Police escorted a commuter from a packed rush hour train after he sat in a near-deserted first class area when there were no standard seats.
Edward White said he was "humiliated" to be met at by British Transport Police officers - who had been alerted to a potential case of fare evasion - at Birmingham New Street after he refused to move.
The 26-year-old - who pays £142 for a monthly pass - said there were no seats or safe standing space in the standard area but there were only four other passengers in first class when he sat down.
Edward White told the train manager he would not return to the "unsafe" zones for the duration of his journey from Wilnecote in Tamworth to Birmingham New Street. It happened on the 8.07am service.
I have never been in any trouble with law enforcement and can honestly say I have never been so utterly humiliated as to have been escorted off the train, by a train manager who was openly smirking, and the two police officers.
To make matters worse, Mr White was told he could not deduct the price of a standard fare from the first class charge.
Mr White said he and other passengers had previously sat in first class when all other seats were taken and had never experienced any problems.
He has asked CrossCountry for a refund on the first class upgrade he bought.
Officers met the train at Birmingham New Street, however this turned out to be a civil matter and the incident was resolved by railway staff.
Crowding can occur on trains at the busiest times and, although this can feel uncomfortable, the trains remain safe. However, even if a train is busy, unless the staff on board give permission then customers holding standard tickets are not allowed to sit in the first class area without paying the first class fare.