How To Avoid Looking Like A Hawaiian Tourist

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Do you like wearing Hawaiian shirts?

Do you want to wear a Hawaiian shirt without feeling like a tourist?

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Read on to learn the six golden rules to follow to NOT look like a tourist in your Hawaiian shirt.

If  a tourist is a man wearing a Hawaiian shirt with a camera around his neck, it's easy enough to avoid looking like one: change your shirt.

Of course, it’s not that simple. You may not realize it but the way you dress can easily mark yourself as a tourist in subtle, yet paradoxically glaring ways. Here are a few rules that can help you look less National Lampoon’s Vacation and a little more National Geographic.

Rule #1: Don’t follow the crowd. Nothing says “tourist” quite like a tour guide carrying a little flag on a stick leading a flock of name tags. Independent travel at least gives you a chance to be light on your feet and merge into the crowd. But there’s a flip side: without the guide and the little flag, you have to do all the work.

Rule #2: Know where you’re going. This means doing your homework before you travel. If you know which treasure to head for and which trap to avoid, you'll be fine.

If you don’t know where you’re going, at least look like you do. Street-smart New Yorkers say “look straight ahead and make like you own the place”. It’s the one confidence trick you should adhere to.
And if you want to cut to the chase and actually live like a local, be nice, make friends – job done.

Rule #3: Don’t be arrogant. You are a visitor - keep your manners in check. When you're impatient and/or demanding, it marks you out as a jerk who needs to have his or her passport revoked.

Rule #4: Learn some of the language. “Hello”, “please” and “thank you” can work wonders with locals. In Hawaii, "Aloha" goes a long way.

Rule #5: Be alert to what the locals are doing and follow their example. See how people are walking on the right of the street? See how nobody has gone topless on that Hawaiian beach? DO THE SAME.

Finally, Rule #6: Avoid those tourist cliches. T-shirts with “I [heart] Hawaii are only hearted by tourists.

Of course, these days there is a foolproof way of blending in when you travel: simply hunch over your phone, connect on Facebook, answer emails and check Twitter.

But if it really comes to that — you might be better off looking like a tourist.

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