Touriquette. It’s like etiquette for safaris

Posted on Fri August 12, 2016.

Touriquette. Or, What Would Miss Manners Do if a Lion Roared at Breakfast?

Look, let’s face it. An unexpected roar in one’s ear as one takes one’s first sip of one’s orange juice at breakfast could cause a change in the colour of one’s undergarments - although, of course, it’s quite unlikely that such a ghastly thing would ever occur.

Still, it’s always best to be prepared for any eventuality when one’s on tour.

Touriquette rule number 1: Be nice

The whole idea of travel is to meet other people, and see other places. If you concentrate on making your holiday about them rather than about you, a surprising thing’ll happen: you’ll come away enriched beyond any expectations.

Try it. You’ll see.

Touriquette rule number 2: Respect

Take the opportunity to learn about the people and the environments you’re visiting. Do some reading up beforehand so that you know what’s permissible, what’s considered insulting, and what’s downright dangerous. Ask Google.

We typed in ‘Etiquette on tour,’ and got 16,100,000 results in 0.35 seconds. (Amazing, isn’t it?)

Here are two posts we liked immediately:

  • Safari Safety and Etiquette: “Always ask permission before taking photographs of a person, their home or belongs / crafts; Don’t photograph governments buildings or airports; Don’t photograph Government officials or their vehicles.”
  • Safari Etiquette: “Respect the wildlife. Never tease or corner wild animals. Never attempt to attract an animal's attention. Don't imitate animal sounds, clap your hands, pound the vehicle or throw objects... Never attempt to feed wild animals. Never attempt approach any wild animal on foot. Never tease or corner wild animals.”

Touriquette rule number 3: Responsible Travel

Responsible tourism - a movement that grew out of the Cape Town Declaration of 2002 - is all about creating better places to live in, and better places to visit. But it’s also about holding the host community, the tour operator, AND the visitor responsible for their individual and collective impacts on the environment and on one another.

It’s a position we strongly uphold - and which we urge you to hold, too. 




p.s. Touriquette Tips for the Exasperated

If you’re sitting patiently at a waterhole or in a bird hide, but your neighbour’s been blabbing 'bout his stock options or his golf handicap for the last three hours, we suggest you take him gently by the hand and lead him to the closest daycare centre.

He probably just needs a feeding and a nappy change.