Reviews of Hotels, Flights and Vacation Rentals
Media Center


Death of the great British queue? TripAdvisor research shows rise of the queue jump generation?
  • New research from TripAdvisor shows Gen Z are butting heads with Baby Boomers and shunning waiting in line, which could spell the end of British queuing etiquette by 2068*
  • Over two thirds of Brits confess that they hate being stuck in a queue** – yet 80% of visitors face exactly that prospect at UK attractions this summer, by ignoring expert advice to book online***
  • Queue jumping on the day is fraught with risk and likely to provoke the dreaded British hard stare, research finds, as YouTuber Zac Alsop discovered the hard way when filmed trying to queue jump at popular UK attractions
  • TripAdvisor – which lists over 100,000 attractions, tours and activities available to book online – commissioned the research, backed by behavioural psychologist and queuing expert, Adrian Furnham


London, UK, 18 July, 2018 – The British love of queuing is a dying national trait, research commissioned by TripAdvisor and backed by Professor Adrian Furnham has found.


While almost three quarters of the nation (73%) claim they’ve never queue jumped, this figure is in sharp decline amongst Britain’s youth as a battle of the generations plays out in queues across the country. Generation Z (18-24 y/os) are more than twice as likely to push in front than Baby Boomers (43% Gen Z vs 18% Boomers)****.


The research identified five common techniques British queue jumpers use to cut the queue – including the ‘chat and cut’, the ‘sorry, sorry, sorry’ and the ‘quick question’. Yet despite this behaviour becoming more common in the UK, it still provokes strong reactions from other queuers, especially among the Baby Boomer generation who take more pride in observing British queuing etiquette.


More than two thirds (67%) of Baby Boomers consider queue cutting the height of bad manners, compared to more than a quarter (28%) of Gen Z. Baby Boomers are also twice as likely to confront a queue jumper in the act than they are to let it slide (31% v 15%). 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 (35%) compared to only a quarter (25%) who would confront the queue jumper.


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 are greater than ever this summer. 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 on sites like TripAdvisor 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. Similar ticket options are available across the UK at sites like Warwick Castle, Spinnaker Tower and Edinburgh Castle.


Hayley Coleman, TripAdvisor spokesperson (and serial queue skipper) offered this advice to Brits planning a day trip this summer: “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. 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.”


In a field test of the research findings, TripAdvisor set up a social experiment – filming YouTuber Zac Alsop undercover at attraction queues around the country. The experiment challenged Zac to test the most common queue jump techniques Brits confessed to, while also observing the reactions of fellow queuers – with hilarious results! Watch what happened here:




Queue Jumping Techniques

Queue Jumping Reactions


  1. The ‘open invitation’ (24%) – 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
  1. The 'hard stare' (46%) - give your most disgusted stare forcefully... into the back of the skipper's head
  1. The ‘chat and cut’ (20%) – start up a conversation with someone in a good spot in the line
  1. The 'boiler' (44%) - don't say anything but the whole encounter makes your blood boil
  1. The 'I'm going to be late' (18%) - tell a lie so people think that you are in a rush and let you push in
  1. The 'tut tut' (38%) - you don't confront the skipper, but tut and make rude comments under your breath
  1. The 'sorry, sorry, sorry' (17%) - apologise in a flurry so people in the queue let you in
  1. The 'brute force' (37%)  - use your elbows and wide stance to block the queue skipper
  1. The 'I just have a quick question' (16%) - walk to the front under the guise of asking the staff a question but continue to wait at the front
  1. The 'kill them with kindness' (36%) - smile sweetly while clearly and loudly directing them to where they must have missed the back of the queue


Behavioural psychologist and queuing expert, Professor Adrian Furnham highlighted why the research findings may force us to rethink what we mean by the British queue: “Queues can only operate smoothly when everyone understands and abides by the same social rules, but increasingly we’re seeing a younger generation willing to bend those rules, and an older generation willing to confront them when they do. As this generational gap widens, it will be harder to maintain the social and cultural norms that dictate what it means to queue ‘the British way’. In the next fifty years, the British queue as we know it could be dead.”


TripAdvisor is the world’s largest provider of tours and activities –with more than 100,000 attractions and experiences available to book around the globe, including Skip The Line access to iconic sites such as the Vatican Museums and the Eiffel Tower. For top tips on Skip The Line options this summer, go to (due to go live on 18th July).


– ENDS –


Note to editors
*To calculate the death of the queue, the researchers assessed the generational differences in the sample’s propensity to queue jump. The modal average of the propensity to queue jump increased 8 percentage points each decade. 8 percentage points were added from Gen Z (i.e. those born in approx. 1998) upwards to 100% i.e. to those born in 2068.

**Research of 1,000 respondents across the UK conducted by One Poll in May 2018 and commissioned by TripAdvisor

***According to a 2017 ‘Global Travel Activities Marketplace 2014­2020’ report by Phocuswright, 80% of gross bookings in the attractions sector are generated offline

****Full breakdown of statistics by age group available up on request

Adrian Furnham

Adrian Furnham is an expert in behavioural psychology and a firm believer in time optimising when it comes to queuing. Previously a lecturer in Psychology at Pembroke College, Oxford, he has been Professor of Psychology at University College London from 1992 to 2018. He is currently at the Norwegian Business School.


Media Enquiries

For more information and imagery please contact One Green Bean:

E                    P 020 3196 9673


Images and video content about the experiment is available upon request.


About TripAdvisor
TripAdvisor, the world's largest travel site*, enables travellers to unleash the full potential of every trip. With over 630 million reviews and opinions covering the world's largest selection of travel listings worldwide – covering approximately 7.5 million accommodations, airlines, attractions, and restaurants -- TripAdvisor provides travellers with the wisdom of the crowds to help them decide where to stay, how to fly, what to do and where to eat. TripAdvisor also compares prices from more than 200 hotel booking sites so travellers can find the lowest price on the hotel that's right for them. TripAdvisor-branded sites are available in 49 markets, and are home to the world's largest travel community of 455 million average monthly unique visitors**, all looking to get the most out of every trip. TripAdvisor: Know better. Book better. Go better.


The subsidiaries and affiliates of TripAdvisor, Inc. (NASDAQ: TRIP) own and operate a portfolio of websites under 20 other travel media brands: (including and, and


* Source: comScore Media Metrix for TripAdvisor Sites, worldwide, November 2017
** Source: TripAdvisor log files, average monthly unique visitors, Q3 2017



SOURCE TripAdvisor