Being A Tourist 101
So you want to go on vacation, huh? You think NYC will be nice in the summer and you’re excited to finally see Times Square. Just don’t forget, while you’re excited to see a new place, there are people who actually live in that city who are not permanently on vacation and who have things to do. And while tourism is great for any city’s economy, most of the time when people in a certain place get a bad rap for being rude, it’s because they were faced with a tourist who didn’t understand the rules. So, in order to avoid being the type of tourist that city-slickers despise, here are some tips to keep in mind when you’re vacationing in a new place.
- Don’t Crowd – We know, we know, everybody in your 20-person tour group thinks they would be the best one to guide you if they could just get a closer look at the metro map. However, to avoid clogging up passageways with your large group, it helps to designate one person to be the navigator. That way your fearless leader can focus on their task of getting you all from point A to point B, and everyone else trying to get by doesn’t have to try and maneuver right through the middle of your group.
- Stay on the Right – So, you want to be a rebel and plant yourself on the left side of the escalator when everyone else is standing on the right. You want to be right next to your friend so that you two can talk about how excited you are to be in the big, bad city! But please, please, please, if there’s one thing you take away from this article: stand on the right! You can talk to your travel companion perfectly fine in front of or behind them. Think about it like driving down the highway. The left lane is the passing lane, and trust me, those people rushing down the escalator like bats out of hell trying to catch their train might annoy you just as much as someone tailgating you down the road would, but seriously, get out of the way.
- Try not to lollygag – The first thing people tend to do in a new place when they step out of the door/metro stop/taxi is to slow down and stare at all the awesomeness around them that they’ve never seen before. Tourists also tend to saunter down the sidewalk, spread apart, just taking it all in like they have all the time in the world. The rest of us, on the other hand, are not on vacation and therefore have places to be. So to make it easier for all involved, try to keep a decent pace so that you don’t slow down the people trying to get past you, or, if you do want to get a better look at something, try to move off to the side while you do it.
The bottom line is, people are usually in a hurry. It’s easy to forget that fact when you’re on vacation or you’re in a bigger city because you’re not operating on much of a schedule, but the citizens of any big city will tell you that one of their biggest pet peeves are tourists. We love what you do for our economies, just not always what you do to our schedules. Gotta go!
Image from http://www.buzzfeed.com/lindseyweber/tourist-trap-ru