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Be A Better Traveler

5 "be a nicer traveler" travel tips

How not to be that other gal…

When some people go on a trip they think the world revolves around them. Don't be that gal. Nobody helps that gal. Nobody likes that gal.

In fact THAT gal is usually the one who finds herself at the wrong end of a robbery and returns home spouting lies about how dangerous and ill-mannered the nation of (fill in the blank) is. Now, I’m sure none of YOU are like that, but here are 5 common (and easily forgotten when overcome by the tired) self-centered actions to be aware of while traveling.

1.    Share the juice, don't monopolize it. Many airports have shut down power to the wall outlets and instead offer charging towers. Don't be the girl that plugs in every mobile device she has, leaving no room for others who need to power up.

2.    Be patient while waiting in line. This means hotels, attractions, restaurants, wherever. Don't push to the front demanding immediate attention, or stand huffing and grumbling about the line while shifting your weight from foot to foot. People notice that stuff and it doesn’t fill them with the warm and fuzzies either. You'll get to the top of the Eiffel Tower in good time, just like everyone else.

3.    Be generous with the photo-op. Just because it's your lifelong dream to see Machu Pichhu, don't post up at the old city gates and take a thousand pictures of yourself. Take a couple then move aside. Other people have dreamt of being in that spot too. Soak up your arrival in other ways and let them have a turn.

4.    Know your language barrier etiquette. If someone speaks only a little English or you only speak a little of their language, don't position yourself two inches away from their face and yell at them in hopes they'll understand better. Elevated volume at point blank range doesn't increase comprehension, but it does a great job of making people uncomfortable. Instead use hand gestures, talk slowly and smile.

5.    Share your excitement, smiles, and good intentions with strangers, not your complaints. Expressing your traveling gripes with fellow travelers or locals does not, in any way, encourage them to help you out. Dole out positivity and watch it come back in an avalanche of altruism. 

It's easy when you're traveling to slip into a well of self-centeredness, to be fully absorbed in what you came to see and do, and dangnabit you're going to do everything in your power to get that accomplished. And by all means, accomplish it, but don't forget to bring your patient, kind and conscious self on the road with you.

You, and everyone around you, will have a better experience because of it.

What are nice-girl travel tips? Share them in the comments. Find us on Twitter or Facebook and let’s start talking!

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