Terrible Tourists: 40+ Truly Petty Travel ReviewsBy Abigail T
The pandemic has abruptly halted all our travel plans and robbed us of our holidays. We’ve all been stuck inside for too long, and we’re going a bit loopy. Wanderlust has never been as intense as it is now at a time when we can’t leave our houses. To cure some of that longing to travel, we’ve put together some hilarious travel ratings and complaints from various travel sites. Keep in mind that all these things surfaced before corona, where we still had the luxury of complaining about the way our travel guide looks, or about how hot it was outside lining up for a boat ride. Now, we would gladly follow any tour guide and queue up behind a long line of people if it means we’re getting out of here!
Disclaimer: photos in this article are for illustration purposes only. People or places in these photos are not to be associated with the specific travel reviews being discussed
Just a statue
You spend all your life watching films featuring famous landmarks. It builds up your expectations, so much so that it sets you up for disappointment when you finally get to visit the location in person. This traveler felt this exact way about the Statue of Liberty.
They gave the Statue of Liberty one star out of five in their review because it was apparently not as big as they thought it would be. While it isn’t the tallest monument around, paling in comparison to the Empire State Building located in the same US state, the statue still stands proud at 93m. It would seem like for some people, size does matter.
The great outdoors
If you choose an outdoor destination for your vacation, you shouldn’t be surprised when confronted with actual nature. Taking a trip to a national park or going camping will most certainly involve bugs, wind, heat, and everything else you have no control over.
One travel review for a certain outdoor destination complained about the bugs that bit on people’s faces. Um, newsflash, you’re outside! If the bugs bite at your face, it’s probably your fault for not coming prepared with repellent or bug spray.
What makes a child?
How old does a kid need to be before they are no longer considered to be a child? You could argue that everyone is a child to their parents, but that’s certainly not what restaurants mean when they say children eat free.
Somebody complained that a restaurant still charged their 19-year old daughter for her meal despite having a sign that said children eat free. Imagine the argument that must have ensued! And the restuarant is not in the wrong in this case!. A 19-year old is considered an adult in every country in the world.
“So many foreigners”
Some complaints are just completely ridiculous; we wonder how these people exist. This person decided to vacation in Spain and then complained about the fact that everyone around the area was Spanish and only spoke Spanish. Um, hello? You’re not the only person who travels around.
It’s almost disrespectful the way they complained about it. If you chose to go somewhere for your travels, what did you expect to find? That you would be the only visitor there? Or did you just think that Spanish people and Spanish food only belong in Spain?
A test of the taste buds
Do people choose to go to another country and not realize that they would actually be in another country? One traveler wrote in their review that they were disgusted by the fact that all the restaurants in India served curry. You’re in India, what did you expect to eat? Pizza?
To immerse yourself in the culture of a new place is one of the best parts of traveling. Foreign food is one of the best perks of visiting new places. If you don’t like spicy food, then maybe reconsider your travel destination next time. Do yourself a favor and avoid most Southeast and South Asian countries. Even if you’re going to go, maybe don’t be disrespectful about their food.
Word of advice if you’re not an expert on architecture—don’t comment on buildings and historical sites like you are one. Part of traveling is also appreciating the history and culture. Some old buildings may not be visually appealing to you, but they hold so much weight in that country’s origins.
We personally don’t see the problem with brown concrete and dim lighting. That sounds like a lovely place to check out, if you ask us. It’s not about the way this traveler described the location, it’s the fact that he was too bored to even care. To each his own, we guess.
An aversion to swans
Some people really take the “customer is king” adage too intensely. A traveler complained about the shape in which housekeeping folded the towels in his room. Apparently, he doesn’t like swans much. We’re sorry, sir. Would you like us to fold it into an elephant instead?
Even housekeeping doesn’t have the time to ask you what animal you would prefer your towels to be shaped in. Just unfold the towel, use it, and get on with your day. It doesn’t make any difference in the grand scheme of things.
Brochures are supposed to promote the establishment. They obviously won’t mention the bad aspects of staying there. They certainly will not mention the unnecessary things, like the fact that there are mosquitoes. Mosquitoes are everywhere; that’s just the way it is.
Somebody needs to learn not to consult the brochure too much. At the end of the day, it’s about adventure. You can’t find that in a brochure. Being too careful and precise about your travels ends up ruining the fun.
Dear madam, if you think anything sold by a street trader is the real deal, then you’re a little too naïve to be traveling. Did the price of these “Ray-Ban” sunglasses not give them away? There is no way you can get legit Ray-Bans for €5.
Authentic Ray-Bans are also not sold by street vendors. You’d have to go to an authorized store for that. We’re not sure if these people are just a tad dumb or if they actually thought they had purchased a steal.
Flights can take 24 hours or 2 hours, depending on how far your origin is from your destination. That’s just how geography works, and it’s only common sense. Apparently, for some people, this is a serious offense and worth complaining about.
So we guess what this person is trying to say is that they have a geographical disadvantage against the Americans… because England is just further away from Jamaica than America is? This complaint truly baffles us. We just can’t. Maybe a move to America is in their future?
Bring your own swimsuit
If anyone reading this has ever visited a water park that provided free swimming costumes and towels for guests, please let us know where this water park is. All the water parks we’ve been to only sold swimming gear at the most expensive prices.
Has this person just not been to a water park before? This criticism can only make sense if this is they are first time travelers. Otherwise, we won’t accept this as a complaint. Did they just expect to borrow the facility’s swimsuits that are just loaned out to different guests? That’s kinda gross.
Hotel telephones have shortcuts to make contacting various departments easier. You can reach reception, housekeeping, or room service by just pressing a button or two. But you can only do this if you press the numbers on the hotel phone.
We can’t believe this traveler thought they could reach the hotel reception by calling 9 on their cell phone. Just because they’re in the hotel doesn’t mean their phone magically connects to all the other phones in the hotel’s system!
Fish in the water
We’re not sure which destination this person visited. It could be a number of places from Seaworld to the Great Barrier Reef to a regular lake or pond. In any case, if it’s an attraction, there will usually be fish in the water.
Wouldn’t it be hilarious if this person had visited Seaworld or an aquarium and been shocked to find out that there were fish in the water? What did you even go there to see if not the array of fish and other sea life?
No bathroom on board
Certain modes of transportation provide bathrooms onboard. Buses, trains, planes, yachts, cruises. Whoever expected there to be a toilet on a canoe is grossly mistaken. Actually, now we are curious to know if anyone has ever seen a loo on a canoe?
This complaint is hilarious. Really? a toilet? On a small canoe? Second of all, you don’t go on an adventure in a canoe to be convenient. If you’re looking to relax somewhere that does have a toilet, maybe get on a cruise.
Here’s another person being inconsiderate of local culture. If you’re a visitor in a certain place, you’re the one who needs to adjust to the ways of the locals, not the other way around. Coming to a place with this person’s mindset just shows a level of entitlement that we don’t understand.
Some countries commonly close up shop around lunchtime to rest and relax before opening again in the afternoon. So no, sir, we will not keep shops open during siesta time just because you needed a pack of beers and a mint. Some travelers are just plain rude!
The brochure again
Wow, people. Are you just going to believe everything the brochure shows you? Many things affect the photos shown in travel brochures, from the lighting to the printing to the kind of paper it’s printed on. The brochure does not promise everything to be exactly the same.
This comment implies that these people wouldn’t have visited the destination if they had known that the sand was truly white instead of yellow. Imagine that! What’s so wrong with white sand? We don’t really see the problem here at all.
Across time zones
There are a lot of things you should take into consideration when you are planning on traveling. The weather, the culture, the food… the time difference. This particular reviewer seems to have forgotten that flying across the world means crossing time zones.
Complaining about the time really isn’t something any travel service can do anything about. The airline cannot refund you for missed connection because technically, you only missed it. After all, you were the one who forgot about the time difference.
A disappointing safari
We think the lesson here is to manage your expectations. Movies and documentaries may portray safaris as this exciting adventure through wide plains filled with an array of wild beasts. But depending on the season, and even the time of day, it isn’t always like that.
Animals follow a natural timeline as well. Maybe this person was there when all the animals were migrating elsewhere or when they just didn’t feel like roaming around to entertain a bunch of tourists. He was just unlucky only to see antelopes the entire week.
It’s called river rafting for a reason
Here’s our problem with high maintenance people trying to “go on adventures” – they can’t seem to handle it! They also have very ridiculous expectations. Take this woman for example. How on earth do you think you will stay dry on a river rafting trip?
Did you think you would be rafting on a yacht? Or in a giant hamster ball rolling along down the river? The tour company didn’t see the need to warn you about getting wet because it goes without say. Rafting is an extreme activity and is no place for your $300 leather handbag.
Fear of heights
Your fears are another aspect to consider before agreeing to any sort of extreme sport, adventure, or recreation. Otherwise, you may find yourself hundreds of feet of the ground and feeling like passing out. That’s what this one travel reviewer had to go through.
Again, we’re surprised at just how little common sense some people have. Did they think they were just going to sit in the basket on the ground?Where did they think they were going to go?Down a canyon? Under the sea? No! You only go up! Have you not seen the movie?
If you’re going to go on a ski trip, consider your own skills. Have you gone skiing before? Are you an expert skier, or are you only just beginning? Then you can answer the question of which slope you will ski down.
If you’ve heard that Snowbird is a tough mountain, then what did you expect the terrain to be like? It wouldn’t exactly be like the bunny slope, now would it? If you found it ridiculously tough, it probably means you weren’t ready for it yet.
Okay, this one really grinds our gears. You booked a beach vacation. Did you really expect not to get sand on you? If you want to tan without being in nature, laze by the pool instead. Maybe you should have gone to a rock beach instead of a sand beach.
We’re not really sure what else to say here. It is ridiculous to complain about a beach being sandy. Honestly, people who complain about everything on their vacation need to stay home and give the money to people who actually will appreciate traveling.
This person’s comment on the Mona Lisa is probably the worst critique of Da Vinci’s masterpiece. They thought that the painting, which is hung in the Louvre, was “too small.” We’re not even sure what that’s supposed to mean.
Did he think the painting would be a floor-to-ceiling fresco? Or did he just expect to be able to see it from far away, behind all the other tourists cramming to take a picture of it? What an incredibly odd thing to say about one of the greatest pieces of art in the world.
Milk always goes in the tea
Bad reviews at restaurants and cafes usually have something to do with the taste of the food, the quality of the service, or the establishment’s hygiene. The person giving the following review is just looking for little reasons to be silly.
We can’t see anything wrong with bringing milk for the tea in a separate jug. Maybe they just wanted to give diners the ability to control how much milk they want in their tea. If the restaurant had put a splash of milk more than this person would have liked, we guarantee they would also complain about it.
Whether this review is serious, sarcastic, or just plain honest, we appreciate the candor. This person said that their travels to Russia affected their self-esteem because the women were gorgeous. It’s a compliment to Russians in general, but definitely not a compliment for the traveler herself.
We hope she didn’t let the beauty of the Russian ladies ruin her trip. There are so many not to miss attractions waiting to be seen in Russia besides from the people. Whatever self-esteem issues she has to deal with, we hope she still enjoyed her holiday.
No air conditioning outside
Going through these reviews really leaves us wondering how some of these are even real. It looks like nobody has common sense. Take this person, for example. They went on a boat trip as part of their vacation and got upset that they had to line up outside.
Ma’am, just out of curiosity, where did you expect to be lining up for a boat? An air-conditioned ballroom? You’re out in nature. The wind is your air conditioning system. If you can’t handle that, maybe you should stay in your hotel room.
The tour guide
For the most part, tour guides are paid fairly little to take you around tourist areas and show you the sights. The least you can do is be respectful and leave a good review. For one traveler, the appearance of their tour guide deserved special mention in the review section.
Calling someone ugly is just rude, no matter who it is you’re referring to. All your tour guide did was direct and inform you on your trip. If you’re the one getting distracted by the way he looked, then maybe it’s your problem.
Why do people travel to other parts of the world and think that everything they know from home will also exist in a country halfway across the world? This is such a narrow- minded mentality. No, not every supermarket around the world stocks your precious custard creams.
The fact that they used the word “proper” biscuits implies that they don’t think the kinds of snacks that the stores in their destination provide are proper at all. It’s like they think they’re the golden standard of what is proper and acceptable. That’s just wrong.
If you’re from England traveling to any tropical country in any part of the world, you should be prepared with extra sunscreen with the highest SPF. Things may be drab and dreary in Old Blighty, but in Mexico, the sun burns all day.
It’s this guy’s fault for not wearing any sunscreen whatsoever. Being sunburnt is not fun. It ruins the rest of your trip because it leaves you in so much pain. Next time you’re traveling somewhere sunny, don’t wait for the warning. Just do your own research and come prepared.
My hangovers are your fault
This next travel review just sounds like this person was looking for an excuse to drink cocktails. It’s okay, nobody’s judging you for going on a drinking holiday. This person said the reason why they drank cocktails all week was because the water “tasted funny.”
If there was a problem with the water, they should have just gotten bottled water. There are so many other alternatives to water than cocktails. Nobody told them to get cocktails instead. That’s just a choice they made and had to live with. If it’s any consolation for them, not remembering details of your holiday usually means you had a pretty good time.
I expect molten lava in all my vacations
Some vacations take you to extreme places, like a town near volcanoes. One traveler went on one of these trips, and their mindset was a lot more extreme than anyone else on this list. They were disappointed to find no lava around them.
There’s no way of knowing whether this volcano was an active one. If it was, then they probably scheduled their trip at just the right time so that they didn’t get incinerated by molten lava. But if the volcano was dormant, then it’s only right that there wasn’t lava around. It’s ridiculous how many people travel without doing their research.
Blaming the airline for the weather
We understand that keeping children entertained on long flights is a difficult task. You can only let them watch so much in-flight entertainment before they start getting bored, wailing, and asking you whether you’re there yet. But complaining about the weather to the airline company isn’t really going to fix anything.
When you’re several thousand feet in the air, there’s virtually nothing to look at anyway but sky and clouds. How did you think you were going to play eye spy with your kids? You can’t blame the airline for flying you at the appropriate altitude to get you to your destination.
Kids don’t ride free
Some people love finding any little thing to complain about. The way the world works is that you have to pay for what you want and what you need. Plane seats are the same way. Why is this person so surprised that she had to pay for seats for each of her kids?
No matter how young your child is, you can’t expect to have them sit on your lap throughout the entire flight. That’s just a safety hazard for everyone involved. They need to be in their own seats with their own seatbelts. If you’re too cheap to pay for that, then maybe don’t travel.
Most people travel to immerse themselves in other countries’ cuisines. Food is an exciting thing to dive into, especially when you’re somewhere so foreign. Some people may be more open-minded than others, and there may be those who are stuck in their ways.
This is hilarious. Imagine this guest angrily calling the waiter to their table and complaining that he was finding it difficult to swallow his soup. “This soup is too thick!” they retort. The waiter stifles a chuckle, “Sir, that’s not the soup. That’s gravy.”
Your definition of authentic
After a few days in Rome, you’d probably want something else to eat other than Italian food. This traveler went to a Mexican restaurant for a change of scene but was disappointed. Not because of the food, but because the waiter was Italian.
Apparently, for this person, an “authentic” Mexican food experience also means that the waiters need to be Mexican. Sure, Italy is the best place for an authentic food experience… of Italian food. If you’re looking for the same kind of experience with Mexican food, maybe you should go to Mexico.
When this person heard that there was a rooftop pool, did he think that there was a pool above every single room in the hotel? Does he just not understand how roofs work? A rooftop pool would be located at the highest level of the building, plain and simple.
We’ll give this person the benefit of the doubt. Maybe it was his first time going somewhere that has a rooftop pool facility. Maybe they just didn’t understand the concept of a pool on the roof, or architecture for that matter.
No kangaroos in the city
Movies, TV shows, and documentaries have definitely set our expectations regarding certain parts of the world. The general knowledge that Australia is home to kangaroos can make some people expect to find them everywhere in the country.
We’re putting this out there for anyone who shares the same disappointment as this tourist. Kangaroos don’t roam around the major cities in Australia. It’s not like they’re stray cats or dogs. They are national animals found in the country’s zoos and rural spaces
I need a professionally equipped kitchen
Sometimes people choose to stay at an Airbnb or a serviced apartment because it allows them to cook. They can save on food costs to afford other things throughout the vacation. However, their expectations are ridiculously high for someone staying at an Airbnb.
The kitchens in these kinds of accommodations would usually come with some basic utensils like pots, pans, and plates. But to expect there to be an egg slicer is a little much. What are you going to ask for next? A sous vide machine?
Ever heard of Google?
Excuse me; it’s 2021. Why are you still carrying a guide book around? Haven’t you ever heard of Google? Just get a cheap phone SIM and Google your way around town. It’s easier, more flexible, and you can consult it from anywhere you want.
Travelers that are too reliant on the local guide book only inhibit themselves from true adventure. It’s okay to get a little lost. You’d be surprised what you find off the beaten track in other countries. Put the guide book down and just go where your feet take you.
Salt water in the sea
Saltwater? In the ocean? Outrageous! How did these people even survive snorkeling there? Just kidding. Did these travelers not know that the Gulf of Mexico is basically the ocean? Or did they just not know that seawater is salty?
It’s people like this, who can’t appreciate a good travel experience, that makes our heads spin. If you’re not going to enjoy your trip to the Gulf of Mexico, then give us your tickets, please, because we are in desperate need of a vacation.
Caging the animals at a national park
Yellowstone National Park is a large national park in the United States, spanning over 3,500 square miles. Although it’s mostly in Wyoming, the land crosses into Idaho and Montana as well. It’s home to canyons, rivers, and geysers, and you can bet wild animals are roaming around.
As its name suggests, Yellowstone is a park, not a zoo. There aren’t any enclosures. Animals roam free because that’s how they’re supposed to exist. You can’t just expect the park to start putting animals in cages because you came unprepared without doing any research.
That’s how currency exchange works
This travel review convinces us that there should be a Traveling 101 seminar specifically for people like this. The seminar should cover everything from respectfulness and navigation to basic principles about the time difference and currency exchange.
Dear sir or madam, your money is still worth the same as everyone else’s. It’s just the exchange rate that decreased the numbers. If you’re not even aware of how currency exchange works, how are you even traveling to other countries?
You’re in Spain
No, just because you speak English doesn’t mean every country in the world has to. You’re on holiday in Spain, so you can expect to meet Spanish people who speak Spanish. If anything, it’s your chance to learn a new language.
English may be the language of international business, but it doesn’t mean everyone has to bow down to you when you walk into the room. This mentality is what puts locals off towards tourists. There are so many ways you can communicate with locals these days. Maybe use the audio feature on Google Translate?
No burgers in India
Globalization may have brought chain restaurants to other parts of the world, but it doesn’t mean that you can expect every country to be ready with a McDonald’s. What’s the point of traveling if you only eat at McDonald’s everywhere you go?
Expose yourself to different cuisines and broaden your taste buds. Indian food boasts some of the richest and tastiest spices. It’s so fragrant and delicious, and if you’re going around India moaning about not being able to eat a burger, you’re missing out.