My Top 5 Travel Pet Peeves

As part of the Travelling Brown Girls Blog Carnival, I wanted to take the opportunity to share my top travel pet peeves.

Travelling is rarely a completely stress-free affair – below are my top five peeves.

Travel and a delayed flight

It’s never nice to be at the departure lounge, keen to get on board for your flight before a voice over the tannoy announces that there is a delay.

I’ve encountered:

  • a volcanic ash-cloud from Iceland – we were supposed to be en-route to Dublin) when this happened 😦 – the whole trip had to be cancelled and rearranged.
  • miscalculation of fuel when returning from Morocco – the flight departed and had to land mid-journey to refuel.
  • a power fault on the plane from Jamaica resulting in no air ventilation. Having already boarded, all passengers had to be removed and shuttled back to the departure lounge for a three hour wait with no communication during the wait. Hence angry and frustrated passengers and a lot of mosquito bites in the process. I managed to later get a flight refund.
  • the best of them all, simply that there is no reason for the delay other than that there is a hold-up. Big inconvenience and a certain annoyance to all.

Travellers that don’t attempt to learn some of the local language

I have always considered travel to be something that can develop and broaden most, if not all minds. So, embrace the chance to learn some of the language and a bit about the people of the land. Even simple greetings such as ‘hello’ and ‘goodbye’ can make all the difference to the reception that you will receive from local people. Nobody expects you to be fluent (although that’s great too!). Just try. 🙂

Try the local food – it’s a reflection of the country and its people

Certain blog posts on the ‘Ad-lib Traveller’ may have given away the fact that I am a foodie. A proud one at that. I love food and enjoying new ingredients that can be taken from destinations and incorporated to my own cooking. With my partner being an ex-chef, we tend to explore the foodie aspect of the all places that we visit with two of our favourites (so far) being in Thailand and Marrakech.

Mosquitoes (and any other biting insects)

No matter the country or the brand of mosquito spray, I always, absolutely always get bitten. I try covering up during the evenings, sleeping with a mosquito net over the bed, cooling the room down with the A/C (for a few minutes only) as much as possible with little to no joy. As my mother says, “the blood must be sweet”!

Leaving to return home

After a fantastic holiday building lots of fun and exciting memories, it is always a sad time to have to leave.  I love my home and being in the UK but travel really does leave me wanting more each and every time.

That just about completes my list, let’s hope that the next trip is hassle free!

Have you encountered any experiences that have left you with a ‘pet peeve’ regarding travel?

22 thoughts on “My Top 5 Travel Pet Peeves”

  1. The local language pet peeve is a popular one! I recently wrote a review of a hotel that had been given poor reviews because the staff “didn’t speak english”. I basically said “if you want to be at a hotel where the entire staff speaks english, DON’T GO TO MEXICO!”. I received some negative comments on my review – but not even attempting to say “hello” in the local language is very rude. IMO..

    Great read!


    1. Pleased that you enjoyed the post. It’s important that travellers realise that not everybody speaks English and at least attempt to learn some local phrases. It has always been appreciated whenever I have attempted to speak the language and whilst my pronounciation may be incorrect, it can be a conversation starter in itself to get help directly from locals who are often happy that you have tried. Thanks for reading, comments are always appreciated 🙂


  2. Women (it is mainly women) who don’t respect local customs and dress modestly. I don’t mean the full head-to-toe thing, but going around with plunging necklines, bare shoulders, tiny shorts is ridiculous. I’m a woman, and believe that women are NEVER responsible for an assault. But complaining that local men gawp at you is just ignorant, when local women remain covered.


    1. It is always important to adhere to local custom/religion. This is a key area that I also research when travelling. Some countries have a definite dress code, failing to follow it is disrespectful to the people and their culture.


  3. YES!!! I completely overlooked the importance of learning some key phrases in the mother tongue of your destination. Thank you for that reminder! I would never consider traveling without at least knowing how to say “hello”, “please” and “thank you”. Great


  4. Good post! Leaving to return home isn’t a pet peeve of mine necessarily because it’s a double edged sword: I’m rarely ready to go home, but there’s no place like it! =)


  5. Wowzers! You sure have some luck when it comes to delayed flights! I can remember a flight delay when I went to the Blacks in Government conference. It was a flight full of black women and the pilot told us that the plane was too heavy for take – off! I can just imagine the luggage that some people had packed for that week long trip!!

    I particularly enjoy traveling and eating the weird food that have your friends making the craziest expressions! Turtle soup, anyone?!? 🙂


  6. Number 5 is the absolute worst. There are a few places that I’ve actually teared up a day or two before having to leave. I mean I REEEEAAALLLLYY didn’t want to go home. But alas, it all has to end eventually and is good motivation to get the next trip planned and underway!


  7. Not bothering to learn a few words in the language and not respecting the local dress customs are on my top five list. You pay all of this money, took the time off work and you can’t be bother to learn how to say hello and thank you in the local language? Do you live under a rock away from Google? Sheesh! Yes, those two are high on my travel pet peeves list.


  8. Yeah. I think many native English speakers are the worst offenders of not learning a local language. I learned a few words of Turkish while in Turkey, and I swear local folks love it when I said a few words. Apparently, I had a great Turkish accent. I really do think we got better service and so many smiles.


  9. Semi-related (ok, maybe not at all) to #2 and #3, my MAJOR travel pet peeve, is when tour guides (whether private or group), assume that I (or any traveler for that matter) only want to hit the touristy spots, shop at the souvenir stores catered to tourists, and eat familiar non-local food. I’ve come across them quite a bit, and they act surprised when I asked them to take me “off the beaten path” or to their fave street food cart.


  10. I love your blog colours , your topics and originality. I am from Trinidad & Tobago and just starting my website. It was a pleasure reading your blog and I hope you can stop by and see mines it’s called



  11. I can overlook the language somewhat. My biggest pet peeve is definitely people who think they must find the same everything — food, customs, etc., they would at home. My thinking is, if you want what you already have, there’s no point traveling. Stay home!


  12. I can totally relate to the mosquitos, everywhere I go! Even if there are the same number of bugs back home, I always get bitten overseas. I have a theory that foreigners with exotic blood get bitten more so because our blood is a new and exciting flavour to them.


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