Elevator Etiquette

Background: This week is Spring Break for us! So in honor of vacations, I decided to post “Elevator Etiquette” because it is an easy manner to cover while you are staying in a hotel somewhere. We covered this manner while we stayed for a week in a highrise near Disneyland.

Attention Getter: An elevator. ( I am always amazed at how fascinated my kids are with elevators. It doesn’t matter if we are at the “most magical place on earth” or visiting my small hometown, as long as the hotel has a pool and an elevator, they are in heaven.)

Manner: 1. Give the exit-ers space. Stand back from the doors and let those who are on the elevator exit first, before you board. (If you do nothing else, teach your children this courtesy!)

2. Let ladies board first if it is reasonable. Don’t board the elevator if it is too crowded. Wait for the next one.

3. Once on board move to the back of the car, turn around and face the door. (My husband likes to stand at the front of the elevator and face the whole crowd, just to get in the riders’ heads- and bug me.) Keep your distance-about a body width-between other riders if possible.

4. Keep conversation and noise to a minimum.

5. If you are near the buttons, you may have added responsibility. You may push the buttons for others so that there is not a lot of reaching. (We taught the kids to say “Which floor do you need?” ) Only push the button once. Despite what my kids think, pushing the button multiple times will not get the elevator there any faster. If the light is on, the button has been pushed. You might need to hold the ‘door open’ button if you see someone trying to board.

Photo: Matt Ward www.iseethelight.com

6. If you are near the front, you might need to step out of the elevator and hold the door with your hand, if several people are exiting but you are not. Let ladies exit first if reasonable.

If you want to know more about elevator etiquette, I found this informative website that covers everything you would want to know. It seemed really helpful for those that use elevators on a daily basis at work or in an apartment building.

Practice: It was fun to do this manner while we were on vacation because we used an elevator multiple times a day. Each time we used the elevator, it provided new teaching opportunities and new situations to discuss. The kids got to push buttons for people, wait for the next elevator, learn how to load and unload with suitcases, etc. The kids got several chances to interact with all kinds of people, and they learned from others’ bad and good examples.

Follow-Up: Teach your kids the importance of taking the stairs whenever possible. We have an elevator at our local recreation center, and my kids want to ride it every time we go there although it only goes up one floor. Our rule of thumb is, we don’t take the elevator unless we have a stroller. I’ve tried to teach them it is good for our hearts and our bodies to take the stairs (but they still ask). We actually took the stairs on vacation sometimes too. We would have races between the elevator people and the stair people. They learned that it can be just as fast – if not faster – to take the stairs.

5 thoughts on “Elevator Etiquette”

  1. From someone who has been on both sides of embarrassing elevator situations, I would add “If you’ve just had lunch at Taco Bell, just take the stairs.”

  2. I wish some adults would learn this same etiquette! It’s so bad where I work, drives me crazy.

  3. So glad to see this:) I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been at a hotel with high school students who have no elevator etiquette. Of course, as an adviser, I take the opportunity to sternly teach them aka yell.

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