When you are travelling to a place that is different from your hometown, sometimes there is a sense of freedom. You think you can do anything because no one recognizes who you are so they won’t judge you. However, this is the kind of damaging way of thinking because just as much liberating travelling is, you still have to be mindful of cultural sensitivities that are different from your own. Hence, it is important to educate yourself about things that you should and should not do as a tourist or visitor.
Be a respectful tourist who is always welcome back
Today, there is no reason for you to stay oblivious because information is everywhere. You can educate yourself about how to be a respectful tourist so you can do your best to avoid being an occasion of cross-cultural judgement. And here are things you should know before travelling as a tourist:
Do not treat wildlife like a pet
Sure the animals you encounter with during your trip to a national park are cute and adorable to look at. However, they are still wild creatures that relies on their instinct. Petting or feeding them are not allowed. It is not only dangerous for you but for the animals themselves. They may get hooked on human foods which are not healthy for them and can cause them to get sick instead.
Always follow the rules
Each place may implement certain rules both for the locals or visitors. When you come as a visitors, you are considered outsider or guests. Hence, make sure to abide by rules such as dressing appropriately. Each culture has beliefs that are significant for them. Even if you don’t really understand the meaning or purpose, do not try to be argumentative or rebellious.
Always watch your language
If you don’t have time to learn local language prior the trip, always be careful with what you say even in your own language. Use your common sense and if you are not sure if certain words may offend the locals, choose another word that has no vague meaning. Also, pay attention to the volume of your voice when speaking.
Heed danger sign
Lots of tourists have gotten involved in various accidents while travelling because they didn’t heed danger signs. They got accidents just because they wanted to take cool pictures to be uploaded on social media. Ignorant and impulsive behavior can be harmful for your safety.
Try new things
Travelling is when you can let yourself out of your comfort zone. You can do it by trying out local dishes for example. It may seem simple but trying out a thing that has been part of the local culture can also means you appreciate their culture.
Be a good ambassador of your country
Travelling to another country should not make you forget of who you are. Hence, be considerate with your actions and words. It is easy to judge an entire country based on the behavior of few people.