Report names world's top skinny dippers, Speedo enthusiasts

Report names world's top skinny dippers, Speedo enthusiasts

Expedia's annual Flip Flop Report examines beach attitudes worldwide and reveals our biggest seaside fears
Keeping watch for unauthorized Speedos.

Some tips on how to be a better beach bum:

Build sand castles in India, avoid Speedo-like swimwear in Japan, go topless in Germany.

Travel booking website Expedia has released this year’s Flip Flop Report, its annual survey beachgoer behavior worldwide.

The survey counted 8,606 survey responses from across Europe, the Americas and Asia Pacific.

Most respondents favor beach vacations above any other type of holiday.

Australians, Dutch, French, Japanese, Singaporeans and Spaniards prefer historical/cultural sightseeing, whereas New Zealanders say visiting friends and family is the most important holiday activity.

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As it did in last year’s Flip Flop Report, Germany outranked all other free-spirited nations in the enjoyment of public nudity.

Some 17% of Germans have sunbathed naked on a public beach.

The French are the least likely Europeans to go topless or nude at the beach.

Americans (8%) are about half as likely to have sunbathed topless as Canadians (15%).

Globally speaking, Indians, South Koreans, Malaysians, Singaporeans and Japanese are the least comfortable with nudity at the beach.

Leave the Speedo at home, unless in France

New beach survey may help travelers decide on appropriate swimwear.The study measures global tolerance of that most infamous of tiny triangular swimsuits.

Only half of U.S. beachgoers consider "Speedos/Speedo-like swimwear" to be acceptable beachwear.

Don’t even think about strapping on one in Japan or Norway, where respectively only 29% and 34% of respondents recognize Speedos as appropriate. 

The French have the highest tolerance for Speedo devotees (91%).

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Walking on the beach (78%) is the most popular seaside activity for Americans, followed by people-watching (64%), swimming (61%) and rolling around on a towel like a sausage in a pan (i.e., "sunbathing," 56%).

Americans also report that they buy new outfits (46%), work out (33%), diet (26%) and get waxed (13%) before embarking on beach vacations.

C'mon, get in, what are you afraid of?

Not all nationalities bring the same anxieties to the beach.

According to the survey, when at the beach, Americans most fear, in order, theft, drowning, sharks and jellyfish.

The overwhelming top fear among Singaporeans is sharks (85%), with 40% of Singaporeans saying they won't swim in the ocean because of sharks. About 40% of Americans fear sharks, but only 7% say they avoid the water for that reason.

Indians beachgoers are the biggest lovers of building sanding castles. They’re also the most active beach bums -- playing the most water sports -– as well as the group that gets the most massages at the beach.

With or without their tops and bottoms, Germans swim at the beach the most (90%).

Germans second most favorite beach activity? Reading.

Maybe it gives them something to pretend to be doing while sneaking looks at their fellow free-wheeling sun worshippers.

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