The ONE Tourist Mistake You Should NOT Make On Your Next Trip Abroad

Sometimes, a small tip goes a long way...

Traveling the globe involves learning and adapting to cultural peculiarities one may never even knew existed. Here, HuffPost editors from around the world share their tips on what tourist faux pas you may want to avoid on your next adventure.

Let them be your guide on what NOT to do upon arriving at these popular destinations.

Because sometimes it's better (ahem, not as embarrassing) to know these things before you get there.

1. Not everyone in New York has anger management issues.

new york sidewalk

Okay, so New York isn't a country per se, but it's still a pretty huge tourist destination so it calls for some guidelines as well. New Yorkers aren't all a**holes (they're just in a hurry), so feel free to stop them and ask for directions and such -- a lot of them will be more than happy to help. Remember that only two extreme seasons exist here: The very, very hot and the very, very cold. Choose how you want to experience the city accordingly.

Also, pro-tip: Not everywhere that claims to have "New York's finest pizza" actually has New York's finest pizza.

2. Avoid making a "super clever" cocaine joke in Colombia.


First off, it's Colombia not Columbia. Spell it wrong and any countryman is sure to disregard you from the get-go. But also, maybe don't spark an in-depth conversation about Pablo Escobar, drug wars and guerillas. As HuffPoster and Colombian native Carolina Moreno puts it, "We're aware of our dark past but we don't need anyone -- especially foreigners -- talking about what has been going on in our country for half a century."

Colombians are very happy people, so they may still smile at you. But you can be certain your brownie points will go way down.

3. Don't ask them to pronounce "about" in Canada.

canadian lumberjack

They know you're just waiting for them to say "aboot" instead so you can have yourself a good laugh -- guess what, they're not amused. Fight the urge because you'll only piss people off. Also, HuffPoster and professional Canadian Ron Nurwisah would like you to know that they don't live in igloos, have polar bears for pets or say "eh" a lot.

"We are not a nation full of handsome, rugged lumberjacks. We're not all lumberjacks." Too bad.

4. Eating spaghetti with a spoon in Italy is just... NO.

You know that thing people do where they twirl pasta around their fork with the aid of a spoon? Yeah, Italians don't do that. Of course, there may be a few exceptions depending on region, but as a rule of thumb, leave your spoon on the table where it belongs.

Spaghetti is usually only eaten with a fork -- just twirl until it's all on there.

5. People don't take siestas everyday in Spain... sorry.


As HuffPoster and Spanish native Margarita Lazaro puts it, "We work until 6 P.M. and we don't have a holiday every other day." So if you come to Spain thinking it's all naps and sangria, don't. Remember that Spain's beaches are very hot in the summer, meaning sunscreen is a big fat must. But during the winter, the beaches can actually get quite cold, so plan your trip with that knowledge.

And no, not everyone is a flamenco dancer.

6. A tourist double decker bus in the U.K. = rookie mistake.


You'll most likely only have this problem in London, but according to HuffPoster and Brit Jessica Elgot, "This is the one thing you shouldn't do." Apparently the tourist buses charge around £20. And here's the secret: If you ride the public double decker buses, you'll get the same experience for about £1.20.

Also, when in London, don't stand on the left side of the escalator. Trust us on this one. HuffPoster Andrea Mann claims "It really is the most annoying thing a tourist can do in the capital."

7. It's abysmal to mix water and wine in France.

wine with ice

The French take their wine very seriously, so don't insult them by watering it down. In addition, it's always good to know some basic key words as the majority aren't too fond of people just speaking English everywhere (like everyone is supposed to understand or something). HuffPoster and Frenchman Alexandre Phalippou would also like you to know that Jim Morrison's grave in Père Lachaise is still a cemetery: "Don't forget people are there to bury a member of their family."

If you respect the French, the French will respect you -- maybe.

8. Speaking candidly to elders is bad decorum in South Korea.


If you're going to be attempting a few Korean phrases, this rule is important: You have to add a "yo" to the end of your phrases when speaking to someone who is older than you. Respect for elders is a very essential part of Korean culture, and if you go around addressing everyone in exactly the same way, you could be considered rude.

In fact, plenty of words and phrases change depending on to whom you're speaking -- when in doubt, ask.

9. Good luck ordering a burrito in Mexico -- they don't exist.


Yup, you read that right. Burritos aren't really a thing in Mexico. Our neighbors are more used to eating corn tortilla tacos with meat, a little onion and cilantro. The big flour tortilla stuffed with rice, beans and loads of other goodness is really more often consumed in the U.S. than it is down south.

And, also, when they eat tacos in Mexico, there's rarely ever a hard shell involved.

10. Please, please be aware of your drinking limit in Germany.

The land of Oktoberfest and the beer boot gets it: A good number of you probably just came here to drink. For those, HuffPoster and German extraordinaire Miriam Held has some words of wisdom, "Tourists drinking too much beer and passing out on the street. Not good..."

In addition, when checking out Glockenspiel at Marienplatz in the city center, remember that commuters still need to walk across. So avoid standing right in front and just staring up -- nobody likes a roadblock.

11. Don't assume you can easily travel through Brazil.

brazil huge country

Brazil is a huge country. It's not like Europe where everything is a two-hour train ride away. If you're planning on exploring the nation a bit, plan accordingly before you arrive -- you're going to need to book flights. A few more tips from HuffPoster and Brazilian Otávio Dias goes as follows: "Brazilians don't speak Spanish"; "At the beach, why use a lot of clothes?"; And "Don't use expensive smartphones on the streets."

Other than that, roam free -- Brazil is your oyster.

12. And lastly, don't block the sidewalk like, anywhere in the world.


HuffPoster and U.K. native Jody Thompson breaks it down pretty beautifully: "Don't saunter along at a snail's pace whilst walking like, five abreast down a busy pavement."

And that goes for everyone, everywhere, all the time. Safe travels!

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