There’s more to travel etiquette than being polite and patient.
The most important aspect of travelling is cultural immersion. Experiencing local things gives you a different outlook about a place. While different countries have difficult cultural norms and etiquettes, there are certain common behavioural practices that you should follow, no matter where you go:
Avoid clicking pictures of people without asking
The need to encapsulate every memory is understandable. But before capturing people, it’s important to know if they’re comfortable. So go ahead and ASK people if it’s okay to click them. If they refuse, understand and respect their privacy. When it comes to grieving, sad, or underprivileged people in particular, be very careful about their sentiments. "People don't want to feel like they're a human zoo," Janice Lintz, a travel expert told Bustle.
Dress in specific ways if the country’s culture calls for it
The liberal dressing phenomenon has become quite prominent in the recent years. But dressing the way locals do is respectful and it lets you experience their culture more closely. Consult your travel guide or agent to know about rules of dressing to be on a safer side. For instance, covering your head or legs might be required in certain places.
Translate into local language if possible
It’s not quite possible to learn an entire language at one go. But knowing the basic words is an added advantage because it’s easier to interact. Find out how you can greet or thank people. Make sure you pronounce everything correctly. If you get stuck anywhere, use Google Translate if it’s accessible.
Be cautious at religious places
Religious places need extra care and attention. It’s important to not offend anyone. If you spot any “no photography” signs, follow them seriously. Ask your tour guide or locals about any particular rules to be followed. Avoid making phone calls, talking loudly or scribbling on walls.
Study about your destination
Before visiting any place, enquire and read up on it’s important landmarks, cultural practices, and historical affairs. The internet has no dearth of material, but a good student would go beyond that and get more genuine guidelines. Ask locals or your tour guide on must-know things about a place.