Travel Blogger John Audrey Jones provides some of his thoughts about people behaving badly whilst on holiday.
Holidays. They’re the one time of the year when you really can kick back and do as you please. If you want to have sangria for breakfast and stay out drinking and dancing ‘til all hours, there’s no-one to stop you. In fact, depending on where you go for your holiday, it’s positively encouraged!
Having a few drinks, being a bit raucous and having a good time is one thing. However, there are some people who take things a bit too far. Increasingly, groups of same-sex friends – stag and hen parties particularly – are travelling further afield for weekends and even whole weeks to celebrate special occasions with an exotic twist. With the increased bravado brought on by safety in numbers, some of these groups can behave extremely badly indeed.
Brits Behaviour Abroad
The publication of the Brits Behaviour Abroad statistics 2011 (Foreign and Commonwealth Office http://www.fco.gov.uk/en/news/latest-news/?view=News&id=639222082) show that British people most commonly seek consular assistance in Spain and the United States. British nationals are more likely to be arrested in Thailand than any other country, and amongst the youngest age group – 18-24 – some 48% say that they know someone who’s taken illegal drugs abroad.
A holiday can feel like a complete escape from the world. For the most part, this is a good thing and gives you chance to recharge your batteries, but there are some very good reasons why it makes sense to keep your behaviour in check.
Although we may complain about having a nanny state in the UK, it’s easy to forget sometimes how liberal Britain is as a country. Generally speaking, the Police have your safety and that of others at heart. The law enforcement in other countries can seem quite draconian in comparison and tourists often find themselves falling foul of laws they never even realised existed until they’re hauled off to the cells.
Strict behaviour rules in Dubai
The Gulf city of Dubai has some very strict rules about behaviour in public places. Wearing a skirt that’s too short or even hugging another person on the street can lead to police involvement. With its growing popularity as a shopping destination, this could lead to trouble.
Find out what is acceptable
Before travelling, it pays to find out what’s acceptable – or not – in the country that you’re visiting. It will save you the pain of a possible fine or, worse still, detention. The last thing you want is for your jolly holiday to end with disastrous consequences.
Have you ever heard people complaining about ‘Brits abroad’? Our bad behaviour in tourist traps is well-known throughout the world, and it really doesn’t help. It’s not just Brits, admittedly, but tourists and their poor behaviour is changing the places that we choose to visit.
In April 2012, Holland passed a law that forbids the sale of cannabis products to foreign nationals, not least because of the huge amount of drug tourism. This follows on from changes brought about by the Amsterdam mayor to the Red Light District, seeing the closure of many of the windows and numerous coffee shops. Whilst all this is not entirely attributable to the poor behaviour of tourists, the two things aren’t entirely unconnected.
This doesn’t mean you have to behave like nuns or monks on holiday. There is plenty of fun to be had without breaking any laws or inconveniencing fellow travellers. It always pays to play it safe and stay on the right side of the law. If you’re going somewhere particularly exotic or far-flung, a quick internet search will make sure that you’re safe when travelling and not putting yourself in danger of falling foul of the law. Really, though, it’s not that difficult. Put simply, if you wouldn’t do it at home, don’t do it when you’re on holiday!