7 Reasons Why Travelers Suck. (Either #4 or # 7 will offend you.)

Is this you?

Is this you?

When I say that…

Travelers are mostly vapid, gutless and intoxicated.

It’s my cognitive dissonance remarking on the differences between the noble philosophies travelers claim and what I’ve actually observed.
Maybe I’m a little bitter because I was sold this romantic image of travelers as introspective, conscious, philosophical, adventurers and cultural novelty junkies when in actuality they are just very ordinary people who want to escape their day to day responsibilities back home and have a beer somewhere warm. I had imagined my conversations with other travelers being full of lively discourse and discussion of philosophy, cultural experiences and personal development as a result of travel. Instead it’s mostly just about:

  • How hungover they feel.
  • What’s the Wifi password.
  • Where to order pizza.
  • The quality of the local narcotics.
  • How cheap hookers are in this or that country .
  • And of course trying to find the best deals on airfare and lodging.
I’ve spent 16 months away from home, a year of that living in Colombia. Despite the jaded tone of this article I’ve made a lot of really amazing friends; with fellow travelers, locals and expats that I’m thankful of. However, don’t think that this is just a rant based upon a couple sour experiences abroad, these are observations of a statistically significant sample size of thousands of travelers I’ve spent time with…
+2000 years ago the philosopher Seneca made the keen observation that travelers are mostly just avoiding taking responsibility for themselves: ”They make one journey after another and change spectacle for spectacle. As Lucretius says ’Thus each man flees himself.’ But to what end if he does not escape himself? He pursues and dogs himself as his own most tedious companion. And so we must realize that our difficulty is not the fault of the places but of ourselves.”

Why do travelers suck…?

The Ethnic Comfort Zone

Most travelers make little to no effort to get outside their ‘ethnic comfort zone’; meaning that the gringos (North Americans, Europeans & Aussies) usually hang out with other gringos, correspondingly the Latin Americans usually just hang out with other Latinos (Especially Argentineans and Chileans in particular, travel in large, hard to befriend groups. Don’t worry I will pick on other Nationalities later!). Israelis also travel in very close knit groups but make a little better effort to mingle… Any one who’s spent much time in hostels has had the experience of walking into a hostel social area that resembles an ethnically divided middle school dance. I’m not accusing travelers of being blatant racists but the majority are just too lazy to take that extra step outside of their ethnic or language comfort zone.

The +3 Duchebag Rule

Groups of three or more guys traveling together will increasingly display duchebag behavior.

  • Not making friends with other travelers.
  • Not learning anything about the culture or country they are guests of.
  • Getting obnoxiously drunk.
  • Ignoring social courtesy.
  • Generally just sitting around drinking the cheapest beer available and talking shit instead of having genuine adventures and discoveries.

Any time I see big groups of guys traveling together, I almost completely ignore them. I found this especially true of groups of American ‘dudes’ from the United States on a ‘bro-cation’ together.




It’s no secret that travelers like to drink. If you ask a traveler why they are drinking too excess so frequently they will typically misquote some platitude about having ‘no regrets’ or enjoying life when you are young… Living in Colombia and organizing a weekly nightlife party, I encountered a lot of narcotourists, which has probably slighted my perspective here.
The reality is that for all they drink, for all the white powder they put in their noses, travelers are very mediocre hedonists. They trade the lesser pleasure of night after night of intoxication for the greater pleasure of experiencing actual novelty.

Australians are the worst offender in this area, of the thousands of Australians I met traveling, very few did anything other than spend their nights intoxicated and their mornings recovering. They are not here to fuck spiders.


If there’s one big demographic group that I’ve lost the most respect for during my travels, it has to be men. Men on vacation without the regimented daily schedule of work or school quickly turn into drunk, soft, sedentary, horizontally aligned (in front of a TV or computer) creatures. The English are the worst offender here. With every chain smoking, beer swilling, movie marathon watching, pizza consuming English lad I met abroad I understood more and more why they lost their global empire. If I had to chose one word to describe men I met traveling it has to be, indecisive.


Most travelers are some variety of societal none-contributors, a small proportion of travelers actually have productive careers. The majority are either traveling on mommy and daddy’s dime, credit cards, avoiding joining the workforce and in general don’t understand that how they spend their time in their 20′s defines the career success of the rest of their lives.  A common topic of discussion amongst travelers is justifying avoiding working; they are going back to University to get a masters degree, starting a travel blog, pontificating good ideas for iPhone App startups, comparing oneself to Steve Jobs, etc .

Also: Break dancing skills of a penguin.

Also: Break dancing skills of a penguin.

I am the worst offender in this department, for letting my workaholicsm takeover and prioritizing empire building over cultural and travel experiences. Countless nights I prioritized slaving away on my computer that extra 2-3 hours instead of learning to salsa dance (I still have the salsa dancing skills of a penguin).

Abysmal Wingmanship

When it comes to dating, meeting girls, being good wingmen and generally making magic happen with the fairer sex the majority of guys you meet traveling are, to sum it up in a word, pussies. Until they have 5-6 drinks and a line of blow in them, all they do is make excuses about interacting with the opposite sex…

  • I’m not drunk enough…
  • I’m too drunk…
  • Those girls aren’t hot enough…
  • Those girls are too hot…
  • I don’t speak Spanish…
  • I have a girlfriend (back home, continents away!)…

As friendly and articulate as Dutch, German, Swiss, Austrian and Scandinavian guys are they just displayed a real lack of guts and initiative in the picking up chicks department.


While a fair proportion of girls I met traveling are genuine adventurers and lifestyle rebels A LOT were just plain sloppy and had completely lost touch with their femininity. I don’t expect girls who are traveling for months and months to bring 4 inch heels to wear out but hey would it hurt to pack a cocktail dress?

Girls traveling spend a lot of time reading, which is cool but I was really disappointed in the literary depth of the books most frequently read; the Hunger Games, 50 Shades of Grey, Game of Thrones and the Twilight series. How about reading some historical fiction about the countries you are visiting or spending a little of that downtime learning a 2nd language?

Also as someone from a fairly health conscious generation I thought it was common sense among young women that the surest way to lose your beauty and girlish figure is to drink alcohol, smoke cigarettes, not exercise and eat greasy, sugary processed foods regularly… Yet this is exactly what girls traveling do 5-7 days a week!

Clean it up ladies.

Aussie birds are the worst offenders here, if had to pick one thing that makes me NOT want to go to Australia, it would have to be the Australian girls I met traveling. Yuck.

Leave me a comment
Call me a douchebag or whatever in the comments section below.
Jonathan Roseland

About Jonathan Roseland

Jonathan is the inventor of the most clever cocktail toast ever, former participant in a bank robbery, almost died underwater twice, raconteur & smart drug dealer. He partied sober for 6 months in Medellin, Colombia, checkout his photos.