Yes, Morons Go on Holiday Too

touristsSaw this today on the Huffington Post, and it was just too good not to share.

These are actual complaints received from dissatisfied customers by Thomas Cook Vacations (based on a Thomas Cook/ABTA survey):

1. “I think it should be explained in the brochure that the local convenience store does not sell proper biscuits like custard creams or ginger nuts.”

2. “It’s lazy of the local shopkeepers in Puerto Vallarta to close in the afternoons. I often needed to buy things during ‘siesta’ time — this should be banned.”

3. “On my holiday to Goa in India , I was disgusted to find that almost every restaurant served curry. I don’t like spicy food.”

4. “We booked an excursion to a water park but no-one told us we had to bring our own swimsuits and towels. We assumed it would be included in the price.”

5. “The beach was too sandy. We had to clean everything when we returned to our room.”

6. “We found the sand was not like the sand in the brochure. Your brochure shows the sand as white but it was more yellow.”

7. “They should not allow topless sunbathing on the beach. It was very distracting for my husband who just wanted to relax.”

8. “No one told us there would be fish in the water. The children were scared.”

9. “Although the brochure said that there was a fully equipped kitchen, there was no egg-slicer in the drawers.”

10. “We went on holiday to Spain and had a problem with the taxi drivers as they were all Spanish.”

11. “The roads were uneven and bumpy, so we could not read the local guide book during the bus ride to the resort. Because of this, we were unaware of many things that would have made our holiday more fun.”

12. “It took us nine hours to fly home from Jamaica to England. It took the Americans only three hours to get home. This seems unfair.”

13. “I compared the size of our one-bedroom suite to our friends’ three-bedroom and ours was significantly smaller.”

14. “The brochure stated: ‘No hairdressers at the resort’. We’re trainee hairdressers and we think they knew and made us wait longer for service.”

15. “There were too many Spanish people there. The receptionist spoke Spanish, the food was Spanish. No one told us that there would be so many foreigners.”

16. “We had to line up outside to catch the boat and there was no air-conditioning.”

17. “It is your duty as a tour operator to advise us of noisy or unruly guests before we travel.”

18. “I was bitten by a mosquito. The brochure did not mention mosquitoes.”

19. “My fiance and I requested twin-beds when we booked, but instead we were placed in a room with a king bed. We now hold you responsible and want to be re-reimbursed for the fact that I became pregnant. This would not have happened if you had put us in the room that we booked.”

20. “We bought ‘Ray-Ban’ sunglasses for five Euros from a street trader, only to find out they were fake.”

I think one of my personal favorites was overheard on a water taxi in Venice. A horrific American family with two beefy teenaged boys was complaining about, well, everything, when one of the boys – we’re gliding down the Grand Canal in Venice, mind you – moaned that he hadn’t been able to lift weights in, like, two days.

Do you have any stories of idiots on holiday to tell? Please share!

Check out the woman in the background. Uhmmm...

Check out the woman in the background. Uhmmm…

21 thoughts on “Yes, Morons Go on Holiday Too

  1. I agree, but if you live in a tourist destination like I do, you get tired of people complaining about tourists. It’s the economy, stupid, deal with it or move on out. Thank goodness for tourists and their cash.


    • Agreed, Thomas. I grew up in Kennebunkport, ME, and the locals would always moan when the tourists arrived, and always moan if they didn’t. I worked with tourists for much of my younger years, and the vast majority of them were good folks (with money to spend). Tourism can be a curse in some areas, but in many cases it is the least destructive source of revenue, and can even save natural areas from destruction. Thanks for checking us out!


  2. When I was still working at our travel agency I escorted 125 Greek employees of a pharmaceutical company on their bonus trip to Kenya (for the record If you’ve never traveled outside your country of residence DON’T chose Kenya for your first trip). The following is a list of my top 5 favorite comments I got there.
    1. Is there a nightclub where we could have a drink??? it took us 5 hours to drive through the Amboseli National Park where the only things we got to see where wild animals in their natural habitat. After a very long drive through the park we arrived at our lodge which was in the middle of nowhere.
    2. During the only three hours of our 10 day trip where the phone connections were down (after all we were in the middle of nowhere) I got numerous complaints that they all needed to contact their loved ones, that it was outrageous that the lines were so bad.
    3. There is no air-condition in the room. OMG. Where the temperatures drop to almost freezing in the evenings I could not believe what my ears were hearing.
    4. The best night of the whole trip was the night we spent in Nairobi and went to the night club.
    5. There is no way I will wake up at 530 to go on the 630 Safari trip. I want to sleep.
    Out of the 12 minibuses we had while we were staying at the lodge only 1 left every morning at 630 with 6-8 people on it (out of which the German tour operator and myself were the only standards). Sad, but true.


    • When I read these I thought they were too ridiculous to be true, but after reading your own experiences I’m not so sure. It begs the question: What are these people doing there anyway? And I suppose the short answer is: They have more money than sense. Thanks for visiting, Tatu!


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  4. He was already laughing pretty hard, but my 6-year-old almost choked on his granola when I read him number eight. 🙂

    I don’t have any personal stories from my travels abroad, but I have some good ones from right here in the California…

    1) In a store I worked at on Seventeen Mile Drive near Carmel, a tourist who was impressed with all the deer they’d seen wanted to know when “they let the wildlife out.” A similar one has been heard in Yosemite… “What time do they turn the waterfalls on each day?”

    2) While hiking through the Giant Sequoia grove in Yosemite, a man behind me, who was clearly from New York, kept saying loudly over and over and over, “Ok, ok, it’s another tree already. Once you’ve seen one tree, you’ve seen them all!”

    3) When I was working in Germany, a German colleague was preparing to leave for a business trip to California. He asked me if it was safe to drink the water in the United States, as he’d heard it was so primitive. Seriously.


    • 1) Not in Yosemite, certainly, but we came across a lovely waterfall in the Spanish Pyrenees on one of our trips, threading down a steep rock face for maybe 40 meters. It was coming directly from an opening in the rock wall, which was clearly, if not man made, at least man-improved. The next morning we passed by again, and the waterfall was turned off. The outflow from a man-made lake. By afternoon they’d turned it on again, but it had lost some of its luster.
      2) At times I felt the same way about ANOTHER renowned ‘Madonna and Child’ when I was living in Italy, but in the redwoods? Never. A classic case of “WTF are you doing here then?” When I worked on a whale watch boat in Maine, I remember very clearly an SUV from NY screeching up to the desk where I was working, parking so as to block traffic, and two breathless parents bolting out to ask me: “Do you see whales every trip?”
      “This time of year, yes, but you know, they’re wild animals and…”
      “How long’s the trip”
      “Six hours. We travel 20 miles out into the Gulf of Maine and…”
      “Six hours? We could go to SeaWorld for the same thing and they do it on schedule!”
      They raced back to the SUV and, no doubt, sped down the road to furiously have their photos taken in front of the G. Bush estate.
      Some folks don’t get it, but I was pretty pleased that I wouldn’t be seeing them on the boat the next day.
      3) When my girlfriend and I were moving to Italy after university, her relatives – most of whom felt that a trip to New Hampshire (45 minutes) was a life-changing excursion – they admonished us not to drink the water. Yes, the birthplace of Renaissance, the land where 2000 years ago people went daily to public baths while my girlfriend’s – and my own – ancestors were living in dirt huts and believing that bathing was life-threatening, the home of Michelangelo, Dante, Da Vinci, Calvino, Fellini, Ferrari, Armani, the landscape where you could walk into the Appenines and sip water from burbling springs, this they considered so backward that the water was no doubt unsafe.
      Your colleague’s question would, these days, be in fact apropos. There are hundreds – perhaps thousands – of fracking sites in CA, none of which is required by law to be identified locally. That, I’m afraid, is more terrifying than the ancient Roman practice of death by vatful of lampreys.


  5. Oh, these made me laugh. And cringe.

    I don’t have any direct quotes to share, but when we were canoeing on the Bio Bay in Puerto Rico last April, all of us were awed by the spectacular display of nature and the dinoflagellates in this tiny cove of Vieques Island. All of us but one woman, who constantly compared the scene to North Carolina. She annoyed the crap out of all of us. She’s lucky we didn’t capsize her boat.


    • Should have dinoflagellated her. That’s definitely a possible destination for us – we looked into it last year but ended up going to Costa Rica instead. Is there good wildlife viewing and hiking there?


  6. Very funny post, I was laughing out loud by the time I got half way through….and I know I’ve met people like this on holiday….and I always wonder why they bother to travel. Just stay home where everything is just as you expect, if you can’t cope with change and difference!


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