This article led me to wonder…. are Americans the world’s worst tourists? Apparently, a lot of people think so. According to the survey referenced in the article, not only do other nationalities think we’re bad, we aren’t very high on our tourist abilities ourselves. 4,000 of 5,600 respondents were American! Fortunately, the news wasn’t all bad. As it turns out, Americans are pretty worldly, with some 78 percent of us having visited at least one foreign country. I was actually surprised it was that high, but I do wonder how many times that one country might have been Canada or Mexico.
I like to think that I am respectful of other cultures and make it a point to try and study some basic habits of the locals when I’m going to visit a foreign country. My weak spot is foreign languages. I can speak a few basic phrases of Spanish, but that’s about it. My new goal is to not only study the culture of a country I’m planning to visit, but also try and study the language a bit. I’ve seen so many of my fellow countrymen seem almost surprised in foreign locales when they figure out that the primary language isn’t English. I think that might contribute to our poor reputation as tourists around the world. What are your thoughts on this?