I came across this gem of an info graphic on Tumblr the other day and I figured it was time to make some very important points about traveling. You don’t want to be THAT girl or guy who has a horrible time.
There is nothing more irritating then spending months planning a trip of a lifetime and then you get on the plane only to find a crying baby or yourself in a new destination with someone making rude comments towards you. Most important thing to remember: Not everyone speaks English or know much english. Things will go wrong and not everything you plan will work out. Be to other what you would be to them. Making friends is a part of the experience and sometimes you may meet someone who will make a difference in your life forever. As I spent my summer in London, I became close with an American I met there. Now she is one of my best friends and I spent this past week visiting her in Florida! Traveling with someone will create special bonds. That being said: here are some tips to not being a jerk and trying to have the best experience when you leave your home!
1. When on the plane – don’t take up any space that you don’t deserve. Planes are small and personal space is important. You already worked so hard packing up and making space for things you need – now realize that you are given a seat and some space above you for yourself. Be mindful of others. Unless you paid for more space or a first class seat – use the space allotted to you and only you.
2. SHHHH. Control the volume of your voice. Some people want to nap and some people get nauseous when on plans. Help others be comfortable and watch how loud you speak. When your at your location – still keep this rule in mind. While in India I was told that I was being “american loud.” You may not notice it but depending on your culture you have a different perception on what constitutes for loud.
3. Be ready when its your turn. Airports are super stressful places to be in. Lines are probably long. Prepare while your in line for what you need next. If you’re going to have to take out your tickets and passport – your wait is your time! Utilize it. You don’t want to be the jerk that holds up the line.
4. Recognize the difference in cultures. Do your research before you leave. This infographic above has a good chunk of information. From tipping to basic interactions with other cultures you don’t want to offend someone. If you’re going to Morroco for example know that it is unacceptable for a non muslim to enter the mosque if you wanted to visit one. Pick up a book or do a quick google search!
What rules or tips do you have to make sure you’re not a jerk?