In case you’ve ever wondered how to make yourself into the PERFECT tourist in Austria, please keep reading!
Mandi’s Guide to Becoming the Model Austrian Tourist
- Lights, camera, action.
Keep your camera around your neck at all times. Make sure it is the largest one you can find, and that when you take pictures or turn on the camera it makes a lot of noise. This is the tourists’ mating call.
Be prepared! Perhaps consider keeping your camera in front of your eyes during your entire stay in the new location. You must always be ready for the next photo moment! Leave no stone unphotographed!!
Selfies are meant to be taken everywhere. That’s what this trip was for, after all—pics or it didn’t happen!
Speaking of selfies….
Never leave home without your selfie-stick—that unbelievably amazing pole that lets you annoy everyone in the castle while simultaneously capturing you and your bestie’s delight at the silver chandelier! Especially if photos are not allowed. Those rules do NOT apply to you.
- Bring Friends!
Preferably, at least six of them. Make sure they are all from your home country (hometown is even better), and please ensure that you all speak the same language. That way, you can spend every waking moment together and never have to speak to any of those “locals” with their weird language!
When traveling, bring everyone with you. Nobody left behind. You must travel in herds of at least six and up to even twenty… this is the best way to ensure you (and the locals) have a good time!
- Learn the Art of Complaining.
Take this golden opportunity to further your complaining skills. Take every possible opportunity to express your discontent.
Feel free to assume that every person you meet will speak your regional dialect. “Of course, they’ll speak [Central Mandarin, Southern American English, Hindi]!” If they for some god-forsaken reason do NOT speak your language, you know what to do—complain to everybody with ears!
Make your preferences as picky as possible. If your food is too hot/cold, spicy/bland, fast/slow, or colored differently from the way you’re used to it appearing, you know the drill!
Do your best to appear as though you know your homeland does things so much better than this one—and you can’t wait to get back there!
- Raise your voice!
People in foreign countries (other than yours) don’t have ears. You must speak loudly, and try to make sure they can read your lips.
For some reason, your traveling companions will suddenly become hard-of-hearing as well. To prevent miscommunication, please yell whenever you speak to each other. This especially applies when in public places (such as streets).
You are also on a mission to prove to all the “locals” what an amazing singing star you are back home. Sing (loudly) along to every pop song you hear—Jason DeRulo doesn’t sound half as good as you do!
- Buy all the things.
Please, by all means, take this opportunity to rob the foreign country of every last keychain, postcard, calendar, snowglobe, and T-Shirt they ever thought of producing.
The “locals” see these things as signs of your support of their country. Please wear/carry them proudly during your entire stay! Everyone must be able to tell which town you recently visited—by reading your shirt.
This is the time to take home 30 kilos of Mozartkugel Chocolate. Perhaps consider purchasing another carry-on bag?
- Be determined to maintain your diet.
This means, you are strictly forbidden from ordering anything at a restaurant that you don’t recognize. If you ask the waiter what it is and you’re still not sure, just stick with the French Fries.
Food in other countries is undercooked, poorly seasoned, and just plain dangerous. You must be prepared for this shock to your system. Perhaps consider bringing along some of your hometown food in your suitcase.
Don’t worry, Pepsi, Dr. Pepper, Mountain Dew, or [American Soda Name here] fans! You can keep up your soda guzzling here. If the eateries happen to not have your favorite, refer back to #3. Make your demands known!
- Be Fashionable!
This is your chance to rock flip flops, Hawaiian shirts, stilettos, or bootie-shorts! You want to identify yourself as being as different as possible from those “locals.” Therefore, you must dress the part of the perfect tourist.
Now is the perfect time to support your favorite sports team by proudly bearing their jersey—especially if you’re a soccer fan, and the team you support is German.
Please assume that you’re the most fashionable person in this strange country. You are! Strut your stuff proudly, and don’t mind the looks you’ll likely receive—they’re just jealous!
- Prepare for Craziness.
People in other countries are just plain nuts. You will see and hear people doing things that you would never dream of doing back home.
“Do you REALLY bicycle EVERYWHERE?” “I don’t need to separate my garbage.. I never do that at home…” “Why is everybody dressed like that?!”
Be prepared to capture every single strange thing you see, using the skills you learned in #1. The people back home need to see how weird these people REALLY are.
Don’t worry. The way people behave back home is the better, safer, and more productive way, and everybody knows that. Be comforted by mentioning your homeland as often as your sentences will allow.You’ll be back there soon in any case.