It’s not quite in keeping with the spirit of the site but I thought it would be interesting to see what seasoned travellers hate about travelling. I know ‘hate’ is a strong word so feel free to share things that make you feel uncomfortable/annoyed.
Mainly, I struggle with:
- Knowing how much to tip: “Am I being too frugal? Am I being too generous? Should I tip the driver now or when he picks me back up?” Tipping makes me feel really uncomfortable. I wish it were just included in the main price – though I appreciate it’s not always kicked back to the people who deserve it.
- Overly verbose guides: I tend not to opt for guides because I prefer to roam around without a set itinerary but on the occasions that I do, I like ones that strike the right balance between informative and overwhelming. I’ve had some amazing guides, but on a couple of occasions I’ve had ones that have recounted every minute detail about every single point of interest from its earliest known history. This can get a bit much especially when you want some free time to explore on your own.
Getting there. A combination of uncomfortable conditions, reclining seats and crushed legs on the flight, overly excessive security measures or officious border control officers (would politeness kill them?)
Other than that the hassle from touts/beggars can get really tiresome at times.
Lottie Gross But doesn't that make the arriving all the more satisfying? If you actually loved the journey and enjoyed the cramped aeroplane conditions perhaps you'd never want to arrive! :P
Michael Huxley No, I'm relieved to arrive, but I'd much prefer to enjoy the journey too! lol!
Kia Abdullah Ha, long-haul flights are one of the rare occasions I appreciate being 5'2".
Lottie Gross Same here Kia!
I think Michael’s picked some good ones there. Flying to a destination is usually a pretty dreadful experience, and touts are often a hassle. If I had to pick a third, it would be attempts to rip you off because you are a tourist. I’m thinking huge admission fees, ‘mistakes’ where extra dishes get added to your bill, taxi drivers saying the meter doesn’t work, and so on.
Kia Abdullah I generally feel an obligation to pay what I think is a fair price rather than get a bargain basement one because a lot of locals depend on tourism for their livelihoods, BUT it does get tiring when people take the piss. A Tunisian souk owner once quoted me £400 for a candle (yes, I did the conversion correctly). I laughed and left.
Michael Huxley Absolutely agree Kia. I dont even mind paying a little over the odds, but the sheer amount they often take the piss with just leaves you tired and jaded after a while!
Having a time limit by which you need to be back somewhere.
Visa and border restrictions.
Definitely agree with James – being ripped off because you are a tourist is very annoying!
I’d also have to add unsuitable travel partners (people who don’t want to try new things or meet new people…stingy people who don’t want to spend any money…etc)
Kia Abdullah I wholeheartedly agree with your second point. I went on a city break with a couple of colleagues once (I'll refrain from naming the city lest they recognise themselves). All they wanted to do was shop, shop , shop instead of sampling the city's amazing food, culture and architecture (hint: Gaudi ;)
I got pretty fed up of staring at clothes rails in Zara by the end. Now, I pick my companions very carefully.
I hate the journey home! Not because I’m leaving necessarily, because sometimes I’m glad to be getting back to normal life (and shower and food). But I hate the waiting! Especially if I’ve been away for a long time and am looking forward to seeing family again – the flight always seems to drag.
Arriving back onto the tarmac is always pretty miserable too, I think it’s an unwritten rule that the weather takes a turn for the worse when I touch down in the UK again :/
Kia Abdullah Agreed. Especially when you're landing back in London where the sky hangs like a damp towel all but seven weeks of the year.
Knowing what to pack – should be easy but it is always so frustrating trying to get everything to fit that you think is a must have item for your trip.
Encountering other tourists/travellers from the UK representing the country really badly: making no attempt to speak local languages; getting wasted in the street; pushing in-front of people in queues; taking flash photos where they shouldn’t…
Oh, and half-empty transatlantic flights where they refuse to let you sit anywhere but the middle seat if you’ve payed a low fare (Delta, I’m looking at you).
Lottie Gross Top one is so true – made the mistake of going to the Algarve in the height of summer when UK tourists were out in force, I was genuinely embarrassed (even by some of my travel companions!)
Olivia Rawes Couldn't agree more with the first point - remember bumping into numerous English people in Cusco while I was living there for a month who made me feel really embarrassed!
I hate packing my bag for travelling. Wonder if I get everything, including my clothes wherever I go.
The cost of getting to places seems to have increased exponentially since I first started travelling.
Throw in the costs of two children and travelling during high-season; it makes doing the one thing we truly love really difficult.
I am much worried about the local authorities who don’t care enough to take care of the tourists by providing amenities, keep the places clean, proper sign boards, system for guiding the tourists etc.
Overall, tourists will have a better experience if the authorities endeavor for the betterment of facilities.
What I hate:
1. Long lines – immigration/custom and such
2. Noisy people – in hostels when you are trying to get some sleep
3. ATM charges abroad
4. Long flights/seat in front of you is inclined/numb legs
5. Forgetting something (to pack or to take back home)