Do you offer assistance to tourists from other countries?

@Quiplet (255)
United States
September 10, 2009 9:28am CST
I live in a tourist area and hear foreign tongues often just while walking down the street. On occasion, I get stopped for information, or to be asked to take a picture. Sometimes we cannot communicate because of the language barrier. I think it's fun to help out and always take the time with tourists. Have you had any experience with this?
3 responses
@Lindalinda (4112)
• Canada
10 Sep 09
I think it is great when we can help out another person. I have been a tourist myself in other countries and received help from strangers. For many years I also lived in a tourist area and had the opportunity to help out people on occasion. Since I speak three languages, quite often we were able to communicate in one of the languages. For a while I volunteered my time at the train station in a mega city at the "Traveller's Aid" Counter It was really interesting and also challenging. For instance questions like where can I take a shower without renting a hotel room or how do I get to a public camp ground by public transportaion, or I l lost all my documents and money on the train required quite a bit of research but it was very satisfying if I could solve the problem and help out.
@Quiplet (255)
• United States
10 Sep 09
Wow. That's great you speak three languages. Oh oh. How to take a shower without renting a hotel room? I'd be curious to know how you answered that one.
• Canada
11 Sep 09
Not such an unusual question. For instance In Germany there are shower facilities in very large train stations. They are very clean and there is an attendant. For a fee you can get a fluffy towel and a hot shower. So, tourists who had a long flight and then came from the airport to the train station and had a layover of several hours would sometimes like such a conveniance. We don't have that here in North America, at least not to my knowledge. What I usually suggested was to get out their swimsuit and toiletries, store their luggage in the baggage claim area for a small fee. I would then give them a street map indicating the nearest public indoor swimming pool where they could go for a shower and swim for a reasonable price.
• Philippines
10 Sep 09
personally, i feel we are a "helping" culture, more so, to foreigners. i have personally seen myself in such situations where i offer help to foreigners who ask for information. most that i did was helping both the store cashier and the foreigner understand each other. sometimes, when i chance upon one foreigner having a hard time understand the saleslady, i try to help by explaining to him what the saleslady was trying to say (only in instances when i see the foreigner's eyebrows meet in confusion). filipinos are known to be hospitable and i am proud to be that way!
@Quiplet (255)
• United States
10 Sep 09
Thank Goodness for body language. I've known many Filipinos and the greater majority has been exceptionally nice and polite... especially the men. I love the Filipino culture.
@VANILLAREY (1473)
• India
10 Sep 09
I live in a city and there are tourists to be found most of the time. Especially where most of five star hotels are located. I help them whenever possible. The last person I helped giving directions was a man from England. Helped him with traveling in the local train.
@Quiplet (255)
• United States
10 Sep 09
There's not a lot of trains around this location, but always a lot to do for tourists (Virginia). There are a lot of summer workers from foreign lands, mostly students. Our city has a program to invite foreign students into homes for a reasonable rate. It's a great way to learn a new language.