Ferry Etiquette: Mind Your Manners

As ferry commuters, we are all too familiar with breaches of simple manners and social conduct. The bore on the cell phone; the verbose stranger broadcasting his or her views on every conceivable subject; the sprawler splayed across several seats; and the gate rusher storming to the front of the line are just a few of the miscreants in need of some reform.

But perhaps the greatest violator of public decorum is the inebriate, and we have more than a few of them on the ferries during the cocktail hour.

Perhaps these people are beyond help.

But Syndi Seid, recognized as a leading authority on business protocol and etiquette, has a few suggestions for those of us who recognize our own need for self improvement.

As founder of San Francisco-based Advanced Etiquette Worldwide, Syndi helps senior executives, business professionals and main-line employees overcome their fears and insecurities to find poise, confidence and authority in any social situation, anywhere in the world.

In one memorable monthly etiquette tip she addressed the issue of public tippling dockside or while in transit on the water, and ways to avoid overdoing it.

But she’s hardly a scold.

In fact, she cautions us to avoid harmful stereotyping: “When a person is called a drunk it implies the person suffers from alcoholism. It means the person overindulges and becomes inebriated on a regular basis. Often the person doesn’t even know he or she is a drunk, which also means they have a dependency on alcohol. Be careful when you call someone a drunk.”

Instead she has provided a series of hints on overcoming our own problems.

For example: “know your limit” and “keep hydrated.”

She also suggests eating plenty of food, and simply applying some self-control if drinking means the difference between success and failure in a social setting.

Syndi offers a full suite of classes, seminars, and workshops on proper social behavior, and is the author of several books on the subject.

Check her out at