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Who are the world's worst tourists?
Americans? Brits? French? Russians? It seems to be all of us, depending on whom you ask
Just when you thought Americans had already clanged the bell on the “most hated nationality” high striker, they start turning on themselves.
A new poll from LivingSocial, reported by USA Today, has found that now even Americans hate Americans, when they’re traveling with them, anyway.
All that buddy-buddy, back-slappin’ “have a nice day” conviviality counts for nothing, it seems, when you’re on the road.
“We have seen the enemy and he is us,” reported Jayne Clark.
Also on CNNGo: World's best tourists
But hold on one second.
I’m a Brit and I’m pretty sure, judging from my latest holiday pictures anyway, that my countrymen and I can give you Yanks a run for your shiny new ATM cards.
The LivingSocial poll hasn’t been formally released yet, so whatever reasons self-loathing Americans gave for dissing each other I haven’t seen.
But unless American tourists drink three pints of beer for breakfast, expect the whole world to understand alcohol-fogged English, travel halfway around the planet to order the same food they would in their local pub and are actually proud to acknowledge that in the past “tourism” consisted of sending an army into a country, planting a flag and commanding locals to serve you, then really, you don’t stand a chance.
And others agree.
A poll last year, in fact, found that Brits are the world’s top travel hooligans.
Also on CNNGo: James Durston: Drunken British expats should be chained up
Skyscanner’s survey declared us the worst in four out of five categories, including “not attempting to learn a language,” “being drunk and disorderly” and “not tipping.”
Attaboy -- I knew we had it in us.
Closer inspection reveals that once again this was a case of a nation committing opinion-poll cannibalism -- it was voted on by Brits.
Perhaps the results say more about a traveler’s desire to escape his fellow countrymen than it does about poor behavior.
But it doesn’t stop there.
An Expedia poll from 2009 found that the French are the worst behaved travelers, being bad tippers, cheap, rude and averse to foreign languages.
Yet another poll says it’s the Russians we should be avoiding, as they’re loud, greedy, belching, money-flashing, queue-barging, sun-lounger thieves.
I’m almost tempted to cede to the Ruskis here -- that is quite a roll call of obnoxious behaviors.
But clearly there’s a wider message to acknowledge -- no matter where you’re from and where you’ve gone, you’re probably annoying somebody, somewhere, and they’re just waiting for the right poll to come along to out you.
Now it’s your turn -- tell us who the world’s worst tourists are in the comments below.
The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of James Durston.