"Catch up with the line. " (said to people standing in line)

xuliang

Senior Member
Chinese Mandarin
The context: It was in a train station; people are waiting in a very line for security checking. A staffer was there to make sure traffic flow is as quick as possible so it is less crowded at the point.

The staffer said:
1. "Keep in line" .
2. "Keep up with the line."
3. "Follow the line."
4. "Catch up with the line."

The staffer said that to urge the people to keep up with the line. If the person ahead of you is moving, you need to move too; if you don't move in time there will be much space between you and the person in front of you. If more than one people don't folow the line closely, the line would be extremely longer and can cause the area very crowded. For the part in bold, I am wondering if it conveys my intended meaning.Thank you.
 
  • Barque

    Senior Member
    Tamil
    As a general instruction, I think the second option, "Keep up with the line" sounds the clearest. Or perhaps "Close up the gaps, please".

    "Keep in line" means "Maintain a line/Don't spread yourself around".
    "Follow the line" means to go along a line (either an actual line drawn somewhere or a line of people).
    "Catch up with the line" sounds like something that would be said to a specific person who remained standing in one place without noticing that the line had moved ahead.
     

    xuliang

    Senior Member
    Chinese Mandarin
    As a general instruction, I think the second option, "Keep up with the line" sounds the clearest. Or perhaps "Close up the gaps, please".

    "Keep in line" means "Maintain a line/Don't spread yourself around".
    "Follow the line" means to go along a line (either an actual line drawn somewhere or a line of people).
    "Catch up with the line" sounds like something that would be said to a specific person who remained standing in one place without noticing that the line had moved ahead.
    Hi, Barque. Thank you for your detailed answer. Also, I am just wondering what you or other native speakers would say in this context, if my Option 2 is not the way you usually say. Thank you.
     

    Copyright

    Senior Member
    American English
    "Close up the line" occurs to me. "Close" as in close the door, not "close" as in too close. :)
     
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