offered that's hardly followed. It's in situations lacking this organization that the problems tend to occur most often, but are also the type of situations that require the most sympathy. When there is a seemingly tacit organization, it's very, very easy for any person to misinterpret the rules of the line. Before you make any decisions about what to do, know what kind of line you're in. If the instructions are clear, you can point them out. If they're not, you may just want to let the issue go. In the event you do want to say something to the cutter, however, tread carefully. It may have been an honest mistake.

Resist the Urge to Get Angry

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People make mistakes often, so you don't want to bite their heads off. Back in college, I was waiting in line for 20 minutes to make a deposit at the school ATM. It always had a ridiculous single-file line, but it was a half of a mile to the next ATM. Another student pulled a chat and cut in front of me (see the video up top for a demonstration) very early on in the line and I didn't say anything because I thought he was talking to his friends. When he tried to use the ATM, I'd built up so much anger that I lashed out at him. The entire line then got mad at me, because he played the victim. In retrospect, I think he honestly had no idea I was in line. I tend to be quiet and easy to miss if I don't intend to be heard. When I angrily told him I was there first and I thought he was just talking to his friends, the rest of the line suddenly saw a raging little asshole emerge from the ether. Although I earned my rightful spot back in line, it was with an angry mob at my back. When you bring anger into the situation, don't expect things to work in your favor.

Know the Three Rules of Confronting Line Cutters

When you do want to approach a line cutter to let them know they just violated the sacred social code of waiting, it's important to remember the following three things:

  1. Don't get angry. (See above for an explanation why.)
  2. Ask someone near by—preferably behind you—if they saw that person cut in the line. If they did, you now have an ally who has a vested interest in the outcome of the situation.
  3. Confront the cutter as soon as possible. You'll lose your chance if you wait.

When you confront the line cutter, be polite. It's possible they made a mistake and you'll feel like an idiot and a jerk if you overreact to something that's ultimately not a big deal. A simple sentence like, "Excuse me, but I believe you just cut in line" is forceful enough to get your point across while still remaining open to the possibility that you could be wrong and they were simply joining their friend to wait with them in solidarity. In the event that they argue and things get out of hand, you either need to let it go (if the cutter is willing to drop the issue, too) or find a manager/person of authority and ask them to handle the problem for you. But something as unimportant as a person cutting in line should really never escalate to that level. The important thing to remember is that while it's rude for people to cut in line, you can't fight every battle and there are few circumstances where this situation isn't a tiny blip of a battle. Most of the time, it's simply not worth fighting. Stay strong, and just try to let things go whenever you can.

More Advice From You

I put the dilemma of line cutting out on the social networks the other day to see what you all had to say about the matter. Here's a selection of the advice from the crowd.

Saul suggests a veiled threat:

If it's a man, I say "don't cut," and if he argues I say "I have a gun."

Matt McCormick suggests giving them a taste of their own medicine and pretending like they don't exist either:

If they cut me, I will act like I didn't see them and walk into them. Even better if I have loud big shopping bags.

Luis Sierra says just deal with it:

I usually don't care, I've learned to be a bit more patient when I can. People can be in a rush, scumbags, or just stupid. Chill.

Mikayla Schneiter takes the simple approach:

A simple, polite, I'm-trying-to-be-helpful-here "Hey man, the line starts back there, just so you know" should cut it. There are a lot of situations that could make it look like someone's trying to cut in line, when in reality s/he's making an honest mistake or doing something pretty irrelevant.

And my cousin Max Gold explains what to do when a drunk guy cuts in front of you at a taco truck:

A drunk guy cut me at a taco truck the other night. He was a lot bigger than me. He explained that in many cities, that it's okay to cut people. I asked what cities? He said New York. I said no, it's not okay there either. Then he said "oh, it's not?" and apologized and bought me a taco.

At intensity akin to road rage, having someone cut in front of us in a line we’ve been patiently waiting in gives birth to insurmountable fury. Staring at the back of the head of someone who’s cut in front is an exercise of imagination. What should we do? What should we say?

This article aims to walk you through a calm, collected, yet effective methodology to dealing with those who rudely cut in front of you in line. Rather than falling victim to the emotional response you’d naturally feel in the heat of the moment, you can save yourself the stress whilst also encouraging the wrongdoer to join the end of the line you’re in.

Establish and Communicate the Governing Structure of the Queue

Every line / queue is an organized attempt at managing a population. The process depends on a certain governing structure in order to operate effectively. Most individuals who see a line tend to know that they should join the end of it, not the front. Other rules can make their mark in shaping the line you’re in however.

Those who have a reservation for example, may need to cut the line in order to walk through to their appointment. Women with small children may be given priority in a certain line you’re in. Other queues, may abide by a spot reservation process; in which people can step away from the queue once they’ve established their spot in it.

In order to effectively deal with someone who breaks the rules of a certain line / queue, you first need to fully understand the governing structure of the line you’re in. Once you do, you’d be armed to first calmly remind those who cut the line of the rules which govern the queue you’re in.

Ensure that you always assume the individual in question to be operating from a place of naivety rather than malice. When you do approach them, mind your manners. Apologize for disturbing them, tell them that you saw them enter the line, and that they broke the rules by which this particular line is formed. Cite the particular rules the individual broke in their attempt to join the line you’re in. If it’s simply the first come first serve component of all queues in existence, then cite that as the obvious rule they broke.

Elicit Backup From Others in Line

As you lay out the structure of the queue you’re in to the perpetrator, make it a focus to gain the approval of others in the line or an authority figure which oversees the line. While you interact with the individual in question, look around for people nodding along or simply observing the interaction. If you do see someone following the interaction you’re a part of, begin to involve them in the conversation.

The goal of this step would be to simply get the numbers on your side. Having another person to back you up is a drastic improvement from just you being alone against the line cutter. When you do involve onlookers in an attempt to discipline the line cutter in question, make it seem like you’re not absolutely sure of your stance on the issue. Form your invitation to join the intervention as a question asking for confirmation of the rules.

Ask an onlooker: “Excuse me; this line is formed on a first come first serve basis, correct?”

Onlooker: “Yes, everybody here joined the back of the line when they walked into the building.”

The invitation of others in the form of a question gives them a better excuse to back you up than simply eliciting an emotional response from them. Hopefully as you elicit the backup of other individuals which may have found it difficult to speak up by themselves, the person who cut the line in front of you feels the pressure to join the back of the line. Remember; try your best to curb your emotional response to their inappropriate deed. Walk yourself through the steps of this intervention process in a methodical and calm manner.

Use the Vulnerable to Stress Your Point

If the person still hasn’t budged, a final tool you have in your pocket is the strategic guidance of public attention. The most effective thing to draw attention – in regards to painting the line cutter in a bad light – is the vulnerability of certain individuals in the line you’re in. Pregnant women, elderly people, and those with a disability, all do well to draw out an emotional reaction from other people.

Draw attention toward how the individual in question hurts those who are vulnerable in the line behind them. For instance, bring attention to how long the elderly man has been standing, and how immoral it is for the line cutter to disregard that fact. Use a calm attempt at embarrassing/ shaming as a tool of behavior change in both the line-cutter as well as the people who are in line with you.

The line-cutter will be pressured to join the back of the line while the people around you will be enticed to back you up in your attempts. You may even give birth to a reaction from others which allows you to no longer partake in the intervention as it plays out.

How to cut in a queue

Line-cutting, queue-jumping, call it what you will: it’s the thing that expats love to hate about China, and the one thing that seems to stick in the minds of Westerners about Chinese who travel through their lands. Many dismiss the behavior as a mark of uncivility, using it as added fuel for their uninformed beliefs – but can it really be written off in such a way?

Aside from bucket hats, fanny packs, and zoom-lens cameras, line-cutting is typically what people point to when identifying a Chinese tourist. But why has the unsavory behavior become so synonymous with Chinese mainlanders, while their Hong Kong and Taiwanese counterparts escape such complaints unscathed? Why is it that seemingly everyone in Chinese cities can line up perfectly on the arrows in front of the subway door but as soon as the car pulls up and the doors open, a frail-looking old lady comes scurrying right past the line, pushing against the amoebic glob of people trying to exit, using strength from an unknown source to elbow others out of the way, and finally leaving barely enough time for the patient waiters to climb in after her?

While most Chinese people seem similarly disgusted and confused by the behavior, there is a possible explanation that helps put everything into perspective.

How to cut in a queue

Most modern Chinese cities are made up in large part by migrant workers, people of lower economic standing from the west of China who move to the east for better opportunities. In fact, in places like Shanghai, migrants make up as much as a third of the total population.

In their rural countryside hometowns, the migrant workers were unbound by skyscrapers and convenience stores on every block, living instead on their own tracts of wide open land. There, although the farming profits were minimal, they could work for themselves and answer to no one but the turning of the seasons. In the cities, everything is different. The air is stifling and the people endless. Queues are formed for everything from buying a train ticket to waiting for a milk tea. For someone who grew up only looking out for himself, it’s understandable that the new arrival is unfazed by the new social customs staring him in the face. He cuts the line; he gets to the front faster.

That doesn’t mean the blame rests solely on the shoulders of migrant workers, of course. If you look at the expat population in Shanghai or Beijing, even while they ceaselessly complain about the line-cutters, they’re pushing ahead of people themselves. It’s natural to follow the bad habits of others, and when everyone else around you is doing it, it almost becomes necessary to do it yourself lest you get lost in the crowd and thrown back by the constant onslaught of people.

How to cut in a queue

Though such a theory may appear overly simplistic, it holds water when used as a lens through which to look at Hong Kong, where the demographics are very different. Hong Kongers have a culture of hiring foreign domestic workers, but those people only make up about four to five percent of the special administrative region’s total population and cannot be called migrant workers, as they come from outside of China (usually Indonesia and the Philippines). Anyone who has been to both Hong Kong and the mainland knows that the cultures are very different. Therefore, it appears not only rude but racist say that all Chinese people are uncivilized, because it is simply not true. Hong Kongers, despite going by that term, are also Chinese. Line-cutting is not a matter of ethnicity. It is a matter of demographics and survival.

As for the little old lady shoving people out of the way to get a seat on the metro, she’s likely doing that because more and more young people refuse to give their seats up to her. They look down at their phones, engrossed in their Chinese historical dramas. They may see the woman, but their phones provide a convenient excuse for hogging the seats. And besides, doesn’t someone who lived through the China of the ’60s and ’70s deserve a break every now and then?

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do not cut the queue

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cut the queue up

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roll feed (do not cut)

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suap gulung (jangan potong)

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no jobs are in the queue

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jangan pedulikan dia

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@乂???? 乂 ????????乂:yang pertama: tidak tau yang kedua: 254645

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How to cut in a queue

The Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM) is out to get queue-jumping bullies as they reportedly issued 23 summonses in Operation Potong ‘Q’ and even several cars seen in various dashcam videos.

According to the Police Traffic Enforcement and Investigation Department (JSPT), a total of 40 summonses were issued during an operation held by the Seremban Traffic Investigation and Enforcement team.

How to cut in a queue

A junction in Seremban where road users tend to cut the queue

Out of 40 summonses, 23 were issued for jumping the line. That is more than half of the summonses issued during the operation.

But that is not all, JSPT teams from other states have also issued summonses to queue jumpers seen in various videos uploaded on social media.

One of which is to a red Perodua Myvi for dangerously cutting in front of an SUV. JSPT had immediately started an investigation when the video went viral on social media. The 21-year-old Myvi driver has since been arrested after he surrendered himself to the Port Dickson police.

The driver claimed he had been trying to refuel his car since 8am, but when he cut the queue a man appeared to pull a knife and “threatened to stab him”.

Tuesday 28 September 2021 15:42, UK

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How to cut in a queue0:28

A man appeared to pull a knife on a driver who tried to jump the queue at a London petrol station, a witness has told Sky News.

Stefan Silva filmed the violent interaction as it unfolded before stepping in to calm the angry man down.

The 29-year-old said he had been queuing at a Shell garage in Welling, London, for about half-an-hour when a blue Citroen tried to push to the front of the queue at around 1.30pm on Monday.

“He tried to cut across the traffic lights from the other side of the road. So he was obviously illegally driving on the wrong side of the road to cut across.

“So he quickly pushed in.”

A man – who had been a passenger in another car – walked up to the vehicle and appeared to pull out a knife, before being thrown on the bonnet of the car as it lurched forward.

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After it came to a stop he kicked both wing mirrors off the car while threatening the driver that he was going to “stab him”, Mr Silva said.

“He was banging on the side of the car and when he went to the front of the car the old man in the car tried to run him over. So he mounted the bonnet.

“After that he was still banging on the blue car but it wasn’t going anywhere because of the traffic.”

Mr Silva, an engineer from Kent, called the man over to try and calm the situation – telling him it was “not worth it for a bit of fuel”.

The man then left after being told the police had been called.

The driver told Mr Silva he had been trying to fill up his car since 8am, but had been told to come back after 1pm once there had been a delivery: “He told me he was on his reserve, but I said it is probably the same for everyone else who had been queuing up.”

The Metropolitan Police told Sky News: “Police were called at 14:37hrs on Monday, 27 September to reports of a disturbance involving two motorists outside a petrol garage in Bellegrove Road, Welling.

“Officers attended and found no trace of either vehicle. No injuries were reported and no suspects were identified.

“We are aware of footage online which appears to show the incident and will review this as part of our ongoing enquiries.”

How to cut in a queue

It’s no secret that December is one of the busiest times of the year and your to do list grows instead of shrinks!

You’ve got your endless present ideas, Christmas parties to attend and host, and family holidays to plan. The end of the year is approaching fast, and it’s easy to forget about important decisions, preparations and planning for the new year amongst the festive celebrations.

So – here’s our friendly nudge to anyone thinking about seeking out aged care options – Start Now!

Cut the Christmas queue by starting the process now.

How to cut in a queue

Here’s a universal truth: no one likes to wait in line. It’s tiring, time-consuming and frustrating. So as highly experienced independent aged care consultants, believe us when we say that Christmas is the busiest time in residential care and if you don’t start the process now, you will be waiting in a long queue come New Year.

By getting on top of your loved one’s residential aged care now, you’ll cut out the waitlists, skip the queue and start on a strong footing for 2022.

Here’s how Well Placed Care can help you skip the queue…

Finding the right aged care option isn’t always easy, especially if you’re trying to do this on your own. The time and knowledge required of you to obtain documentation and find appropriate care is often limited. We know that many of the processes involved in the aged care system can be complex and time consuming.

By letting us take care of the necessary details, we’ll cut your time in half and have you ready to go before the madness of the festive season descends on the residential care space!

We’ll provide a high-quality advocacy & consultancy service in a short time-frame:

How to cut in a queue

  1. Our years of industry experience means we’ll be able to efficiently put together a list of high-quality aged care facilities for your family to review. Not only will this cut out the time you’d put into researching facilities, but you’re assured complete transparency and honesty from us because we operate as independent aged care consultants meaning we have no affiliations with any facilities.
  2. We have long term positive relationships with a large pool of quality care providers in Melbourne. This means we can negotiate aged care fees, secure various discounts and get priority placements on your behalf.
  3. We’ll support you through the minefield of bureaucracy, administration & paperwork.

We want you to experience the benefits of being proactive and not reactive.

By being proactive, you’re allowing space to free yourself of stress and instead enjoy the festivities with your family. You can relax with the knowledge that you’ve set up a high-quality care plan for your loved one and secured their spot in an aged care facility that will meet their individual care needs.

Find out how we can start your aged care journey here.

Are you worried your loved one will miss out on Christmas if they’re in residential care?

How to cut in a queue

A part from being busy this time of year, another reason why people don’t seek out residential care for their loved ones is a fear that they’ll miss out on Christmas with the family.

If you have a loved one in permanent care, do not worry.

They will always have the freedom and flexibility to come and go as they please, and to be with your family on all kinds of special occasions such as Christmas. Provided their clinical needs are met, your loved one can stay 52 nights away per year from their facility (outside of COVID-19 restrictions). These days can be broken up into segments of weeks, days or weekly events like having a meal every Saturday night with the family.

This is our gift to you – starting strong in your aged care journey, being prepared and skipping the waitlist.

Start on the front foot and contact our independent aged care specialist Pauline Healy today.

From seeking help in your home, applying for aged care assessments, to more permanent care, Pauline will answer all your questions and set you on the right path to find the best fit and quality care for you and your family.

Singapore, other than known as a fine city with people who are master complainers, is also known for its love of queues. In fact, there have been running jokes about how a Singaporean will join a queue, even if they don’t know what it’s for. Queueing is a national pastime, but as with every queue, there will come another phenomenon as well, the cutting of queues.

Go to the bus interchanges, MRT platforms, banks and ATMs, even food courts and you’d see this taking place. Singaporean aunties are known as the masters of cutting queues, with valid reasons, because they tend to get away with it.

Here are 6 annoying ways Singaporean aunties have cut the queue like they own it, have you seen them in action before?

There’s no queue what?
This method lagi best, act blur to the max. They’ll pretend not to see the long line snaking behind and just step in front of the first person in the queue, and if nobody comments, she’ll just go up and get her stuff and walk away gleefully, knowing that she’s outwitted you suckers who’s still waiting in line.

I should go first
The older generation has this concept in mind: I’m the elder so I have the right to go first. It could be due to our Asian upbringing, or it could be due to Singapore’s veneration of the Pioneer generation this year. We wouldn’t mind letting you go first, after all it’s only one person, but would it kill you to be polite about it, instead of taking the entire situation for granted?

I dare you to make noise, lai lah.
Just like we have lao bengs and lao lians in Singapore, we also have fierce Singaporean aunties in our midst. They might think that they’re right, or they know that they’re wrong, but if you want to fight with them, they’ll welcome you with both arms. After all, it wouldn’t reflect well on you if you’re STOMP-ed quarreling with an old auntie on queue matters, right?

Aiyo, why must bully poor auntie, just me only mah, tolong lah
But as some aunties take the high-handed route, some chose to go low instead. It’s just like the philosophy, 吃软不吃硬, they’ll make themselves out to be so pitiful and make you out to be the bad person for trying to accuse them of doing something wrong. It’s best to just leave them alone and just suck thumb.

Eh, why raise your voice, I just go behind only lor, walao eh
And then there are those who knows it’s impossible to cut queue, but still want to get the last word in. It’s similar to the previous point, except that instead of making themselves out to be pitiful, they make you out to be ungracious and rude, so if they don’t get what they want, they don’t want you to be happy as well. It’s like if I’m going down, you’re going down with me.

Aiyo, auntie so old so pitiful, can let me go first?
And this, we say, is the best method of all. They’ll ask you to let them go first. On your part, you can’t refuse because to do so means you have no respect for the elderly, you are ungracious and super niao, three qualities that won’t endear you to fellow Singaporeans.

It may surprise you to learn that the traditional queue system where people are served in order of arrival, first to last, is the worst way to quickly process people waiting in line.

But this is the conclusion of a new paper by two researchers from the University of Southern Denmark (SDU).

Professor Lars Peter Østerdal and Assistant Professor Trine Tornøe Platz from the Department of Business and Economics, SDU, have published their results as a working paper in the Discussion Papers on Business and Economics by the University of Southern Denmark.

Traditional queues maximize the overall waiting time

They examined a situation where a facility offers a service that opens at a particular time. It can be a ticket sale opening online, a doctor's phone line or a physical queue such as a traffic jam.

In all situations, there is some form of bottleneck, which means that not all will be served at the same time. The participants must decide when to join the queue and assess how long they expect to wait in it.

"The traditional way to settle a queue — called first-in-first-out — is perhaps what many associate with a normal and fair queue. Those who have been in the queue the longest will be served first when there is availability," says Østerdal.

According to Østerdal, this unfortunately results in most people queuing for the longest possible time, and in their study, the way the queue is organised caused the participants to join the queue too early.

"A lot of people have the incentive to join the queue early, which means that they stand in line for a long time. Of all the options available to them, this is the worst one," he says.

Østerdal and Platz describe the first-in-first-out queue principle as a curse.

In complete contrast, the researchers suggest that a last-in-first-out system, where the newest arrival is always served first, could be the best possible way to manage a queue; at least in the situations they are investigating. This is because people change their behaviour according to how the queue is managed. If the last arrivals are prioritised first, then the people watching the queue change their mind about when they should join.

Queue principle controls when people start to queue

"It is a highly provocative result," says Mogens Fosgerau, professor of transport policy and behaviour at the Danish Technical University. Fosgerau emphasizes that the research presents a theoretical model where people can control how the queue is managed and have a sense of how long the queue will take at certain times.

"We assume that people act strategically. This means that people adjust when they join the queue according to the queue principle ruling the situation. The core question is what happens when people respond to the way the queue is managed," says Østerdal.

"We look at what happens in the end, when people have adapted their behaviour in a way that no one benefits by doing it differently. If everyone arrived last, some would benefit from joining the queue early. So we cannot have a situation where everyone joins the queue at the last possible minute,” he says.

“During the first-in-first-out system, a large amount of people will typically join the queue right away. Then there is some time where no one joins the queue. And then people start to arrive slowly again.”

“With the last-in-first-out principle there will always be people being served. In this system, there are no great leaps and bounds, and people continue to arrive a little faster than they are served," he says.

Less time waiting in virtual queues

While this sounds attractive, it may not be particularly socially acceptable to stroll down to the bakery on a Sunday morning and jump to the front of the queue, passing those who started queuing hours before opening time.

Neither Østerdal or Fosgerau expect the last-in-first-out system to catch on when it comes to physical queues in the supermarket or traffic jams on the highway, but it could be used to reduce waiting times in telephone and Internet queues.

As an example they mention the situation when the annual tax statements are released online — about 4.5 million in the state of Denmark — and hordes of impatient taxpayers rush in to check their taxes.

But Fosgerau also sees how some physical queues could be made to move faster by taking the last arrival first. For example, the large queues that sometimes develop when aircraft are waiting to take off from large airports. A faster queue means fewer delays. The question is is whether those waiting in the queue behave rationally, and if it is possible to manage the queue. An airport certainly makes that possible.

"Aviation companies have a lot of experience and are constantly making calculations on queue situations, so they would be able to manage the planes in such a way that follows the last-in-first-out principle. And in this situation the airport is in full control of managing the aircraft, so it provides a concrete example where delays could be reduced," says Fosgerau.