Travel Etiquette

I adore traveling. I’m always planning my next trip, always making lists of places to go.

The one downside of traveling though is having to rub shoulders with other travelers who are seriously lacking in travel etiquette. Another person’s caustic vibe, bad manners, or lack of consideration for others can spoil an otherwise wonderful time for everyone around them. So here are some pointers on how to improve your travel etiquette

1.  Don’t Expect Everyone To Speak English
Although throughout Europe and plenty of Asia people seem to speak at least some English, learn a few things to say in the language of the country you are in. Simple greetings, please and thank you, if nothing else. It is far more polite to be able to point to phrases in a guide book and be making a discernable effort than to just demand everyone speak your language.

2.  Don’t Block The Sidewalk.

One Man Traffic Jam - NY Daily News

               You may be on vacation, and you may be lost and need to look at your map or read your guide   book, but there are others who have to move along that same sidewalk to go to work, to live their lives, or to go see the sights. If you have to take some map time/chat time/argument time/ standing still time, have the decency to step out of the traffic, or away from the monument or work of art that everyone else has traveled clear across the world to see.

3.  Keep Your Voice Down

You may enjoy speaking at full volume, and you may think that everyone around you wants to hear that which you are pontificating about, but believe me, we don’t. High on the list of nauseating travel moments is having to endure the bleating of some moron, whether they are on their cell phone or just yarping on about whatever to their friends, when you are trying to enjoy some special place that you have saved up and traveled to get to. Have the decency to maintain the same level of decibels as everyone around you

4.  If There Is A Better One At Home, Stay At Home
One of the worst things when you are traveling is having to listen to some fool banging on about how there is a bigger one at home, a better one at home, the wine is better at home, anything is better at home.
We don’t travel so that we can feel some sense of superiority because we think home is better. We travel to experience new things, different things, a different world view. Sometimes travel makes us see that there is far more out there to aspire to, and sometimes it makes us more appreciative for all that we have.
If you feel the need to inform the world that its better where you are from, do us all a favor and stay where you are from.

5.  Be Polite
It doesn’t cost anything to be polite, even when those around us are behaving badly.

6.  Recognize Cultural Differences
And respect them. There is a lot to be said for when in Rome, doing as the Romans do. Take the time to do a Google search on the destination you are flying into, and learn about the cultural practices and customs there. For example, if you are heading to Morocco it is unacceptable for non-Muslims to go into mosques. In some countries it is offensive to blow your nose in public. Plenty of places need you to keep your shoulders and legs covered when going into their churches or places of worship.
A little forward thinking can circumvent embarrassment and help you avoid potential trouble

7.  Don’t Criticize
This is part of number 4 and number 5. So what if they do it better at home? So what if the service is better at home, the traffic works better at home, the internet infrastructure is better at home – who cares? You’re not at home now, so get over it.
Your criticism can be really hurtful to others, especially when they are proud of the things you are bashing.

It’s not what happens that counts, it’s how you handle what happens that is the true measure of who you are. Learn to roll with it, look for the good in situations, and you may be pleasantly surprised at just how wonderful this world can be.

Do you have more travel etiquette tips? I want to know them so please add them to the comment section below!