Travel advice abounds. But not everything is worth following. Especially the saying that you should ‘never do coach tours’.
Bus tours aren’t always bad. Travel guides are not all scalpers. Street food doesn’t always need to be navigated with a 10ft pole. It’s true: while cargo pants experts like to think they know it all, not all travel advice should be taken to heart. It turned out to be the Reddit recently, where a user asked r/travel Reddit community: “What common travel advice are you deliberately ignoring?”
“I think Rick Steves [an American travel writer] did a lot to get people out of their comfort zone and see the world, but the recommendation of detachable nylon cargo pants, sturdy boots, multi-pocket hiking shirts and safari sun hats for hanging out in a European capital drinking coffee and seeing museums always seemed a bit over the top.”
“You do, of course, but I’ve always felt more comfortable wearing more clothes and wearing normal clothes, unless I’m going to the mountains.”
Reddit user u/jolros
The question elicited a wide range of responses. One user, for example, said he strongly disagrees with the idea that you shouldn’t eat fresh fruit when traveling.
“Why do you think I even came here?!?!” they said. Others made similar remarks about street food.
The majority of responses, however, came in defense of coach travel. Although our inner travel snob recoiled in horror at the thought, it actually makes a lot of sense. Take for example, Reddit taken by user Kingjoe97034.
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Topping 2.8,000 upvotes, he said: “Sometimes when you’re short on time, a lame bus tour to Pompeii or the Acropolis is better than planning it yourself.”
“It’s great to be a cool, savvy world traveler, but once in a while it’s nice to do the lame tour.”
Reddit user Kingjoe97034
Reddit user r/uber_shnitz also chimed in, adding, “I thought they [organised excursions] were lame too, but honestly having someone explain the history and cultural significance of a site to you is better than me googling it as I try to line up trains to get back to my Airbnb/hostel/ hotel.”
Not to be outdone, another Reddit the user wrote, “I love that you can ask them other questions too. This is how I learned that there were different currencies in Cuba, the tourist currency and the local currency. I forgot HOW we broached the subject, but I learned a lot about the history and culture by having a guide. And she was quick to point out “tourist trap” restaurants and gave better recommendations that [sic] I had originally planned to eat at.
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Two other stories penetrated our brains significantly. The first was a small group tour in Italy, which changed the way we Reddit user watched “lame ass tricks” forever.
“I took a short trip to Italy a few years ago with my son”, Reddit says the user. “I didn’t want to deal with renting a car, but still wanted to see a bit of Tuscany, so I (reluctantly) booked a wine tasting tour in Florence. The best decision I could have made. Small group with someone else driving so I could just sit and enjoy the overly generous tastings. We always talk about how fun it was.
The second story involves a Reddit user sharing how they managed to get ten precious minutes in the Sistine Chapel on their own. How? Read the exchange below.
“Did an early Vatican entry tour and it was money well spent,” a Reddit says the user. “We almost had the place to ourselves.”
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Another one Reddit the user then came to swing. They wrote: “This is absolutely the way to see the Vatican. Before it was a formal practice that they sold tours for, my mom used to drag me there at 4 a.m. so we’d be first in line for the day, and we’d sprint through the museum so we could have ten precious minutes in the Sistine Chapel with no one but us and a guard.
Holy fumes. Genius. Why didn’t we think of that?