Some things are too funny to let pass unremarked upon. One of the latest gems comes from the People’s Daily, a government run newspaper.
Lately, and with very good reason, Chinese tourists have been in the news. In 2013 a teenager wrote graffiti on a 3,500 year old Egyptian temple. Then there was the family that let their child poop in the aisle of an airplane instead of bringing him to the toilet.
Chinese people littered the Maldives so much that President Xi Jiping had to ask them to stop eating so many ramen noodles and littering. And who can forget the Chinese traveler who opened the emergency door on the plane to “get some fresh air,” and then another one, and another.
Truth is Chinese tourists are so notoriously misbehaved that the government is making it a priority to teach travelers manners, and even other countries, like Thailand, are taking their own steps to ensure Chinese tourists act better. (Thailand has printed up pamphlets in Mandarin to tell tourists not to pee or poop on the street, follow traffic laws, and don’t touch things in a museum.)
So, that’s not the funny part. (For the record, average Chinese people are just as shocked by these behaviors as we are. It’s not at all condoned and yet they keep happening.) The funny part is apparently, someone got sick of Chinese tourists being the bad guys, so they turned the tables.
The People’s Daily published this info graph showing foreign tourists behaving badly in China, and all the uncultured things they have been caught doing. I’ll explain it below.
I’m the last one to defend the idiot Americans and Europeans that come here, but the examples they picked for the infograph are just so hilariously bad. The first one is about girls in Cambodia who got busted for taking pics of them mooning in Ankor Wat. It’s a temple, and so disrespectful to be naked that the women immediately got deported. But c’mon China, it happened in another country.
The second picture shows tourists camping on the Great Wall (from 2009! Couldn’t they get a newer incidence?). It’s verboten to camp on the Great Wall, but anyone who has been there knows, it is done openly by many people–including Chinese. The locals have a whole market going on for renting sleeping bags and tents to people that want to do it.
The third one is the funniest one to me. It’s a few foreign guys who got off the bus and peed on the street. That is the kettle calling the pot black. Or more like the color black calling a pot black. You cannot walk the streets of China for more than 5 minutes without seeing someone pee on the street. Actually you can’t even walk the stores of China without seeing someone pee. I’ve seen two, count ’em, two kids pee on the floor in Walmart. With their parents encouraging them. And if you have ever taken a bus ride and got caught in traffic, you will see the entire male population of the bus pissing on the side of the road, and about half the females. If you’ve been unlucky, and I have, you’ll even see numerous people pissing on the stairwell of a moving bus because they have nowhere else to go and the driver won’t stop.
The next picture shows a foreigner from way back in 2007 swimming where he is not supposed to be swimming. That’s quite common in China. So one tourist who did it? Almost 7 years ago? A stretch.
The last bit is just “gotcha” pictures of tourists doing such atrocities as taking up too much space on a bench, sitting in a tree, doing dangerous things like standing on a railing for a picture and the father and son who dare, dare, to drop a bunch of popcorn on the ground.
I’m the first one to rail against arrogant tourist, and if the Chinese Government actually called some out, I’d be behind them. But these examples? These slightest infraction spanning years? It’s just too hilarious to take serious. I’ve seen foreign tourists do way worse things with my own eyes. (Like being abusive to Chinese people because they don’t speak English, or saying and doing openly racist things, or drunk shenanigans.) Either this newspaper didn’t look very hard to find bad examples or foreigners have been very lucky to not have pics taken of them when they are being dicks.
And really, I’m just disappointing in the government. Then can do propaganda waaay better than this. They must be too busy cracking down on the internet and keeping 50 Shades of Grey off download sites they let this one slip through their fingers.
This is hilarious! I’m glad you pointed it out and wrote a post about it. I really enjoyed it. I mean if this is all they got… well you’re right, they must be otherwise occupied.
Comparing Chinese tourists to American or European ones is like comparing apples to oranges. Most Chinese tourists are novice travelers and quite insulated from the outside world. Westerners have been at it for much longer and have better access to global info. Americans, when they first started traveling overseas, were considered the worse tourists in the world. Not so much now. Give Chinese tourists another 10-20 years to mature and learn, then it would be an apples to apples comparison.
I’m not comparing tourists from the different countries. I’m just pointing out the absurdity of the governments “criticism” of western tourists behaving poorly. Western tourists DO behave badly, I’ve seen it with my own eyes, and yet this newspaper chose to highlights very bland things. I’m laughing at how dumb the newspaper is, not the tourists.