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10 Weird Elevator Etiquette Rules


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Ladies First, Unless They're Second
In everyday work situations, a gentleman need not let a lady out first. David De Lossy/Photodisc/Thinkstock
In everyday work situations, a gentleman need not let a lady out first. David De Lossy/Photodisc/Thinkstock

This next pearl of elevator etiquette comes from the self-styled "Manners Mentor" Maralee McKee. (If you question her commitment to alliteration, check out her latest book, Manners That Matter for Moms.) McKee takes a studied approach to the age-old elevator-boarding question: ladies first?

The answer: It depends on the context. In a social situation — riding down to dinner at a dungeon-themed restaurant, riding up to the nosebleed section at a Sting concert — it's customary for ladies to board and exit first.

A busy office building is a different story, she says. In the workplace, women and men expect to be treated as equals. In an elevator, that means you should be equally unfriendly to everyone. If you're a dude and you're first in line, board first.

Of course, this may vary by U.S. region or country. If you're female, and your male colleague steps aside so you can board first, say thank you and enjoy the courtesy.


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