I'm surprised this hasn't been covered before...it probably has, but I now have a real bee in my bonnet and had to have a rant!
What is it with some travellers that think they are so superior?
A bit of background - I posted a question on Thorn Tree forum, specifically on the India branch asking about wi-fi access and whether air con units in northern India have reverse cycle so they heat the room as well as cool, as we are worried about being cold in December.
Someone posted immediately after me saying:
why do i get so upset about people asking about Guest Houses with Wi-Fi connections, fax facilities, hot water, room service, a/c, etc etc etc? is it because i'm one of those grumpy old gits who tasted Asia in the 70's? Just wondered
What gives this person the right to judge how other people travel? Just because we need wi-fi access for our business, does this make us any less of a traveller than someone who doesn't need wi-fi? Or just because we opt for an air con room which is £2 more expensive and a nicer room all around makes us a 'bad traveller' in his eyes?
Why do people feel the need to categorise? For example, my boyfriend's brother has just booked his honeymoon - an all inclusive to Mexico. We don't like all inclusive holidays but we would never dream of telling him he is 'wrong' and should travel like us.
Everyone has their own style of travelling and it annoys me when some travellers - not just on Thorn Tree but in real life conversations we have overheard - try and belittle other travellers because they haven't seen the 'must see' sight, travel with a laptop or stay in a nice air con room instead of a hut with holes in. Or travellers who try and compete with everything we've seen. I feel like saying to them, yes we are travelling but we do have other things to talk about other than a p*ssing contest over who's seen what!
Everyone has their own travelling style but some people feel the need to be snobs and rude about it. Has anyone else come across this on their travels?
Sorry rant over, it just really annoyed me!!
[ Edit: Edited on Oct 23, 2008, at 11:14 AM by loubylou ]
I get where you are coming from here. It is irksome and a drag....But it is not just relegated to the travel group. Every walk of life has some supposed old timer who decides that they are the big fish in this particular pond and try to get up in everyone else's face about the feeling that "They don't know! I know!" All I can say is that you have to just let that water roll of your back.
And, listen, this comes from a guy who posted more than a couple "Asshole Travel Snob" posts myself. I remember one in particular where I was all incensed about a guy who wore his IPod everywhere, where I took the stance that he was missing fifty percent of the experience and should have stayed home.
I later apologized, because I realized that everyone travels differently and I had no business telling anyone anything. Hell, there are a couple on this board who constantly try to sound smarter faster and better than the rest. And if you ever get down to Granada, Honduras, for a real treat, stop in and meet Wayne, the owner of ZoomBar. Who will tell you that you don't know what you're talking about BEFORE you even open your mouth! The quote you gave actually has the guy having a little bit of a sense of humour about himself.
And, really, a guy who was bumping around in Asia in the 70's probably has a legitimate leg to stand on watching people making sure they have air con and Wi Fi and thinking "fuck, these kids got it easy"
Just take it as funny and keep moving.
Good luck out there.
I always get angry when people make comments like this too. some people are just so arrogant and self-rightous and I wonder whether they can really have a good time travelling with this kind of attitude. They must be so busy judging other people and whingeing and moaning that I'm surprised they have time to see anything or enjoy anything on their travels!
There seem to be plenty of people with this kind of attitude on the thorn tree forum, which is why I stopped going on it. Thankfully on TP these kind of people don't tend to appear too often.
I think you should all listen to me because I know everything (Sorry could resist)
I agree with Bex, TT is full of lurkers you dwell in their offices all day RSSing the posts. As soon as someone pops up a question they latch on and either release the hand of LP God upon them, or leave a two line smart assed comment.
About 10 years ago the TT used to be good. Then the masses got hold of it.
It happens to most forums. And low and behold if you happen to have a only 1 post. You are not worth to ask a question yet. Let alone hold an opinion.
I mentioned before about joining an IT forum 4 years ago upon its release. Nice place, nice people. I went back with a query a few months ago and got lambasted by prepubescent drips you were the top posters and only their opinions mattered. Even two of them teamed up. It had also become so crowded questions often slipped by.
With the TT I tend to keep it an impersonal as possible. Ignore the smart ass ones and never mention their comments. If you need, just ask a new question. Spammers too haunt the thing now. It still has a great knowledge base, and a few good people on there. Border info is important and good.
As I mentioned before TP Forums are very fresh and friendly. I wonder what they will be like in 5 years?
I mentioned before about joining an IT forum 4 years ago upon its release. Nice place, nice people. I went back with a query a few months ago and got lambasted by prepubescent drips you were the top posters and only their opinions mattered.
Are you aware of stackoverflow? I haven't yet had to cause to ask a question there, but I've come across it a few times in the last week, and it's looking really hopeful as the next big IT support site.
I love the snarky hints in their about section on how frustration with certain site got them started:
(Why that's funny will only make sense to people who have experienced the frustration caused by having to google for some very specific programming questions.)
I remember one in particular where I was all incensed about a guy who wore his IPod everywhere, where I took the stance that he was missing fifty percent of the experience and should have stayed home.
I've been that guy (albeit with a Rio Karma; no iPod for me!</snob> )
Especially when you've been in a place for a while and don't really get much value added by the sounds around you, it's great to have your very own personal soundtrack to a location; it can contrast or offset what you see in really amazing ways. (You haven't lived until you've walked like an Egyptian right at the top of a mountain ridge, far above the rest of the world.)
[ Edit: Edited on Oct 24, 2008, at 1:37 AM by Sander ]
People like to categorize--it helps them find their place in the world. Unfortunately, some people go from "you're a backpacker, I like hotels, he roughs it, she prefers cruises" to "you're an idiot if you don't travel like me". I don't get it: travel is what brings us together. That's why we're here (or on TT or wherever)--to share and compare and rant and understand and help. Those few who insult must have an inferiority complex or something. Why go out of your way to insult someone?
For the gazillionth time, I love TP because threads aren't left to degenerate into insults and you always feel welcome and at home.
I forgot to put in my original post that after I got all high and mighty on the IPod thing, I actually started travelling with an MP3 player( though not the IPod. A Sansa which is half the cost, just as good, better battery life and with all the extras you have to pay for in an IPod included) So things change.
If someone feels like need to make comments like that, it has more to do with them than with you really. I wouldn't let it bother me Loubylou. Times change, it's a fact. When he was travelling in the 70s those were modern times for him no doubt and much had advanced since he was running around as grumpy little git in nappies.
Let it over your head. Like many things in life, I think travel is something quite personal. Just because everyone else doesn't subscribe to his modus operandi, doesn't mean they are wrong.
Basically, he's just trying to be elitest. Good luck to him I say! He doesn't sound like he embraces change too well
Actually, you know something, you've just reminded me of a travel snob I met in Peru. I remember checking into a hostel in Arequipa and there was this guy sitting on the sofa - long hair, sandals, bent in concentration over the skinniest roll-up cigarette I'd ever seen. He wasn;t friendly at all, but I didnt think much of it.
Over the course of the next few days, I happened to end up spending a few hours or so in his company just having breakfast or watching TV. Every single day he had some gripe about some backpacker or other in the hostel - "She spends too much". "Look at him with his designer labels". I didnt escape either. He thought I went to too many restaurants He seemed to have an enormous chip on his shoulder about people who went to other countries and lived it up all the time. He pronouced proudly that he could survive on $5US a day.
I congratulated him on this feat, because honestly that is something I personally could not achieve I think. But he kept chipping away, basically nagging me every time I paid for something or went out with people from the hostel. Eventually, I just had enough of him, and I explained that while I had no quibble with his personal choice of surviving on $5 a day, that I couldn't really see how that was truly experiencing a country. All he ever did was sit in the hostel rolling his miserable looking cigarettes and bitching about everyone else. He had a long list of countries that he had been to, but I doubt he could recommend a good bar or restaurant or tourist attraction in any of the places he had visited. He didnt seem to talk to other backpackers much at all, and I never saw him outside mixing with the locals.
So, why was this guy travelling?
Bizarrely, I ran into the guys months later down in Chile and he was exactly the same.
I know I shouldn't let it bother me, it just annoyed me because I wanted a genuine answer not a snarky so and so who thinks he's a better traveller!
I felt like replying and saying that when my mum was pregnant with me didn't have a vaccuum cleaner, she used a brush thing to clean the carpets...so by this guy's reckoning we all shouldn't be using vaccuum cleaners too?!
Times do change but unfortunately not everyone sees this and some people like to go on about how much better it was 'in the days of Yore' which makes them think they are 'better' travellers than all others. I think I have to be more careful now, since coming away I have become a lot more outspoken and I think if I now met someone like that I wouldn't be able to hold my tongue! Let's just hope I don't meet anyone like that
Ev...that guy in the hostel, OMG!! what is the point of travelling to go and sit in a hostel and do nothing but bitch about other people?! he could have been in his own home flicking through a travel book! But, in the same respect, if he was happy with that choice, then who are we to judge his travelling style? He may have been experiencing all he wanted to by getting a stamp for a certain length of time in his passport!