There are common mistakes one quickly learn not to do abroad, like driving on the right side in the UK. Please don’t even try it. But for some other mistakes, a quick reminder could be great!
1-Not having insurance. If some problem should occur to you abroad and you don’t have any insurance, medical or other costs can quickly add up… Always have insurance.
2-Not getting acquainted with tips’ policy! In some countries, tips are not usual. But in others, it is felt as mandatory! Get information about a country’s tips’ policy before going!
3-Behave like an arrogant tourist. Don’t think your country or customs are better than the local ones. They are just different, try to see it with an open-mind!
4-Not be conscious of the way you must address someone. Should you be formal or not? Try to get information about that before your arrival too! You can offend someone acting in a way which is appropriate in your home country.
5-Not trying to speak the local language. Don’t assume people will speak your language or English (if this is not your native language). Try to speak their language, at least for the basics like “hello”, “thank you”…
6-Not being respectful of laws. Get information before doing anything you are not sure is legal. You wouldn’t want to end up in some creepy jail, would you? So be careful!
7-Going abroad with misconceptions. Try not have preconceived ideas, to be open minded and open to discussion. Even if someone tells you a place is not worth to see, go and make your opinion. Things are subjective!
8-Show off. Try to wear casual, not “look-at-me-I’m-a-foreigner” clothes, avoid to expose your properties of values like camera and jewellery. When there are many tourists, there are likely pickpockets too!
9-Going abroad without getting first hand information. Speak with someone who has already visited or lived in the country, check information about the country’s habits on various (not just one) website… For example, you can visit a website from worlwide expatriates ! Multiply your sources of information!
10-Finally, don’t forget that a big smile and a sincere apology can resolve many problems and misunderstandings. When you’ll think of that back home, you will most likely laugh about it and convert it into a funny memory!