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Traveling abroad can be an amazing experience.  Exploring new cultures and foreign countries is an adventure of a lifetime. This experience can easily be ruined by poor traveling etiquette. When traveling around the world, there is a standard every tourist should hold themselves to. This is the international travel etiquette you should stick to:

Do Research Ahead of Time

Every culture and tradition will have its own set of rules and customs. What may seem normal to them, will be unknown to you. This is why it is important to research and learn as much as you can about your destination before going. To avoid being disrespectful in any way or overstepping, prepare yourself for what you might encounter. This will give you the chance to learn the history and traditions of the country before being able to experience it for yourself.

You are the Guest

When someone welcomes you into their home for the first time, do you come in to throw your shoes on the ground, rifle through their things and make yourself right at home? Let’s hope not. The same goes for visiting new places around the world. When the people of a country or city open their home to you, it’s important to remember that you are just a guest. This means being courteous in your interactions, being friendly to everyone you meet, and remaining respectful. This will get you a long way in a new place. When you are respectful, locals will be much more eager to show you around and lend help if you need it.

Learn the Language

There’s no need to become fluent in Italian if you are traveling to Tuscany, but learning a few phrases will be very helpful. It’s important to remember that not everyone speaks English. Make sure to learn some of their languages and ways of speaking to get by. For example, nodding your head in Greece is rude, shaking your head in Bulgaria means “yes”, and yelling a greeting in the Netherlands is bad taste. Even if the country’s main language is English; keep in mind most English speaking countries will differ in lingo and slang.

Taking Pictures

Capturing some of the best sights and memories with pictures of your adventure is a favorite for anyone who likes to travel. That being said, there are some instances where taking a picture can be considered rude or disrespectful. For example, snapping a picture of yourself at ancient burial grounds is incredibly rude. There are also some places that will not allow selfie sticks and bringing one along is disrespectful. Think before taking a picture and check with a local to make sure it is okay.

When traveling to a new country, you’re going into someone’s home. It’s important to be respectful of their culture and traditions. This will give you the best opportunity possible to get to know the people of the country and experience their everyday culture.