Toxic tourists - SunStar

Toxic tourists

Weekend readers reveal their biggest pet peeves about fellow travelers

By Patricia May P. Catan and Christian Jay B. Quilo
Photo: N.S. Villaflor

TRAVELING is an experience like no other. To discover and to explore a city or country, whether for the first or nth time, is always exciting and invigorating. But while you’re enjoying being a tourist yourself, admit it: there are instances when you can’t help but furrow your brows, roll your eyes or give a side-eye at other tourists. SunStar Weekend asks its jet-setting readers on what frustrates them the most about their fellow travelers:

Thannya Pino
Event Manager and Tour Guide
MyEventology Co.

“There are really some tourists who have disrespect for the destination and the environment they visit like throwing or leaving their rubbish anywhere, disrespecting places of worship and showing unfriendly gestures to the locals or community.”

Johanna Michelle Lim, 31
Chief Brand Strategist
Dual Story Branding and Communications

“When I started, my travels were paved with forced experiences. Something had to happen all the time, every time. I chocked my itinerary to the brim and made sure there was always a hint of danger to keep the adrenaline running. I was impatient and overeager to squeeze the essence out of a place. Otherwise, any trip would have fallen short. I see the same hunger in my younger contemporaries now, this assertive bulldozing into place and experience. Perhaps it comes with age but I have so much appreciation for the quiet observers now, those who sit in a corner of the cafe and let the insight of movement come to them. They seem to hold this quiet confidence that life’s learnings somehow always will.”

Marie Feline Soria, 28
Let’s Stylize

“Some tourists can be so insensitive. They can’t seem to follow simple rules like no jaywalking, no crossing, no littering and the like. Also, some have the tendency not to be mindful about the culture and certain practices of the country they are visiting. I’ve also observed that especially during transfers, most tourists can be very impatient. Nonetheless, traveling is fun.”

Donn Monique, 29
Social Media Manager
Atheist Republic

“I enjoy traveling and the experiences that come with it. To be honest, there’s a lot I love about traveling that I am also too biased to even think of anything to hate. But I guess I can say that I don’t enjoy it when tourists do not follow simple queuing rules like waiting in line for their turn in a ticket booth or when some people tend to push each other forward when areas get too crowded.”

Gayle Lim, 32

“You know that feeling when you go home and check the photos you took after a vacation and sometimes you can’t even associate it with any good feeling even when it happened just a few days ago? Well, I sometimes experience it and I think a lot of us also do. We take way too many photos and selfies that we often fail to just enjoy the moment while it happens. So I guess this is one of my biggest pet peeves.”

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