Good article on the American tourist

Discussion in 'Travel Tips & Advice' started by Sova, Jun 18, 2008.

  1. Sova

    Sova Well-Known Member

  2. eso

    eso Well-Known Member

    I think it's good article and advices. Particularly points 6, 7 and 9.
  3. scrimshaw

    scrimshaw Well-Known Member

    This is lifted from that msnbc article..

    Americans traveling abroad have a particularly bad rap. They're loud, poorly dressed and — worst of all — obvious. The Ugly American.

    Is that true? Is this how you would describe american tourists?
  4. petri

    petri Well-Known Member

    That discription fits to so many other tourists too...
    On the other hand I´ve seen really smart and well behaving American tourists. :wink:
  5. Sova

    Sova Well-Known Member

    When I was in Prague 12 years ago, it was painfully easy to pick out an American in a crowd (usually, at least). Americans do tend to speak much louder than Czechs (unless they're drunkards). American tourists tend to wear obvious clothes: e.g. shorts, T-shirts. Not to mention the American swagger. It was a rare thing for me to get fooled by an American, and usually it was not by a tourist, but by someone who have lived in Prague awhile and knew the culture better than to act so blatantly American.
  6. Ktot

    Ktot Well-Known Member

    In the U.S, the stereotype is about Japanese tourists.

    ...The pairing of 7 and 8 amuse me. The stereotypical "ugly" tourist expects everyone to speak their language, and is frustrated otherwise, but at the same time expects that nothing they say in public will be understood. I never quite understood the logic of that.

    Most of that advice was common sense (which of course, isn't all that common), and when I travel I certainly try to do those things. Once when I was in Germany, my mother came to visit, who had never been out of the country. In many ways, she is that tourist, and traveling with her was painful, not because of how people reacted, but because I was aware of it, and was personally mortified on her and America's behalf. :roll:
  7. Ktot

    Ktot Well-Known Member

    I like that the article advised people to be culturally aware while still being themselves. (I've been advised to say I'm Canadian while traveling, and I know people that drives me crazy.)
  8. scrimshaw

    scrimshaw Well-Known Member

    First of all, I would say to that. Why is America disliked overseas? Second I would say I am not sure I agree with that assertion.
    Ok, itś a given that not everybody agreed with the US when, without UN backing, went to war. Is that it? I know president Mitterand was quite upset with us. What is this basis for the idea that we are disliked?
    I might be naive here, but I think that is kind of urban legend.
    Sure some parts of southern Asia dislike us, but I would offer this, that just as many there are glad we are doing what we are doing.
    Is america viewed as militant? Cowboyish? Whatever that means.
    Act first, think of consequences later?
    I am not sure I agree with the statement, that, as a whole, we are disliked.
    That would be a shame, to have to play down the idea that we are American when we travel.
    Sure, don't be obnoxious, but I think that's a rule for any tourist.
  9. Ktot

    Ktot Well-Known Member

    Scrimshaw, all I meant it that I am very aware that I represent my country, and I attempt to do it well. Perhaps I worded wrong.

    There being a stereotype is not the same as being disliked. I know of all sorts of stereotypes (both positive and negative) of different groups of people that I do not believe. But despite that, if one meets someone of a particular group, who does fit the stereotype, the person will still think "go figure."

    An American stereotype can include both positive and negative characteristics. But one: it's always better to distinguish yourself as an individual than simply "another member of Group whatever", and two: if one of those negative characteristics in the stereotype is loud, it would do one well to try hard not to be loud, because people will notice it more if you are, and because if you're not...who knows, maybe you can contribute to changing that stereotype.
  10. Irena M

    Irena M Well-Known Member

    Maybe because I'm not US born, (I was born in Prague), I had no problems being an "American" when I went back to visit. Maybe because I kept myself low key?
  11. Alexx

    Alexx Well-Known Member

    Every time I see some tourist in red-white shirts with maple leafs on their bags or baseball caps, I am starting to be a little suspicios if it is just a camouflage or not 8)

    Someone should make a list: "How to identify american in canadian cover-up", like:

    Hey, dude, what's the highest mountain in Canada? (mt. Logan is right answer)

    How high is it? (any answer given in fts is wrong)

    How far from Montreal/Toronto/Ottawa do you live? (any answer given in miles is wrong :))

    What is mean temperature in <insert random place in Canada> in <insert random season>? (any answer given in °F is wrong :))

    What month do you celebrate thanksgiving? (November? Gotcha!)
  12. Sova

    Sova Well-Known Member

    Hilarious DJAvatar, er, ehm, Alexx! :lol:
  13. Sova

    Sova Well-Known Member

    Scrimshaw, make sure you separate the attitude of Czechs (and other Europeans) toward Americans from their attitude toward American tourists. The negative attitude toward American tourists has been around since long before the Iraq War.
  14. Alexx

    Alexx Well-Known Member

    I have never met any american tourists. Only canadian ;-)
  15. Ktot

    Ktot Well-Known Member

    Yeah, poor Canadians, people are going to stop believing them!

    There's nothing worse than being called out on a lie that's not even a lie.

    (Also, to be fair to scrimshaw, I think he was responding to a comment of mine that was edited.)
  16. kibicz

    kibicz Well-Known Member

    I just wander if "american tourist" is the same as "bodry ostravak" - means it doesnt have to be necessarily from america(resp. ostrava) but have its special features.
  17. fabik317

    fabik317 Well-Known Member

    what are the "special features" of a "bodry ostravak"? i've fallen in love with that city but unfortunately i'm from brno, perhaps i should start practicing those "special features":)
  18. kibicz

    kibicz Well-Known Member

    bodry ostravak(yes, without diacritics) is kind of tourist mentioned in book "Proč bychom se nepotili, aneb jak se chodí po horách" by Zdeněk Šmíd - bodry ostravak usualy goes to mountain tours in slipers*, constantly makes jokes about beer(especialy about its lack) and mountain accidents never happen to him...
    I can recommend the book since its realy funny and very thin.

    *resp. its town version
  19. scrimshaw

    scrimshaw Well-Known Member

    Sova, maybe you are right there. Maybe I'm lumping together attitude towards americans, and attitude towards american tourists, when really those two concepts are different. So the american tourist(this is highly overgeneralizing) is disliked(I'm sure that is too strong a word) not because he is American, but because he acts inappropriately, is loud, and get's upset when people don't understand him.
    Well I like that a lot better. I can live with someone disliking me because I'm, say, arrogant and conceited, rather than disliking me because I'm american.

    Ktot, I agree, we should act appropriately as tourists, not like entitiled snobs, (I sure hope thatś not the image of american tourists). Politeness and manners go a long way.

    Alexx, be on the look out for those Canadian impersonators, let us know how your polling in the street goes. :lol:
  20. Alexx

    Alexx Well-Known Member

    As I am in Prague right now (two and half hour till the gathering), I am playing the part of "bodry ostravak" here :).

    I must admit I haven't met any "obvious americans" yet. Looking forward to Glenn ;-)

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