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Travel courtesy and etiquette

Being courteous makes using public transport more enjoyable for everyone.

Follow these etiquette tips and rules when travelling by train, bus, coach, ferry and light rail services in NSW.

Find out about travel offences and when fines apply.

When on board public transport, offer your seat to someone who needs it more than you. This includes people who are older, who have a disability or impaired mobility, who are pregnant or travelling with children.

Other things you can do to be considerate of others:

  • Make room for people getting on or off.
  • Do not block the doors or aisles with prams, bags or bikes and boards.
  • Do not take up more than one seat when others are standing.
  • Do not put your feet on the seats.
  • Use headphones with mobile devices and keep the volume down.
  • Speak quietly when on the phone.
  • Put your rubbish in the bin.
  • Cover your mouth when you cough and sneeze.

Threatening, offensive or unsafe behaviours are not tolerated and fines may apply.

Do not vandalise trains, buses, ferries and light rail services or stations, stops and wharves in any way. Fines apply.

If you notice a graffiti offender or vandal damaging public transport carriages, vehicles, vessels, shelters or facilities notify staff immediately or call the police on 000.

If you have information regarding vandals, you can report it anonymously to Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

Certain carriages are on selected intercity train services are designated quiet carriages. They provide you with a quiet environment when travelling longer distances.

You will find quiet carriages on the following services:

  • Blue Mountains Line
  • Southern Highlands Line
  • South Coast Line
  • Central Coast & Newcastle Line

A quiet carriage is usually the first, last and two middle carriages of an 8-carriage train, the first and last carriages of a 4-carriage train, the last carriage of a 2-carriage train. Look for signs on the train or platform.

When in a quiet carriage, please:

  • Put your mobile phone on silent
  • Move into an adjoining carriage to have a conversation with a fellow passenger or on the phone.
  • Use headphones with mobile devices and keep the volume low so it can’t be heard by others.

If you want to be able to make noise, move to another carriage.

The following behaviors are offenses under the Passenger Transport Regulation 2007 which can incur a fine.

  • Persons must not use offensive language on buses, ferries, light rail, trains or at stations.
  • Persons must not wilfully interfere with the comfort of others on buses, ferries, light rail, trains or at stations.
  • Persons must not put their feet on seats on buses, ferries, light rail, trains or at stations.
  • Persons must not smoke on buses, ferries, light rail, trains or at stations.
  • People must not drink alcohol on buses, ferries, light rail, trains or at stations. Note, this does not apply if the alcohol was supplied by, or with the permission of, the operator of the bus, ferry or train concerned. Drink, in relation to alcohol, includes being in possession of an opened container of alcohol.
  • Passengers must not distract bus drivers.
  • Passengers must not block bus, light rail or train doors.
  • Persons must not obstruct ferry gang planks, wharves or stations.

Penalties

Offence Penalty notice Maximum penalty
Putting feet on seats $100 $1,100
Travelling without a valid ticket/card $200 $550
Littering $200 $1,100
Smoking $300 $550
Drinking alcohol $400 $1,100
Offensive language, offensive behaviour or spitting $400 $1,100
Blocking doors or interfering with equipment $400 $5,500
Damaging vehicles or property through graffiti or vandalism $400 $2,200
Trespassing on railway land $400 $5,500
Throwing an object in, at or from a public passenger vehicle or station $200 $2,200