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Visit Britain thinks Germans are rude, Australians intolerant and Russians cold

Wednesday, January 8th 2014 - 21:21 UTC
Full article 31 comments

VisitBritain, the UK government’s agency with a budget of nearly £30 million a year and tasked with bringing as many visitors to the UK as possible, releases a detailed inside guide on tourists from most destinations for use by British hoteliers and operators. Read full article


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  • golfcronie

    Brilliant UK, tell it as it is,the truth should always be told, look at the Ashes, Ok the team we put out was not good enough on the day, but the abuse and barracking is something regrettable.I would say typical.

    Jan 08th, 2014 - 09:58 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • toooldtodieyoung

    This is going to end up as some sort of modern day, Fawlty Towers sketch isn't it?

    Jan 08th, 2014 - 10:07 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Room101

    What a load of cobblers.

    Jan 08th, 2014 - 10:23 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • screenname

    I've always found Germans to be polite and friendly, while the Russians I've had the misfortune to come into contact with have always been rude, and arrogant rather than just plain cold.
    The comments on the French are a bit wide of the mark as well from my experience: no issues with eye contact or smiles.

    Jan 08th, 2014 - 10:30 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Xect

    Its funny and shows the level of competence of some areas of government who attempt to stereotype entire nations!

    It is another excellent example of 'the good ideas club'

    Jan 08th, 2014 - 11:44 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Math

    I believe stereotyping is natural. But I think Russians and some other slavs are NOT cold. By cold, I mean a more rational, “self-centered”, introspective person/people. They are the opposite of us latin americans (and why not the eurolatins/mediterraneans): they hide good emotions, but show the bad ones. Generally, anger and frustration. Northern Europeans and East Asians are the cold, balanced ones. Don't you think? :)
    Anyway, a friend of mine sees some french and he said that it is true that they stink. The women are gorgeous, but they smell sweat and perfum.
    Also: Irish fart in public (at least, in night clubs).
    Brazilians tend to comment about some hygiene habits of Europeans in general, but they think New World Europeans are cleaner... until they travel Argentina and the US.
    Japanese beat the crap out of us in clean habits, though. They are strong!

    Jan 09th, 2014 - 01:37 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • paulcedron

    they forgot to say that british tourists are considered the worst of the world by far

    Jan 09th, 2014 - 02:11 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Anglotino

    Actually not sure what Golfcronie was going on about in post number 1, but I have no issue with the stereotyping by Visit Britain.

    However this article has deliberately misquoted in the header and poor Nostrils is not here to utilise it.... however the B Grade team should be along soon.

    The original quotes were:
    “Many Australians can have a very sarcastic manner - this can be a challenge at times to decide if they are serious or not when telling you something”

    100% correct!

    “Humour is always key when talking to Australians. Don't take offence to jokes about ”Poms“ - it is more a friendly endearment than an intended insult.”

    100% correct!

    “Remember that they may have not slept for 30 hours and could show signs of intolerance”

    Our punishment for having a country at the arse end of nowhere, however I can't argue it isn't true as I think anyone not sleeping for 30 hours would be pretty intolerant.

    All up. Pretty truthful I reckon.

    Jan 09th, 2014 - 02:19 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Vestige

    facking vindalu you slaaags

    Jan 09th, 2014 - 03:16 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Heisenbergcontext

    @1 Golfcronie

    This 30 million pound 'guide' is about how foreigners behave in Britain, not how Britons are greeted abroad - do you understand the distinction?

    Nonetheless, if your sensibilities have been offended, I apologize on behalf of my hairy-chested brethren. Oh, and congratulations to Stuart Broad and Matt Prior for rescuing a tourist from jumping off Pyrmont Bridge.

    Jan 09th, 2014 - 04:31 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Eddieposted

    @7 paulcedron
    That report is 7 years old and claims UK tourists were 5th - not “the worst of the world by far” as you claim.

    Jan 09th, 2014 - 05:37 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • willi1

    I´m willi, the German.
    thank you for opening my eyes on my behavior.
    some days ago I thought we Germans really should start to normalize our meanings about the British despite of the experiences of most mediterranian hotels with the British. I personally never had bad experiences with the British. Especially when reading how poor they are at time being (according to German newspapers). We should visit them and leave some coins in their marvellous (really!) country. But then: The left traffic. Oh dear. Is that why we have so few British in OUR marvellous (really?) country?

    Jan 09th, 2014 - 08:33 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • lsolde

    l suppose a lot of people fit their stereotype, but not all.
    You can't make generalizations(or is that generalisations! lol!).
    l have friends from many of those nations listed & they don't act like this article has portrayed them.
    But to assist the tourist industry, you have to start somewhere, even if only to satisfy the tourists.

    Jan 09th, 2014 - 09:35 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Anglotino


    That's the worst command of English I've ever seen from a German. A bit blau when you were typing?

    Oh by the way, the fact your apostrophe came out as an accent which is not used in the German language was quite telling. Seems your keyboard is set to a romance language..... like Spanish.

    This site has honestly become bedlam incarnate in the last month.

    Jan 09th, 2014 - 09:59 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Faz

    My personal expereience of foreign tourists in England is that they all try to be friendly and charming. I would like to apologise for this rubbish report and point out that it probably cost a tiny amount , not £30 million. To stereotype people in this fashion is stupid. As for the British abroad, yes, we have the unruly young chav element that go to party places like Aya Napa and Ibiza, and we are ashamed and disgusted by them. But, they are a tiny minority.. The vast majority of Brits are decent well behaved inquisitive people who want to see and enjoy the wide world.

    Jan 09th, 2014 - 10:53 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Furry-Fat-Feck

    The report is a waste. It is unhelpful and largely inaccurate. One experience I had on a photographic weekend in the Lake District was an Australian lady who complained vociferously and with a small level of vindictiveness about black pudding and I thought 'well. It's not for everybody' but as respectfully as he could her equally Australian husband tried to get her to see a different perspective. After all SHE had asked for the black pudding, SHE had been politely warned by the proprietress and her husband who already knew exactly what black pudding was, SHE had said that was fine and now SHE was making a complaint about it. She was being unreasonable and as much as he loved and cared for his wife her husband clearly thought so too.

    What does this prove? Feck all. People are people wherever they come from. Pigeon holing nationalities is bunkum.

    Jan 09th, 2014 - 12:10 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Britworker

    Has anyone ever seen Russian tourists in Egypt. They all look like they have just dropped out of the 80's and the way they speak to the Egyptians is nothing short of shocking. Never had a problem with a German, generally very nice and polite. The rudest people I have ever known abroad are French Canadians. Had to laugh, the Chinese don't like filleted food cos it's boring , yeh it does bark or meaow!

    Jan 09th, 2014 - 12:24 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • willi1

    @14 anglotino:
    you should be thankful that other people make effort to come into talks with British. Have you any knowledge of the German language?
    anglotino doesn´t sound as original British. you wrote: “...the worst command of English...” you mean: “comment”. I would never give a command to a British!! But I give a recommendation to you to better look what you have written - in English. Otherwise you fall under this category: “This site has honestly become bedlam incarnate in the last month.”

    Jan 09th, 2014 - 12:39 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Furry-Fat-Feck

    18 willi1 (#)
    Jan 09th, 2014 - 12:39 pm

    These words “the command of English” whilst not strictly correct do however make sense.

    On the others hand “the comment of English” makes no sense at all.

    By “the command of English” Anglonitno means the English language, not the people and seeing as English is a Germanic language it should not be difficult for a real German to understand this...........

    Jan 09th, 2014 - 01:00 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • paulcedron

    you are right
    brits are 2nd worst according to this report of 2013

    Jan 09th, 2014 - 01:12 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • darragh

    Living in the West of Kerry as I do we get over a million tourists every year from all over the world. Consequently I feel I have something to add here:-

    Australians Fine
    New Zealanders Fine
    Brits Fine
    Yanks Fine
    Portuguese Fine
    Middle Europeans Fine
    Russians Fine

    I don't think I've ever met an Argentine so can't comment but we do get a lot of Spanish trawlermen who seem ....fine.
    etc. etc.

    but of course these are generalisations.

    The problems come with individuals who come to Ireland expecting the Hollywood version and are sadly disappointed when they discover Ireland is not like 'Ryans Daughter' or 'The Quiet Man'. I even had one American tell me that the Irish 'were just another bunch of European SOB's'

    One of the worst problems we have is young Americans who are not old enough to drink in the US but can drink legally here and of course one pint of Guinness and they turn into goggle-eyed monsters.

    I can see where 'Visit Britain' is coming from, well intentioned but lacking common sense, we had a similar thing issued by the Irish Govt a few years ago that caused uproar for describing Germans as people who like to 'hog the limelight' and the French as 'everything you've ever heard about them' - but there you go.

    Jan 09th, 2014 - 01:23 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Conqueror

    @12 Just why do you get up in the middle of the night, rush down to the pool, leave your towel on a lounger and then go back to someone's room? Ever come down in the morning and found all your towels floating (?) in the pool? Are people still concerned that “the Panzers will roll”?
    @15 Sorry. Most “foreigners”, and I've met quite a few as they pass through Customs, have an attitude on the level of “I'm a foreigner and am entitled to do whatever I like”. Big signs say things like “No meat”. Open a bag and find bacon, sausage, steak, earwigs, caterpillars, you name it. For some reason, foreigners seem to think there's no difference between 200 cigarettes and 2000 cigarettes. Just WHY would you want to put 40 litres of spirits in your bag? and it's not a “report”, it's a guide. But the comment on Indians, and similar nationalities, is quite accurate. Example: “Have you read the notices about Customs allowances and rules about what can be be brought into the UK”? “Yes”. ”Why do you have these 3,000 bidis (atrocious Indian cigarettes) in your bag“? ”Do not understand English. These cigarettes are smaller“. Que?
    @18 We understand ”achtung“, ”einsatzgruppen“, ”fuhrer“, ”gestapo“, ”gruppenfuhrer“, ”heil“, ”jagdpanzer“, kameraden”, “nuremberg”, “reich” and “Schutzstaffel”. What else do we need?
    @20 Have you ever met a British tourist? If you actually “read” that article you linked to, you'd see “much of a muchness”. Not what you were interested in though, was it? Try reading what was said about Brazilians and Italians.

    Jan 09th, 2014 - 01:48 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • ElaineB

    There is an element of truth in stereotypes or they wouldn't exist. Often they can be traced back for centuries. That said, anyone lucky enough to travel widely, have an open mind and a sense of humour will know that not everyone fits a stereotype. There are good and bad, cultural differences and acceptable behaviour to add to the picture.

    I had some U.S. friends staying over the holidays and they loved it when something happened that reinforced a stereotype of the English, and we played it up a bit to entertain them. Nothing delighted them so much as a pub landlord calling them guv'nor or the pompous grandeur of the Royal Opera House, or talking to real bobbies on the beat. They even insisted we had fish and chips one night. My point is stereotypes can be endearing, amusing and entertaining too.

    Jan 09th, 2014 - 02:57 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • ChrisR

    Thanks to everyone who has made me laugh reading these posts.

    Nothing like stereotypes to bring the best and the worst out in ALL peoples I see.

    Jan 09th, 2014 - 03:45 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • A_Voice

    Hahaha..that is really funny...
    A German, Willli getting stuck into Anglotino...and he doesn't like it....;-))
    A German and an Aussie arguing about English Grammar...that's like the blind leading the blind...
    If you are going to chastise someone, get it right.....
    ....“That's the worst command of English I've ever seen from a German”
    ...That's the worst command of the English language I've ever seen from a German.
    ...and Willi
    ..“the worst command of English”
    ..if you were alluding to the English as a people, one would use the definite article..“the”, ...command the English“...
    Take it as advice, not a reprimand as your English is better than my tourist German, which amounts to...”Ein Bier bitte”...
    So that's how they do it....Damn...whilst on a cruise those Germans always beat me to the pool loungers no matter how early I got that I know, in future the towel will be going into the pool along with the German if they dare to take offence.

    Jan 09th, 2014 - 04:03 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • paulcedron

    “Have you ever met a British tourist?”

    luckily we don't have many british tourists here, except for the polo season.
    some of them are kind of disgusting, drinking and vomiting as their main activity.

    and the rest are a bit ridiculous, dressed as if they were going to a party when they are going to a polo match. but i guess that is just a feature of the new rich britons

    Jan 09th, 2014 - 06:44 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Eddieposted

    @20 no he was wrong when he said “ by far the worst” and your link claims 2nd from a limited unscientific poll including self assessment

    Jan 09th, 2014 - 06:53 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Anglotino

    A_Voice is still boring.


    Yes I do understand German. And it is weird, considering the capitalisation of nouns in German, that you seem to miss capitalisations at the start of a sentence. Very similar to another poster on here.

    Secondly, as I said, your apostrophe came out as an accent. Very similar issue to another poster. The problem was repeated in your second post.

    And third, I snuck a German colloquialism into my post that you totally failed to pick up on. Especially considering it was so blatant.

    Jan 09th, 2014 - 07:27 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • A_Voice

    I would imagine it's more boring trawling your way through Google translate and German idioms to appear clever....
    Anyone can do it Skip....I noticed it and ignored it myself, thinking oh here we go again, Skip trying to be Sherlock...again....

    Watch this...Das ist nicht dein Bier!..(None of your business)...yeah I understand German too...;-) ))
    Das ist mein Bier...Kraut!... (Kraut sotto voce).....I know that one.

    My guess it´s Aussie Sunshine you are referring, to don´t you....Sherlock...I mean Skip....

    Jan 09th, 2014 - 08:36 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • paulcedron

    visit britain?
    what for?
    do they have something similar to iguazu falls, or glaciers like perito moreno, can you watch the whales at 1 meter distance like in puerto madryn, do they have ski resorts in the middle of a mountain range like las leñas, beautiful beaches like in the costa brava or costa del sol, interesting architecture like in paris or barcelona?
    there are better options then

    Jan 09th, 2014 - 10:27 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • A_Voice

    ....are you kidding me?
    Why not look at the tourist figures for these places...... see it is to stand in wonder and amazement....
    Edinburgh Castle....
    York Minster...
    The medieval walled city or York....
    Many a time I've taken the ferries to the Scottish Isles and been shadowed by Killer's common.
    Also 30 foot Basking Sharks in the sea lochs......
    There was even a Sperm whale in Oban Bay just recently...right in front of the houses... have not been everywhere....

    Jan 10th, 2014 - 12:00 am - Link - Report abuse 0

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