Most/Least Tourist-Friendly Destination?

Old May 8th, 1999, 06:16 AM
  #1  
Jay Frank
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Most/Least Tourist-Friendly Destination?

Much has been written about the attitude of local populations towards tourists. I know that I'm asking for over-generalizations. I also know that the attitude and actions of the tourist plays a defining role in creating his/her experience. Given all that, I'd still like to know what you would consider to be the most and least tourist-friendly island?
 
Old May 11th, 1999, 12:42 PM
  #2  
Cheri
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One of the friendliest islands is Anguilla. Aruba is also. When we first went to Aruba I thought the merchants were nasty and stand offish. They wouldn't speak or wait on us. Once we spoke to them and asked about their merchandise they were great. I guess we just didn't understand their ways at first. <BR> <BR>I have found the nastiest people on Ile de Saintes, followed by St. Barths. Most of the French islands are rude, at least the ones we have been to they were. <BR> <BR>On any island you are going to find nice people and nasty people, just like you would here in the states or any place else. It's very hard to generalize.
 
Old May 11th, 1999, 12:42 PM
  #3  
Cheri
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One of the friendliest islands is Anguilla. Aruba is also. When we first went to Aruba I thought the merchants were nasty and stand offish. They wouldn't speak or wait on us. Once we spoke to them and asked about their merchandise they were great. I guess we just didn't understand their ways at first. <BR> <BR>I have found the nastiest people on Ile de Saintes, followed by St. Barths. Most of the French islands are rude, at least the ones we have been to they were. <BR> <BR>On any island you are going to find nice people and nasty people, just like you would here in the states or any place else. It's very hard to generalize.
 
Old May 11th, 1999, 04:17 PM
  #4  
Mike
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While it is hard to generalize: <BR> <BR>Unless you go to one of the self- contained resorts, you may want to avoid Jamacia. Of course you still would have to come and go to get inside of the "compound". Rudeness could be the least of your worries there. <BR> <BR>There is no place like Tahiti...the islands and people are the best! Even though Tahiti is a French colony, you will not experience the "attitude" once out of the capital, Papette. Bora Bora is awesome. Of course you have to pay a premium in time and money to get there, but Tahiti is what we compare everything else to. <BR> <BR>Grand Cayman is closer and cheaper and the people there are fine. Meals can be pricey, but travel and loging are pretty reasonable. <BR> <BR>Smile and laugh a lot (at yourself) when there is a language barrier... <BR>those occasions can really be memorable.
 
Old May 11th, 1999, 04:49 PM
  #5  
Lisa
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We found the friendliest people to be in Aruba. Never seemed to be any hostility toward tourists, everyone was real nice. It's also real safe. <BR> <BR>Least friendly people for us was in Jamaica. I really didn't enjoy myself there. Like someone else said above, rudeness is the least of your worries there.
 
Old May 11th, 1999, 07:39 PM
  #6  
red
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Don't go to Jamaica. Its the only place in 11 visits to the Caribbean I have ever had a problem. <BR> <BR>Iles des Saintes is charming. Make an effort to speak a little French, and the people are very nice. Yves at Maogany (clothing store www.maogany.com) even let me use his computer to email home. <BR> <BR>If you are in a big city anywhere, the people will be like urban people anywhere, i.e. Martinique, St. Martin, Guadeloupe. I love Bequia and the Grenadines. Tiny places, few people, no cities (except St. Vincent - another bustling island city - Kingstown).
 
Old May 12th, 1999, 02:29 PM
  #7  
Rose
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In defense of my favorite island, I must say that Jamaica is the friendliest island to which I've been. If you get away from the resort and interact with people, you will find many Jamaicans to be the friendliest and most welcoming people you'll meet. I've traveled a bit <BR>in the Caribbean, and after one trip to Jamaica, it's the place my husband and I <BR>choose to visit every chance we get. It <BR>feels like returning home when we get there now. Yes, you do have to be cautious, but caution should be exercised anywhere....I went on a carefree vacation to Florida and was robbed once! <BR> <BR>Most places I've visited have been friendly, but Bermuda and Aruba did not generally impress me in terms of service <BR>and genuine warmth of hospitality.
 
Old May 13th, 1999, 11:33 AM
  #8  
Brian in Atlanta
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I have to disagree about Jamaica. I have been twice, and will not return. Each time I stayed at a small guest house/hotel so I wasn't "behind the walls". While I agree that most everyone was friendly and I never felt unsafe anywhere, we were treated as suckers everywhere we went. I can handle (and expected) the constant hassling to buy everything imaginable - three firm "no thank you"'s usually sufficed - but I cannot feel good about having everyone try to swindel me during every transaction. Whether it be at a bar, restaurant, moped rental or even the grocery store, I was overcharged for all of my purchases, and if I caught it and demanded that I only pay the correct price, they would try to cheat me on the change. I guess these people are thinking that I won't notice, or if I do, who cares because I'm just a tourist. Well, because of this, I won't be a tourist again. The people who are doing these kind of things and destroying their tourism industry need to realize that tourism is Jamaica's largest industry and that they are only hurting themselves.
 
Old May 14th, 1999, 04:17 PM
  #9  
jj
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Unfortunately, I have to agree with the above comments about Jamaica. We were constantly harrassed to buy things there- and 3 firm "NO THANK YOU" did not work. We were tricked into paying gas for a previous local's car at a gas station with our rental car. I find it very sad, because Jamaica is an extremely beautiful island especially(IMHI) the eastern side-Port Antonio area.
 
Old May 15th, 1999, 03:27 PM
  #10  
jay
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<BR>I found people in Aruba. ST. Kitts, Turks and Caicos Cozamel (outside the strip of tourist stores)to be wonderful....friendly, interested in contact and attractive. <BR>Jamaica and ST. Croix were a mixed bag. <BR>Intersting question! <BR>Interesting question. <BR> <BR> <BR>
 
Old May 16th, 1999, 08:28 PM
  #11  
Janice
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As far as Jamaica is concerned, I <BR>really think it depends on where you <BR>are in Jamaica. We have been to <BR>Jamaica twice on cruises- Ocho Rios <BR>and Montego Bay. We have also <BR>visited Jamaica on a land vacation <BR>to Negril. Of the three destinations <BR>in Jamaica, Negril wins by far!! There <BR>is definitely less hassles from vendors <BR>and the people there were very <BR>friendly. I agree that the hustling is <BR>really wears you down in both <BR>Ocho Rios and Montego Bay. When <BR>you visit those two destinations, <BR>stick with tours if you want to see <BR>the sights. <BR>Janice <BR>
 
Old May 17th, 1999, 03:11 AM
  #12  
Jay Frank
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Actually, when I authored the original post, I was most interested in the "most friendly" category. The result, however, is a fair degree of concensus concerning Jamaica. I hope Jamaica tourism is getting this feedback as well. <BR>
 
Old May 17th, 1999, 03:13 AM
  #13  
Jay Frank
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By the way, where does Puerto Rico rank? <BR>
 
Old May 17th, 1999, 05:22 AM
  #14  
Nadine
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Jay, as far as responding to your question re friendly destinations, I found Aruba to be the most friendly destination I have been to in the Caribbean. You don't feel any standoffishness or tension. Arubans don't bargain either so when you go into a store, the price you see is the price you pay. It's a relatively safe island as well.
 
Old May 17th, 1999, 07:41 AM
  #15  
Roy
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Bonaire is very friendly island.
 
Old May 17th, 1999, 09:46 PM
  #16  
April
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I think nobody has mentioned Trinidad yet. That would be my choice for least friendly, followed by Jamaica. It's hard to pick the friendliest place since everywhere else I've been to seemed friendly. But after reading the above posts, I think I must go to Aruba. <BR>
 
Old May 18th, 1999, 11:46 AM
  #17  
Janet
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Just returned from a scuba trip on Grand Cayman and found people there to be extremely friendly and helpful. Wherever we went, locals referred us to good restaurants and fantastic dive locations. We took advantage of much of this advice and had an absolutely wonderful time. Seemed that everyone we met was interested in making sure we enjoyed our visit and wanted us to return again in the future to their beautiful (although expensive!) island. If you consider G. Cayman and want to avoid commercialism, traffic congestion and crowds, do as we did and stay on the East End.
 

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