Your itinerary is ready, flight tickets and hotel rooms booked and you’re all set to embark on your dream holiday…but wait. Have you done your homework on the destination that you’re traveling to? Do you know the cultural norms in that place – what’s acceptable and what’s not? As the saying goes – When in Rome, do as the Romans do’, there are certain do’s and don’t every traveler should follow to make sure their holiday doesn’t turn into a nightmare.
1) Look up the climate there: Check out the weather predictions during the period of your stay in that country. If it’s winter pack some woolens and if it’s summer keep loose, comfortable and lightweight clothes so that they are easy to carry.
2) Adhere to the local culture and etiquette: Acquaint yourself with the culture of that region. For instance, some gestures might be alright in your home country but they might not go down well elsewhere in the world.
While you stand by your culture and etiquette firmly, learning the local etiquette will be a new learning experience and help you gel well with the locals. It’s very important to conduct yourself properly to avoid attracting any unwanted attention.
3) Dress appropriately: While certain styles of clothing may be acceptable in your own country, they may be considered inappropriate/offensive in others.
4) Learn a bit of the local language: You usually won’t have any issues if you are not familiar with the language of any country but learning a few greetings and gestures can go a long way. They will help form an instant connect with the locals. Just in case you need their help, you might end up thanking yourself !
5) Try the local cuisine
You are traveling to a new destination to get new experiences. So, instead of going to a global chain restaurant, try out one of the local restaurants to get a taste of the local cuisine. It will give you a better insight into, what kind of food the locals have and how it’s prepared. It will enhance your palate and even inspire you to add more variety to your own cooking back home! Also, you’ll find in a lot of places that the local food is cheaper as well.
1) Be disrespectful :You are a proud citizen of your own country but when you travel anywhere in the world you must remember that people are as proud of their country as you are, so don’t disrespect the culture, customs or the language of the country you are going to visit.
2) Carry too much cash: it’s not advisable to carry large amounts of cash with you while you’re out and about, particularly at night. Carry a card instead and have a small amount of cash for emergency or for places where cards are not accepted. If you’re going out to eat, check with the restaurant beforehand if they accept card payments. While most establishments today accept cards, there are still many that don’t. It’s always wise to check in advance so you don’t end up unnecessarily carrying too much cash which you might risk losing.
3) Consume too much alcohol while you’re out: The last thing you want when you’re in a foreign location is not knowing what you’re doing or where you are. Consuming too much alcohol can impair your judgement and put your life in danger, especially when you’re traveling to a remote area with no access to medical help.
4) Be disconnected: Try to form a connection with the locals with whom you get a chance to interact with. In this way you will meet a lot of new people and learn a lot of new things.
5) Be a braggart: You may have had the best things in your country but you just can’t crib and complain somewhere else. The locals will not like you for that. Be as accommodating and as humble as possible.
After all traveling is all about new experiences and learning. Maximize your experience by mingling with the people, tasting new cuisines, visiting new places and enjoying every new thing that comes along.