February 26th, 2015

Top Travel Mistakes Foreign Tourists Make

by Don

Travel is fun, when you plan things properly. If you have visited many countries, then surely you have made many mistakes such as booking resorts at wrong places or buying costly souvenirs which are easily available in your country. We all make silly mistakes when we visit a new country and there is no need to feel ashamed. What you need to do is make sure that you don’t repeat those mistakes.

When it comes to mistakes, I am not talking about flight or hotel ticket booking blunders. There are many more small oversights that can ruin your vacation. Let’s explore some of the common mistakes that tourists make every year.

No research about the place: You may know the name of the country, its capital and its currency exchange rate, but do you really know the place you are visiting? For example, in India, there are many prepaid taxi booths that charge right amount for a trip, but if you just pick any cab from the road, the driver may charge you double because you don’t know the route to your destination. Similarly, it is important to know the things you can and can’t do in the place you are visiting. For example, taking pictures is prohibited in many religious places.

Over-packing: Never carry too many clothes, because you are going to carry your bags, and if those are too heavy, you will curse yourself. Besides, the airlines charge hefty amount if your luggage crosses the weight limit. Always pack only those things that are necessary for the place you are visiting. For example, if you are going to Tadoba tiger reserve forest and staying at Tadoba tiger resort, then you don’t need to pack a cocktail party dress. It is better to pack a few jeans and t-shirts.

Speaking English only: Try to learn a few sentences in the local language. For example, words of greetings, how to ask for road directions and how to ask the price of something. The more you communicate with the locals in their own language, the more confident you will feel.

Disrespecting the customs: India is a conservative county, and the culture of Indians is very different from Americans. However, that does not mean you can mock or disrespect their culture. For example, Americans enter churches wearing shoes, but in India, you can’t wear shoes in a temple. Respect the rule while visiting any temple in India. After all, you are visiting a new country to understand its culture.

Reading guidebooks only: Guidebooks are for references and they can’t give you all the information about the place. For example, a guidebook may tell you that Taj Mahal is wonderful, but unless you raise your face from the book, can you truly appreciate its beauty?
Booking hotels and flights separately: Take a look at the famous travel portals and you will find that they are offering great hotel + airplane deals. When you book return tickets and also hotel rooms, you can save a few hundred dollars. Besides, it is a hassle free process as you are getting everything from one site.

Interrupting the guide: You can be the history professor in a college, but if you interrupt the guide when he is talking about a historical place, then you are being rude. All the other tourists have paid for the guided tour and by interrupting the guide frequently you are making everyone angry.

So, when you visit a foreign country this year, make sure that you don’t make the mistakes mentioned above. Enjoy nature, history and culture of the place you are visiting and you will feel rejuvenated by the end of your vacation.

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