In addition to informal situations such as ticket lines and bus queues, more or less official "queues" may be set up to control access to accommodation, hospital beds, installation of services (telephone, electricity, and other utilities), scarce commodities or rights (including travel visas and other forms of authorization). By-passing any such queue, or a number of places in that queue, may be accomplished by influence on those controlling the queue or on those in it. This influence may vary from intimidation, through blackmail, to bribery, or it may be achieved as a privilege accorded to certain classes.
The privilege of queue-jumping has traditionally been accorded to influential individuals and groups, for example the Nomenklatura in the former Soviet Union, members of the diplomatic corps and representatives of major corporations. In the UK there have been several incidents reported in which a surgeon's private patients were enabled to move to the top of the waiting list for access to hospital beds or surgery.