Travel Trends: How to Avoid Being an ‘Ugly American’

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    Travel Trends: How to Avoid Being an ‘Ugly American’ - MSN Travel Articles

    Find out how one group thinks you should act when you’re traveling abroad. Plus, learn why you may no longer need to lug that bulky car seat on the plane, and read about ways to make your next trip more environmentally friendly. By MSN Travel Editors


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    Sept. 13—Do you love to share your political views with the locals you meet while traveling? Do you think that people in other countries should do everything the American way? Does your voice tend to get as loud as the print on your Hawaiian shirt? If so, then you might be an “ugly American.”

    The concept of the ugly American has existed ever since an increasing number of ordinary, middle-class travelers began exploring the world over a half-century ago. Now, an organization called Business for Diplomatic Action, concerned by an apparent rise in what it calls “negative stereotypes about our collective personality,” is hoping to clean up the image of Americans abroad. The group has published a set of guidelines for travelers, the World Citizens Guide, that suggests proper ways of behaving when visiting countries outside of the U.S.

    Among its tips:

    <LI style="PADDING-RIGHT: 0in; MARGIN-TOP: 0in; PADDING-LEFT: 0in; MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0pt">Be humble. In many countries, boasting is considered very rude. … Assume resentment as a default and play down your wealth, power and status.
    <LI style="PADDING-RIGHT: 0in; MARGIN-TOP: 0in; PADDING-LEFT: 0in; MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0pt">Refrain from lecturing. Nobody likes a know-it-all, and nobody likes a whole nation of them.

    *Be quiet. A loud voice is often perceived as a bragging voice. Casual profanity is almost always considered unacceptable

    <LI style="PADDING-RIGHT: 0in; MARGIN-TOP: 0in; PADDING-LEFT: 0in; MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0pt">Dress for respect. Jeans, T-shirts and sneakers work for many of us much of the time, but there are people in other countries who believe such casualness is a sign of disrespect to them and their beliefs.
    These might seem like obvious ways to behave when you’re traveling abroad, and you may not appreciate the guide’s somewhat patronizing tone. But it appears we could use the advice. In studies conducted in more than 100 countries by DDB Worldwide after 9/11, respondents perceived Americans as loud, arrogant and disrespectful of local cultures. And in a new survey of seven Asian countries, the results of which were published this week in a Japanese newspaper, the image of the U.S. was reported to have declined across the board in the past decade, particularly in countries with large Muslim populations.

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    Some of this sentiment can likely be attributed to unpopular U.S. policies, but the crass personality exhibited by many Americans is also a probable cause. (If you agree, tell us the worst offenders you’ve ever seen.) And while you may not be able to influence our elected officials, at least you can send a copy of these tips to your brother-in-law who’s always spouting off at the top of his lungs.

    Sound off! Do you agree with the “ugly American” stereotype?

    Fasten your seat belts

    There’s welcome news for parents who dread having to schlep a heavy car seat on plane trips to keep their toddlers safe. The Federal Aviation Administration has approved a new children’s harness weighing only about a pound. Called CARES, which stands for “Child Aviation Restraint System” (despite the more obvious acronym, it’s not approved for use in automobiles), the device wraps around the back of an airplane seat and connects to its seat belt.

    ;) interesting...........
  2. That&#180;s interesting......because when Americans ask me why European people dislike them so much, I just try to explain that these people they met probably haver never been to US.
    They just judge from that stereotype they get from tourists visiting their country. That stereotype is well explained in that article.
    I might also add :
    - They shouldn&#180;t just expect everybody to speak english- They&#180;ll only get a rude response to that, and might just say "Bonjour" (or the equivalent of hello in any language of the country visiting) and then "Do you speak english ?"
    People appreciate that A LOT !!
  3. To be honest, all the american tourists I've met in Norway has been really warm and friendly, but they can be somewhat loud some times, but I don't think they do that to be arrogant or something. I think what citizens in other countries react to is more the political "world police"-attitude that the average tourist don't have anything to do with in reality. But really, it's stupid to jugde a whole nation based on something somebodys government does.
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