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Be it at a Supermarchet in Biarritz or at a bar in Andalusia, as an Island nation us Brits have an intangible, almost sixth sense when it comes to spotting each other abroad. We've compiled a list of some of the subtle (and not so!) nuances:
1. Impeccable Airport Etiquette
You've been waiting 4 hours to board a delayed transfer flight from Amsterdam to New York, and the first ticket desk begins to stir with life. A scrum begins to form around the counter, as people of all nationality push and barge to get on first, despite there being a seat calling system. But where are the Brits? They've already formed a queue trailing all the way back to the Toblerone gift shop, and save for a quiet tut or triple check of their passport and boarding pass, they're a picture of civilised behavior.
Ricky from Milton Keys, at the back of the queue, knows full well his seat's in row 4, but he'll be damned if he's going to make a nuisance out of himself.
2. They're suckers for a novelty gift
There is an ancient Chinese proverb:
'If you go to the Gran Canaries and come back without a sombrero, did you really go at all?'
When you see somebody stuffing one into the over head storage on the plane, you can bet your lucky stars that they're going to be British. We're a sucker for some nice holiday memorabilia, it's just a shame we wouldn't know what that looked like if it danced naked in front of us with some maracas.
3. Factor 50? Is that a band?
They've been asleep by the pool for the best part of 5 hours, and have bronzed better than a Christmas Turkey - a very, very overcooked turkey. Let's not forge the classic panda eyes sunglasses either!
It's a good thing hot weather isn't a guarantee in the UK, because nobody would make it through the summer!
4. There's no such thing as correct change
They've had the right change in their hands for the bottle of Pinot Noir since they left the isle with it. You saw them check it again as they waited in line, and once more as they handed it over to the cashier. But still, because they're not the usual pieces shrapnel they dig out of from behind the sofa in their day to day lives, they find themselves rooted to the spot, eyes locked on the teller as they tot up the coins.
The teller nods, pops it through the till, and looks up, a bit surprised to see the customer still there waiting. He nods again,thanking them. With a huge sigh of relief, the Brit leaves the shop.
Thanking the Lord that this particular exchange is over, blissfully unaware they're going to have to go back in a few minutes because they forgot the crisps.
5. 'TABLE FOR 4, PLEASE'
They want directions to the local park. The phrase book bought in naivety continues to sit unused at the bottom of Dad's rucksack. Instead he has opted for emotive hand gestures of throwing a frisbee, whilst speaking in such a loud and obnoxious manner that the window cleaner he has corned is more likely to direct him in the opposite way, out of pure spite.
If you did have any niggling doubts, a distressed 'Someone around here must understand English' will for sure put these to rest.
In reality, the list could go on and on. But I've had just about enough cringe for one day, haven't you?
Lucky for you, booking with Sam Smith Travel means you get the expert opinions and advice of our veteran bookings staff, and you can avoid any fellow tourists completely when you shoot off on one of our latest offers!