Survey Says: NYC Subway Riders Don’t Like Surgery Ads

New York City straphangers have spoken — and they’re not fans of medical/surgery advertisements on subway train cars.

In a survey of the worst NYC subway ads, “plastic and/or cosmetic surgery ads” ranked No. 1, garnering 38 percent of the vote. It also ranked on top of another NYC subway ad list.

“Religious and/or self-help ads” finished tied for second with “floor-to-ceiling themed ads,” both of which received 21 percent.

Rounding out the bottom — or the least-disliked types of ads — were “pun-heavy ads” (12 percent), “alcohol ads” (1 percent), and “other ads” (1 percent). In the “other” ads category, the lone respondent listed anti-abortion ads as their least favorite, referring to a campaign that ran earlier this year. Here’s a complete view of the results:

Health ads were a hot topic among respondents, though one health-related ad that didn’t make the survey was the Health Department’s controversial calorie education campaign that ran in 2008.

Still fed up with a particular subway ad campaign? Let the MTA know about it — here’s instructions from the straphanger’s campaign site.

Maybe next time we will survey the worst New York City subway tunnel or station ads.

Hopefully this train doesn't contain a bunion surgery ad (Maggie Smith /

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30 Responses to Survey Says: NYC Subway Riders Don’t Like Surgery Ads

  1. brianne says:

    the ads on the subways can definitely be odd, weird and downright disgusting at times. But the ones I find most annoying are the subways that have entire cars covered in Bud Light ads. One after the other after the other saying essentially the same exact thing.

    Don’t get me wrong…I like a cold beer. But there is such thing as overkill

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