KyivPost

Why do ‘Russian’ tourists behave so badly abroad?

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Feb. 11, 2009, 7:29 p.m. | Op-ed — by Alina Rudya

Alina Rudya

Kyiv Post

Tourists from former U.S.S.R. are quite easy to spot abroad Stereotypes are discriminatory, but they also exist for reasons. So, I apologize in advance to people whose feelings are hurt by this column. But I would also be happy if some people changed their behavior after reading my take about tourist stereotypes.

Think American tourist and many would answer: loud, overweight, doesn’t speak any language other than English and totally ignorant, excluding information that he or she picked up in a Lonely Planet guide.

Think Japanese tourist and many would say: loaded with the latest models of the most expensive photographic equipment to take smiling pictures everywhere; almost always travels in large groups.

But the most controversial, hated, mocked and avoided type of tourist is a “Russian” tourist. Important notice: when I say “Russian,” I mean all Slavic post-Soviets. Probably one of these nations does more than the others in perpetuating the negative image abroad, but I will generalize here. Unfortunately as it is, for most Europeans as well as for the rest of the world, Ukrainians, Belarusians and even Moldovans are still “Russians” when they go abroad.

This tourist type is quite young. But, since the collapse of the Soviet Union and the fall of the so-called Iron Curtain, more post-Soviets go abroad for holidays. And, regrettably, they behave like bulls in a china shop.

So how does a Russian tourist behave? And why do Russians, Ukrainians and Belarusians keep fueling bad images of their countries by behaving inappropriately abroad?

The Russian tourist is arrogant. If you are a foreigner and have lived in Russia or Ukraine for awhile, you probably noticed that people never say “sorry” when they step on your foot. They also never apologize when they push you on the street or in public transport. You are lucky if you are not yelled at instead. This attitude doesn’t change when these people go abroad either.

After you have lived in the country for some time, you get used to its inhabitants, their mentality and their attitude. But when you go abroad and have a chance to compare, that’s when you start to think about why some people are nice and friendly and others are grumpy and arrogant. That’s what happened to me. Until I left Ukraine I thought that arrogance was the norm. But when I started traveling abroad, I understood that I was wrong.

One more feature of Russians is eternal discontent. You can recognize a Russian tourist everywhere by the bored and unsatisfied expression. I remember going to the Sistine Chapel in the Vatican. I was impressed by its beauty, but my mood was spoiled when I heard: “Oh man, this is just so lame, let’s go somewhere else!” with a distinct Moscow accent. Others I met in Rome were talking about the small room they had in a hotel, the lousy Italian food that spoiled their digestion and the awful heat.

I understand that conditions may not always be the best. But if you cannot change the conditions – change your attitude. That’s what my Spanish friends say. Unfortunately, that’s not what a Russian tourist does. In Finland, the sauna is too cold; in Rome, the pizza is too hot. Paris is not romantic enough. In Oslo, prices are too high and the ocean is not as blue as on Bali. Another saying that comes to mind is: “If a person is not satisfied with what they have, they won’t be satisfied with whatever they desire.”

Another thing comes to mind that is very specific to post-Soviets abroad: not obeying the rules. Probably you’ve heard our saying: “Don’t go to a foreign monastery with your own set of rules.” Unfortunately, Russians do and their set of rules is no rules at all.

Russians are easy to spot in the plane. When the plane lands, the flight attendants ask you to stay seated and keep your mobile phones off until the seat belts signs are off. But there are those who unfasten their belts, jump up and yell into their mobile phones just after the landing gear hits the ground. Those are usually Russians – behaving as if they could jump out of the windows before the plane even stops.

Queues are also good places to spot the Russian tourists. I went skiing in Austria this year. The Russians were the only ones among many nationls who went around the whole line and pushed through. Why is that? I don’t know. I wish they were as disobedient with their governments as they are with people.

I saw a sign in Russian at a foreign spa, reading: “Dear guests! Entrance to the gym is free. But please, go one by one!” It was the only sign in Russian in the whole resort.

So, to paraphrase George Orwell’s famous quote: “All people are equal, but some (think that they) are more equal than others.” This is why they spit where it says “don’t spit,” smoke where it is forbidden and pee where no toilet exists.

All mentioned above is aggravated by the drinking problem many Russians have. There are actually restaurants in Europe that shun the Russian tourists just because they are afraid of losing the rest of their clientele. And it’s not about how much they drink - it’s about the tradition of drinking. Breaking a window and starting a fight is normal after a bottle of vodka in some places. But not in civilized ones. Unfortunately, the answer a manager gets from a drunken Russian tourist who has been asked to leave is cursing. I was a witness to such a conversation once and sorry that I was able to understand.

A wealthy family from Moscow, friends of mine, wanted to go to Courchevel, a fashionable French ski resort where the richest and best go. When they called to book a hotel, the manager refused to give them a room when he realized they are from Russia. “Unfortunately we had a really bad experience with the Russians and we have to keep our hotel’s image on certain level, so we regret…” and so on.

It escapes me why the Russian tourists behave the way they do. Maybe it is the inferiority complex still present in most post-Soviets, or jealousy of a better life, which most of our people didn’t have for a long time. Even though I am a part of this culture I still don’t understand what our problem is.

Whatever the reasons, bad behavior triggers proportional responses. I don’t want to be treated badly or skeptically because I’m from Ukraine. It’s easy to spoil your image, but hard to win back respect. But until some people understand that being happy and behaving nicely is actually good for you, I will suffer along with others who don’t embody the traditional Russian tourist stereotype.

One last example: How do kids react to a newcomer who beats them, yells at them or breaks their toys? They avoid him or her, or they are afraid. The same is with us. If we want to be part of the European community, if we want to be civilized and respected, we have to behave well when we are abroad. Unfortunately, some people are too arrogant to say “sorry” and it’s totally beneath them to stand in line. Sometimes it’s good not to be part of the crowd. But not in this case.

Alina Rudya is a staff writer and photographer for the Kyiv Post.
The Kyiv Post is hosting comments to foster lively debate. Criticism is fine, but stick to the issues. Comments that include profanity or personal attacks will be removed from the site. If you think that a posted comment violates these standards, please flag it and alert us. We will take steps to block violators.
Anonymous Feb. 11, 2009, 8:14 p.m.    

I was recently at the New York Times-sponsored Travel Show held in NYC every year. Ukraine had a booth for the first time. We were right across from our Russian counterparts who did not seem to get much attention from the show’s visitors. As I was explained by a fellow American traveler, “Russians are not the nicest people.” What is shocking is that those tourist representatives were supposed to promote travelling to their native country, instead of giving attitudes to potential visitors!

Unfortunately, Ukrainians and Moldovans do get “bundled up” with our “friendly” neighbors. I personality get that attitudes from many Americans and foreigners living in NYC. However, I would disagree that Moldovans or Ukrainians come close to Russians in their negative attitudes and superior treatment of others. I have quite a few friends from these two countries, including my native Ukraine. All of us are living abroad, thus have modified our behavior to adjust to the rules of the host country. W

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 7:09 a.m.    

As a CDN who has lived in both Kyiv and Moskva and travelled throughout both countries, I did not find much difference in attitude between Ukrainians and Russians. Some were totally obnoxious, others were very friendly. Some hated foreigners, others were very welcoming. Some were closed and afraid, others were open and curious. Among those who I have encountered as immigrants to Canada, exactly the same. Some are so thankful and happy to be here and others complain about everything, nothing is good enough. However you think and feel inwardly will always get expressed outwardly, no matter where you go to visit or live. It is sad that so many people from those countries are still so angry within, but maybe if we had lived through 70 years of fear, control, and isolation, we would also be angry and miserable. It will probably take at least one generation to adapt. I truly feel sorry for them as they have to live with themselves.

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 3:41 p.m.    

Very funny, Ukrainian/Russian girl talking about bad Russian tourists...While I would agree with the conclusions of the author I do not see a reason in this article in English speaking newspaper except: (i) author trying to integrate with English community at the expense of readers (ii) author raising self-esteem (iii) sign from KP and Slavic states are no longer a good place to leave - not a good farewell Kyivpost!

Working in Kyivpost, speaking English and may be having foreign boyfriend does not mean you are an Anglo-Saxon, Alina.

Also it is interesting to find what is the motive of writing this article. Yeah, we know US said Ukraine needs 20+ years to be in NATO and EU doors are closed. But your newspaper is still in Ukraine so there is not sence to irritate people here by your articles. The article is written as God's message to us mortals...who are you to write this?

Marry your boyfriend ang go abroad and prey that he does not kick you out as you get older.

Reader

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 9:07 p.m.    

You are mean, rude and arrogant person, just like Alina described you.

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Anonymous Feb. 11, 2009, 8:34 p.m.    

I've noted in my psychology practice that the nastiest, most self-nourishing sorts of depression are those in narcissists who don't get all they think they deserve. True for abusive partners, true for the Russian tourists as Alina described, and for the usual American "liberal." Maybe a slug of Prozac (an antidepressant) in vodka or Risperdal (an antipsychotic that makes people "nicer") in shower heads would improve a lot of manners...

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Anonymous Feb. 11, 2009, 9:28 p.m.    

Risperdal ? that is the German name of Risperdone.

How come ? German ?

strange...

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Anonymous Feb. 11, 2009, 10:21 p.m.    

In the USA and Canada, "Risperdal" is the brand-name or trade-name for the drug whose generic name is "risperidone," an antipsychotic.

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Anonymous Feb. 11, 2009, 10:35 p.m.    

Oh - I didn t know trhat

thank you

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Anonymous Feb. 11, 2009, 10:39 p.m.    

I thought Risperdal is the German brand name and Risperidone the American

But you are the expert

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Anonymous Feb. 11, 2009, 9:21 p.m.    

I think new found wealth has also something to do with it. In "Russia" if you have a BMW (or any public display of wealth) people get the idea that they are better then the general population and the general population is usually affraid of the "BMW" owners because they are connected and messing with them will be a bad idea since the "BMW" guy has connections and not only he will beat you up but the cops wont do anything about it. So the general population in a way sucks up the abuse dished out by the "BMW" guy which in turn enables the "BWM" guy to be even a bigger dickhead.

Had my own exprerince with this in a bar here in Canada, except here these asswipes will go to jail and no 20 dollar bribe will get them off.

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Anonymous Feb. 11, 2009, 9:28 p.m.    

Part of the “Russian” tourist phenomenon is a function of that group’s interaction with another stereotype: the “snooty” European service worker - who cannot help but ostentatiously pass judgement on one’s taste or tawdriness even as they pass one sugar for one’s cafe au lait. To those places where tourism is not merely an incidental sector of the economy, “Russian” tourists are the most galling reminder that their cities are in a sense vacant already - and no longer produce geniuses of art and culture. These places have become parodies of their former selves - and a “Russian” tourist with too much money in his pockets, a cell phone to his ear, a girlfriend dressed in “Lagerfeld meets Lolita” and supremely uninterested in paying homage to a few thousand years of civilization is a stark reminder of just how low and how far from the proverbial apple tree they’ve fallen.

Blame globalization: a “Russian” tourist is the unhappy merger of US consumerism with an EU superiority complex.

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Anonymous Feb. 11, 2009, 10:21 p.m.    

i think that the ukrainian education ministry should add a subject 'Moral' into the education system , so that the new generation can be brought up with a better perspective and will later on change my view on the Slavic people....

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Anonymous Feb. 11, 2009, 10:21 p.m.    

i think that the ukrainian education ministry should add a subject 'Moral' into the education system , so that the new generation can be brought up with a better perspective and will later on change my view on the Slavic people....

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Anonymous Feb. 11, 2009, 11:07 p.m.    

Instead of adding such a subject, the Ukrainian Governemnt should financial support Ukrainian students to study abroad with a stipulation to come back to Ukraine and work/live there. If it is a massive move, Ukraine's mentality of passivism and crudness will slowly disappear.

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 9:05 p.m.    

Ha-ha-ha... this is really funny... Do you know how many Ukrainians have studied abroad and how many of them have come back so far? You would be surprised. Speaking of crudness, some of the most sensitive and sensible people I met in my life were either Russian or Ukrainian. Pessmism is understandable in the country which is in such a bad economic shape and where many educated people hardly make 200-300$ a month. It should be less understandable is a contry as the US or Canada, where about 20% of the population is depressed. Your "insights" are superficial.

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Anonymous Feb. 11, 2009, 11:21 p.m.    

I have been working in hospitality industry for seven years now and I ask myself the same question. Why Russian behave so badly as tourists. No exception, Russians who live in Russia or those ones who reside in abroad. Russians from USA and Canada are the worst.

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Anonymous Feb. 11, 2009, 11:22 p.m.    

i am a foreign student studying in Ukraine for almost 7 years, I am pleased to say goodbye to this country after suffering for so long.....

A simple request for a application can take several trips to the same office and waiting for hours each time to be see........

no clean toilets even the mcdonalds'

rude flight attendents

rude shop sellers.......they acting like they expecting u to beg them to buy their stuffs most of the time, if u do not have the exact change, they'll scold u back instead...never bothered to say 'sorry we do not have changes or go out and change some small changes back to the shop so that the business can run better' the worst customer service ever in this world...I've been around the world and this is the only culture that i am totally sorry for....and you know what the russian said when i complaint this to them? they will not feel sorry, but replied instantly, SO WHAT?

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Anonymous Feb. 11, 2009, 11:32 p.m.    

they think foreigners are stupid, they never treated foreigners nicely. they think they are the best in the world. they laugh at you, and scolded you if u do not speak proper russian...they never q up to buy stuffs, for any lines u may think of..airport, buses etc...the way they dress are totally outdated, and exaggerating, they gross part is that they clapped their hands when the plane touched down the runaway..yea, i never heard a russian say sorry to me in 7 years....i don have a local friends at all for 7 years i've been staying here...they think learning english is stupid, but i tried my best to communicate with them in russian. it's like 50 years back of where i from...they act like barbarian, uncivillized people..to be honest, i feel pitty and sorry for them...good luck to ukraine, to russian...

the funny thing is that Ukraine wanting to join EU..i guess, they still have another 100 years to improve themselves, look at EU, ever been there? and look at yourself.

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Anonymous Feb. 11, 2009, 11:48 p.m.    

i think Ukraine needds to wait another 50 to 100 years to apply for EU status, russian never realized what is going on in the world, nobody in this post telling what is truly happening in daily life of russian culture, what are you afraid of? i am telling the truth...raise your voice, speak up. they do not have self concious at all....not only in ukraine, russia, uzbek, all soviet countries, the people are the same...english is not my first language, but i try to speak, nor russian....but russian never had the idea how important it is to learn an international language...so far, whenever a russian approached me in other country and asking for help, i always say, yes i understand russian, but i do not want to help you... you see, this is what russian asking for...if a foreigner stucked or having problem, nobody would help, police just ignore, only know how to ask for bribe...so ask yourself, entering EU or entering hell...Russians...you choose yourself

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 12:06 a.m.    

o author of this post Ms Alina Rudya, i am not trying to be offensive, but i am just telling the fact, and you said that you still do not understand why people are hating russian people, i think my experiences have answered u partly...look at the gas dispute, look at the standard of living over here comparing to other countries...i've been to poor country, but the people never acted that way like russian do.....and i'm happy that you speak up your thoughts about your own people, this is a really serious matter if ukraine wants to enter EU...but i know it won't be happening for at least another 30 years...be realistic, look at the government, where the money goes...the gas dispute the stability of politics, look at yourself...russian just never feel ashamed of themselves..never humble....

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 6:38 a.m.    

Bobo,

If its so bad over there, may I ask why you stuck around for seven years? Just curious.

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Anonymous Feb. 11, 2009, 11:25 p.m.    

Well, at least they are good on tip. They are rude no manner

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Anonymous Feb. 11, 2009, 11:38 p.m.    

Oh, come now, comrades! I spent time in the Ukraine. And Mother Russia. This is nothing that vodka can't cure!

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Anonymous Feb. 11, 2009, 11:49 p.m.    

yea, vodka...drink until your liver cirrhosis....that';s what russian good for...prostitution, sex...HIV......

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Anonymous Feb. 11, 2009, 11:54 p.m.    

now i think i understand where is all this come from...VODKA...it induces encephalopathy which causes russians' brain damage...no wonder they have been acting like this ..i think that time will change nothing...congratz comrades

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Anonymous Feb. 11, 2009, 11:48 p.m.    

I can't speak about any Russian behavior issues, but I have been to Kyiv and Ukraine about 10 times. I love the city, the country and the people. I remember going to Belarus twice. I rarely saw people smile, but in Ukraine I do and I find the people quite friendly. Since becoming interested in Ukraine since the Orange Revolution, I've lost all desire to visit Russia. By the way, I am an American, not overweight, nor loud.

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Anonymous Feb. 11, 2009, 11:55 p.m.    

orange revolution is a failure

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Anonymous Feb. 11, 2009, 11:58 p.m.    

From my experience Ukrainians in general are nice people, I think the author should not mix Ukraine and Russia because of the common soviet past. More and more both nations tend to drift apart and to the rest of the world or at least to people with some education, they both Russia and Ukraine are not the same. I also think that not all Russians should be thrown in the same bag. It is shame that a bunch of uneducated travelers (most of them people who became rich very quick) travel with an arrogant attitude and leave a bad impression of their country abroad.

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 1:10 a.m.    

the fact that ukrainians and russians are put together in the same context kinda disturbs me...as I have been studying in ukraine fr the past 6 years...the ugly part or so its called is to blamed on the russians..ukrainians are much friendlier and hospitable...well come to think of it this is the russian way of life n so it'll be fr the future years..even the russians believe that their best ever invention was the vodka...even then its only half true...bt..isn't this the true russian way we all know about..

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 1:54 a.m.    

I lived for 5 years in Kiev. I still don't see any difference in the behaviour of Russians and Ukrainians abroad - actually it's quite funny-they try so hard to show how they are better than everybody else. Never happy with where they are or what they are doing. And let's admit it, they are NEVER polite or friendly unless you are actually a personal acquaintance. Sad.

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 1:31 a.m.    

From my experience, Ukrainians are like rubbish. No manners, uneducated trash.. They wouldn't use thier brain to think. Just like to act as big bully to bully other nation people. Even the goverment of this country are corrupted.. No money no talk.. I even saw a european traveler that been strip off on the street with unknown reason.. How come this country so bad to treat other people.. do they know without those traveler, the economy this country already bankrupt..Shame of them!!!!

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 1:58 a.m.    

I have been to Russia and the Ukraine many times. It seems to me that the people of the Ukraine are more well behaved. You don't see drunks in the street in the Ukraine like you do in Russia.

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Anonymous April 16, 2009, 1:34 p.m.    

looks like you havent been on the streets of ukraine past 9am

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 4:41 a.m.    

I didn't care for this article. It seemed stereotypical and a little mean spirited. It lacked any real insight into Russian culture and did nothing to enlighten the reader. It was a bit like the conversation you hear in a bar when two guys start saying things like "You know what I hate about the Russians?" In America we call this kind of thing talking trash. It would have been a much nicer article if the author had discussed the differences in culture. The Italian people prefer to converse over food while the French socialize while smoking. something like that.

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 6:37 a.m.    

I am a Russian living in the USA. At least twice a year I go to the Mediterranian cruising with my Russian friends (living in Russia). We usually buy 12-14 days cruises on the good and expensive cruise lines. I've never met a Russian on a cruise who was in any way different from the rest of the guests.

But last October my friends and I decided to stay in Rome for a week. I paid for my hotel in Florida, they were forced to order their hotel in Russia. They paid TWICE what I was charged.

Often that is the reason of their complains - they are habitually cheated by the unscrupulous travel agents. They are sold two star hotel room and charged for four stars, they are promised Smorgasbord breakfast, but they are served the Continental ones, and the list goes on and on... I saw it in Israel, in Turkey, and throughout Europe. Who can blame them?!

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Anonymous Feb. 16, 2009, 3:58 p.m.    

So you admit that the aricle is absolutely true, that your friends acted in an uncivlized and barbaric manner... but because your friends were the victims of a zhulik travel agent, it suddenly justifies their actions...please, this is the very pugilistic village mentality and inverse justification thinking that CAUSES such uncivilized behavior. The cliche is; "two wrongs don't make a right" and if you continue to think it is okay, you're going to continue to get stuck in two star hotels because they are the only ones who will let rude, drunken and unruly patrons like you and your friends stay there.

If you live in the US, then at least demonstrate some acquired common sense and stop trying to excuse your friends' bad behavior and lack of manners of any level on someone else being a thief. If I go back to Moscow and the travel agent cheats me, I guess its okay if I burn my hotel to the ground, or at least destroy everything in it, because I am unhappy ...good logic, very civilized.

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 8:09 a.m.    

When we mention the word 'barbarian', we consider men sitting around in a group feasting on the daily hunt; maybe a good boar or bear. However the context here in USSR and former USSR countries have noticed a shortage of Barbarian MEN and an increase of BARBARIAN HAGS due to excessive poaching of Barbarian men! These groups of women sit around and feast upon THE BARBARIAN MEN and on the special menu of delicacies are Foreigners and the BEST course yet are FOREIGN STUDENTS!

I had a good life changing experience in one of the public transports. I was sitting in the bus when I saw an old wobbly lady get onto the bus. I offered my seat to her when suddenly a mid-aged woman pushed her way and took the seat which I offered. The old woman reprimanded her for not having the courtesy to at least thank me. Then it began. The mid-aged woman in her insolence starts shouting back at her and turned to me and said "I will show you my thanks. Take your seat I don't need it!"

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 2:52 p.m.    

yea, i've met this kind of situation a lot of times in ukraine....we foreigner are offering seats for the local elderly..but the local youngsters don't...not all russian or ukrainian, but for us, we 100% are okay by offering the seat, but it doesn't happen over here 100%..maybe 30% of the people would....

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 9:16 a.m.    

Many of My British Freinds tell me how they Went on Holiday To Turkey and the Red Sea Resorts in Egypt and they had to put up with Ignorant Russians who Never Queue for Anything.

Also 1 in every 200 Slavic People have Mongol DNA in Them!!!!!!!!

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 9:58 a.m.    

THis article is correct. I have lived in Ukraine for a long time now carrying out company business etc. Although there are many good people here, generally Ukrainians and Russian are pigs. I'm sorry but it is true. I think we all miss the piont here a bit. I came to the conclusiosn a long time ago, but I believe it has to do with the loss of the middle and higher classes during the Revolutionary period and the Soviet period. Without them a low level of nature and behaviour was wanted, if not idolised. Now step forward in time and some of these same people gained money almost from nothing, usually stealing.....THen they go on holiday in the West. ..........So what other behaviour do you expect!! I don't wish any bad on anyone, but this time I say it is good that the so called elites in these states find themselves bankrupt. Might teach then a few lessons....But on the other hand my experiences here tell me otherwise...they won't learn.

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 2:54 p.m.    

they won't learn, and yet cocky enough to yell at you SO WHAT

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 9:59 a.m.    

An informative article must argue both sides of a story- FAIRLY. While it is intirely true that Slavik Tourists have a distinctively character as described in your article, is it not also true that some other aspects of the slavik culture is LOVED abroad?? Lots of Tourists in Ukrainian bars love the attitude of the Slavik people when they are out having fan. Slavik are SPONTANEOUS, and will not shy away from telling you exactly what they think, as opposed to hidding it in your heart.

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 12:16 p.m.    

I I I do appreciate the author’s sense of humor rather dry and lambent and of course for the time spent to express I hope his own opinion regarding the above mentioned BUT. I will base my comments on my own experience , I have been to Spain, Italy, Austria, GB, Belgium, France and:

In 1997 I went to Spain where I spent more than 1 month and I found out that bulk part of the city I stayed in was not experienced in geography especially with the difference between Russia and Ukraine. So I can partly agree with the author’s point of view that for the foreigners we were all the same – Russians. But It was 12 years ago and we have to take into account that on that date Ukraine was only 6 years old. But that is not the answer or justification it is a very lame excuse. That was not our fault not to be recognized, that was not our problem that people didn’t know what Ukraine is! But today I may say that it is very simple to differ Ukrainian from Russian or representative from any CIS country.

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 12:17 p.m.    

We are different and at the same time we are very similar. Author pays attention to the problem of inaccurate, inappropriate, insufferable behavior of the tourists from Russia, Ukraine and as a result for example not get the access into hotel. To my mind these are only rumors mmmmm unconfirmed rumors. During my staying in any country I have mentioned above I had no problems with booking, entering any restaurant I wanted or to be discriminated. I can agree that our behavior differs from the behavior of any other nation BUT we are all DIFFERENT and that is the case. Regarding the bottle of vodka, windows and bla bla bla…. Dear Author please make a survey of how Englishmen like to “relax” and you will find out that our behavior is not the worst. By the way I didn’t notice any quarrels or fights of our’s abroad that can spoil our reputation. I can cite as and example many facts but the main idea that we do not behave in a way to spoil our reputation on the national level ( I do not mean o

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 12:17 p.m.    

This article had touched me deeply. I live currently in Berlin and travel oft to Poland, so from time to time I take notice of the tourists coming from different countries. And I must say that the attitude expressed in this article is absolutely wrong. I was staying once with my husband in a hotel in Poland and we went down to have a dinner in a restraunt making uns afterwards comfortable in a lobby to have a drink and chatter a little bit. Then came a group of tourists from Germany. They were obviously having a very nice time, in a perfect mood, screaming, guffawing. The whole group stationed itself without taking any notice of uns, almost edging us out of the room. And all this because they thought we were the Poles, the art of undermen for them. And on the streets of the capital - Berlin, one can see the tourists which are completely fixed on themselves violating all the set of rules of coooperative go-together. And these tourist come from all over the world.

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 1:18 p.m.    

you are a german yourself

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 12:17 p.m.    

( I do not mean our politicians). And to my mind Articles topic is very old and exhausted and I keep my fingers crossed you not to write a such articles like this one as it is not informative and well planed.

MMMMM By the please make a research how do foreigners like to spend their time here in Ukraine? For example those who’s religious persuasions prohibit them to act in the way they relax in our country.

Kind regards

ME

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 12:23 p.m.    

I still believe it depends mostly on the individual from any country..good behavior is taught from childhood not acquired during holiday travel.. some minor things i observed was once at the Red sea resort in Egypt i was amazed at the Russians who bought the inclusive package of all you can eat or drink but they would wait 30 minutes to get an ounce of beer on the beach when you could buy a large bottle of premium beer for a dollar. But behavior was civil.. when the aircraft lands many Russians still think its OK to get up once the wheels touch the ground... and the all you can eat buffets people will still fill their pockets will food they will eat later which is not allowed but most people act pretty civilized otherwise... Ukrainians are generally more happy, will smile more often.. but it really depends on the person..every country has belligerent people..

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 12:31 p.m.    

We as a nation have to be proud of ourselves. And we have to know how to defend ourselves agaist spottery and despisal abroad because it is hard enough to deal with the prejudice of the natives in a foreign country which we are often contronted with. UNfortunately we have to bear the poor picture of our country that was created by our uncouth politicians. I believe that such articles only incite into the matter, making it even worse. Let us give the people belonging to other cultures no opportunity to humiliate us when we show that we are glad and ready to be humiliated in our self appraisal. Let us take ourselves so much as we are. The americans are not besser when abroad. This is something psychological - crossing the geographical boundaries one enters the space that is free from all obligations. One is not to follow the established rules but to explore the new possibilities and exercise the supressed drives.

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 12:45 p.m.    

When someone ist denied a room in a hotel on account of his/her coming from Russland/Ukraine, that means a pure discrimination - court case to be legaly persecuted and punished. THis is not something, as the author of the article tries to display, perfectly natural. The employee had to be fired for giving such answers or the activity permit should be withdrawed for this hotel.

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 1:53 p.m.    

Typical, Ukrainians writing here are in denial of their low standards. Yes, it is always the Russians who get up in the plane before it is parked...Why, simply because they can. No different to bribing officials to get what they want in business...Why, because they can. Foreigners are free to say what they want about former original Soviet people. If the Ukrainians and Russians don't like it...too bad. Just like the freindly welcome Ukrainians give to foreigners when here..yeh right. In the West taking a propective employee to lunch or providing a cocktail party for a group of prostective employees, is often a way that managers identify bad manners. I gave up on using this method in Ukraine some time ago, as any foreigner sitting at a table watching most Ukrainians eat food would testify to. Stop living in denial Ukrainians, and that means on many things in your state, remember the politicians are also Ukrainians!, .and please raise your standards when visiting other countries.

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 1:57 p.m.    

...as it took a lot to develop those countries into the nice places that they are. Of course Ukrainians would not know anything about developing a good country........

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 1:36 p.m.    

Very, very true, except that it also holds true for middle-aged and elderly 'Russians' - dumb, impolite, arrogant, and always grumpy, even towards each other, by the looks of it. The worst type of tourist we get around here, and with all the Brits and Yanks we have to endure, that's saying something!

But what's even more puzzling: I happen to know a fair number of Ukrainians, Lithuanians and (actual) Russians that live here permanently, and these are without exception the kindest and heartiest people you could ever hope to meet. Always generous and welcoming, and very well informed on just about any subject.

So whatever the reasons, it's not in your genes to be rude and ignorant. The drinking water perhaps?

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 2:55 p.m.    

Congratulations! This must the most comments received for an article.

I am a Brit. I avoid going to locations were young Brits go - usually totally drunk, being sick everywhere and having sex everywhere.

We have been several times to resorts and hotels that are basically Russian guests. The staff in the hotels have always given us 6 star service and go out of their way to help us. Why - the Russians treat them like dirt.

On the food issue - why do Russians take everything they can back to their tables, play with it and then just leave well over half?

Also agree that there are very many warm hearted Russians and Ukrainians who welcome you into their homes and give you their last food - probably these are the ones who do not earn the money to be able to afford to go on holidays overseas.

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 6:08 p.m.    

There's a Russian anecdote that sums up the food issue: A man dies and goes to heaven. He is offered a cup of tea and asked how many sugars he would like. The man answers "two." But, says God, you've never had two spoons of sugar in all of your life. The man answers, "at home I have only one sugar, and when I am at a guest's house, I have three sugars, but two is what I really prefer."

As far as tourists go, not being a big fan of Russia notwithstanding, I must say that I have always found them well-behaved.

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 3:07 p.m.    

there is a certain type of Russian tourist who only understands one thing - being punched in the mouth. But once you do that, he starts understanding real, real good.

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 4:21 p.m.    

Better 100 tourists from Russia, Ukraine or any other former USSR Country instead of 1 german or american tourist!!!!!!!

greetings from vienna!

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 5:30 p.m.    

And your point is what?

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 10:33 p.m.    

The point is that Russian and Ukrainian Tourists are much better in general then other Nationalities. The Brits and Yanks are far worst

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 12:04 a.m.    

How would you know? Ever left the country to see how any Nationalities act? Russians are disrespectful to any kind of rules (exactly like they are in their own country...lawless and corrupt), americans are the same in their own country (loud, arrogant and thinking they are kings of the world) and Brits are just plain awful drunks. Sorry but I have seen everyone in action and this article is not that far off. Just remember not everyone falls into the sterotype... but some do!!!

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Anonymous Feb. 16, 2009, 4:10 p.m.    

You're obviously stuck in Vienna, where I received treatment almost as bad as I did in Moscow as a tourist. Of course you think Russians and Ukrainians are better behaved, theirs is your cultural norm of behavior! In travels all over the world, Viennese are second only to Russians, and unfortunately a lot of Ukrainians, in the rudeness and aggressive behavior department. Its not a sterotypical remark, it's fact based on reality, otherwise you wouldn't find so many confirming remarks here...if you don't like the criticizing, then change the way you treat people. That way you won't read articles like this one and get upset...

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 4:39 p.m.    

If you are in the business industries please look out for shocking nationalities (Ukrainians). Better still keep away and stay far, far, far away. From a pastry shop to the convenient store; customers should always carry an entire pocket full of change if you do not really want to leave the shop with pockets full of sweets. Shop owners never have small change and they scream even scold you for not having any. When you are intending to purchase something and you do not have change. The seller usually pries the product from your hands, screws you and tells you to try other shops or get change for them. However they usually tell you that they do not need your patronage. If you are dense enough, try to show your pitiful face and that would change things a bit. Yeah right! They will give you sweets as change and tell you to be on your merry way.

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 5:40 p.m.    

Great article with the only problem: not too many Russians will get to read it. Wouldn't it have been better to publish it in a Russian-language newspaper? Otherwise, what is the intended audience and the whole purpose of the article???

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 7:18 p.m.    

You obviously didn t understandor even not read the article.

Russians are meant all you folks from the former USSR - and that means Ukrainians, Tadziks, Georgians - simply all of you guys over there. At least the average European class them Russians - pars pro toto.

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 7:42 p.m.    

German Guest:

Expressly for the mentally challenged: Most of Russians (yes, that includes your categories above!) read most easily in... well, Russian. Get it now?

(Needed to include some Germans in the article, quite obviously.)

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 8:35 p.m.    

Are you "Ukrainian" ?

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 9:25 p.m.    

Just from my expierence;

Cuba, CAYA COCA, 2006 our first day in resort - young Brit, around 17-18 years old- absolutely drunk, noisy, obtrusive- finally collapsed , cut by broken bottle his wrists and disappeared with cuban ambulance forever. I never saw him again in resort

DominicaN, Rep, Punta CANA, 2008 our first day in resort-Drunk middle age russian guy was sitting with his family in the restaurant (or whatever the name of resort eatery). Noisy , Absolutely dirty language despite his son sittining in front of him. He was triyng to pinch every waiteress ass passing buy (wife still in front of him). Result - I never saw him again together with his family. Rest of the week he was sitting alone very calm and I would say quite depressed.

Cuba, Holgvin, 2007- iTALO (or Portugese) -cANADIAN family next room to ours. All night so freaking drunk and noisy. Did not care about neighbors at all. Sleeping untill 3 pm. Drinking untill 3 am and playing soccer under such conditions

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 11:41 p.m.    

OmG - which plaaces are you going to for your holiday ? And probably these cheap all you can eat things ? no wonder ...

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Anonymous Feb. 12, 2009, 10:19 p.m.    

I agree you should take a look at US and British tourists around. The US citizens are loud and arrogant and the British are just plain offensive and crude. by comparison the Russian are much more sophisticated. I recall once visiting the historic city of Prague and a group of British men on a stag night felt it necessary to play a mock game of cricket in a loud boisterous manner in the middle of the Prague's main Square. Oblivious to the culture and respect of their host nation. Another example was a rather loud American (As they often are) demanding why he could not exchange his European coins for US dollars at the Airport. They visit foreign countries and expect them to operate just like a big Mac.

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 2:44 a.m.    

The premise is misleading because the behaviour in question isn't ethnic in origin. What the auther is describing as Russian, Ukrainian, Belorussian, etc. has nothing to do with ethnicity, or "slavic" culture. It is the direct result of Soviet ideology where the fantasy of "classless" society was the prevailing social myth. Particularly since the obvious truth behind the misleading slogans was that everyone except the party elites were, in fact, slaves. The boorish ex-soviet tourist is simply exercising the long suppressed impulse to be "superior" to others. Especially the hired help.

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 3:38 a.m.    

What a stale chauvinistic fuss, Alina. What a wrong place to raise an issue, though I'm sure you deserved "well-done" pat on the bum for this scribbling. Every nation has its specific iidentity. Yes, us Russians, who happen to read this, are lacking of culture and patience sometimes, just like everyone else, but the fresh thing is that over past 5-7 years, Russian customer profile underwent great transformation, we're generous, highlly desired in EU' high retail and rarely come across those attitudes you've itemized in detail. What a laughable case with booking rejection in Courchevel- Russian' Mecca, what was wrong with your friends, no visa platinum, perhaps? Your appologies accepted, but honestly, try to think harder before you write for expat resourse next time.

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 4:17 a.m.    

WHY DOES EVERYBODY SAY THAT AMERICANS ARE FAT AND LOUD? ARE YOU GOING TO EAT THAT?

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 11:17 a.m.    

I think Americans are extremely overweight, loud and undereducated.

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 2:03 p.m.    

Right, that would explain why America is so poor, underdeveloped, incompetent, undemocratic, backwards -- oh wait, shit, that sounds like Ukraine!

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 3:09 p.m.    

...and the country with the most Nobel Prizes, ever.

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 3:09 p.m.    

every countries has the some non educated acting citiziens, USA, UK or even Japanese..but russian have the most uncivilized people in the world, would it feel better i explained this way?

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 9:20 p.m.    

jews and the migrants to the usa, especially from the ussr, are the ones who made it developed, in recent years less came there, so the usa economy begins to go down the drain.

the reason they cant make ukraine or russia such developed is because of the limited opportunity through corruption

thats a fact

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Anonymous Feb. 21, 2009, 8:20 p.m.    

and all those American athletes that won so many medals... all fat also?

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Anonymous Feb. 14, 2009, 4:30 a.m.    

No but it does explain why Americans are so rude and arrogant. They lack culture and respect.

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 4:28 a.m.    

Agree 100%. I run two tourism-related businesses in a popular Austrian ski town and have experienced the difference between Russian tourists and those from other parts of the world first hand. I am saddened to say that this article is as close to the truth as they get. I wish it weren't so, but Russians make me ashamed to call myself Russian.

Gregory

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 10:09 a.m.    

Hmmm I don't quite understand - what is the purpose of this article... On one hand it's kind of a reminder on how to behave...but on the other hand - I don't think that people mentioned above in the article can really read english :-))) , so the only thought I've had after reading the article is that author wanted to raise her self-esteem by mocking on the undereducated people.

Myself I totally agree on those specific behaviour traits but I also must mention that it was not really fair putting Russians,Ukrainians and Moldovanians in one basket - ukrainians are quiet and polite in 95% cases, moldovanians ... well I don't know - havent seen any from my experience, russians - totaly yes- rude , agressive and totally undereducated.

Feel myself totaly pissed off and embarrassed when spending my vacation in the same hotel as russians do, but totally follow the advice - to adjust to whatever conditions are and probabbly that makes me feel better about myself.

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 10:12 a.m.    

P.S . It's not the matter of your motherland or language you speak, it's the mentality that makes you european or russian :-) By the way there is a web site where you can see the hotels that are russian-free and plan your vacation into one of them.

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 6:53 p.m.    

My wife and I have just returned from a vacation in Cuba. There were tourists from many countries but the French-Canadians were the worst. They seem to have come for the booze!

I saw some peeing right on the chairs where they were sitting. They were continually yelling and screaming. The women are grossly fat and gorged themselves on the food and alcohol.

As for the tourists from the former Soviet Union, they are a product of the society in which they were raised. Continual shortages, line ups, primitive lving conditions, brutal authorities etc. It was a society where survival of the fittest was the norm. What do you expect of them?

They are also treated with disrespect when abroad and retaliate the only way they know how.

They don't tip because many of them are poor and barely make ends meet.

However, we shouldn't stereotype or profile them. I have met many wonderful, considerate.

kind and cultured people from the former Soviet Union. The misunderstanding is culture

clash.

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Anonymous Oct. 31, 2009, 5:09 p.m.    

Self-deprecating is the favorite pastime of Canadians. They come only second to us Americans. Hidden below the cover of humbleness and modesty, is arrogance and a patronizing attitude towards other 'lesser' people who 'deserve our understanding' and help to raise up to our level. This is the typical liberal, patronizing and condescending attitude of 'us' towards 'them' (look down with a kind smile while saying 'them'). This is all the most pathetic when you realize that other nations are flying past us in most every measure.

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 10:57 a.m.    

I love Ukraine and I personally have no problem with Russia or her people.

However - in my opinion - we Americans are still the worst tourists in the world. We may not be all fat - but god - are we clueless and loud.

We might not push into the front of queue's and get into fights - but we certainly have a limited understanding of most foriegn cultures. Try seeing a group of drunk American tourists in Mexico - yikes!!

The American tourists (generally) who make it to Europe are more educated and certainly wealthier than your average person in the States.

My opinion only - from a genuine redblooded - ugly Amercian toursit - with white socks and bad gap chino's.

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 3:18 p.m.    

Every countries have nice people and non educated acting people...but russians have the majority of uncivilized behavior overall.....

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 3:46 p.m.    

A running joke among tour-guides, waiters and hotel personnel in Europe and elsewhere: what is the difference between an European tourists and a canoe? A canoe tips.

In general, when it comes to what 'counts', we tip, we smile, we are considerate, we don't step on your toes (and if we do, we apologize), we don't cut in line, we don't start bar fights. We don't go to your countries to humiliate you and flaunt money and gold, but to appreciate and learn (we are very curious, often compared to children for that). As for our 'ignorance' for anything outside USA, first of all, this is not true for many Americans. Second, consider that USA is a world on itself, with 50 states, each one the size of an average country. After we are done learning about our own country, we study others. I think it is an issue of priorities and focusing on what is closer first.

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 12:05 p.m.    

Absolutely correct.

Whether you're in London, Paris, Prague, the beaches of Spain, Italy...

you can spot the Russians coming a mile away.

I'm glad they've started to ban them from some resorts. They ruin everybody's holiday.

They are just so so uneducated!

Haven't they got anywhere to go in Russia where they can make people's lives a misery?!

Surely Polonium Putin can sort that one out!

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 1:20 p.m.    

Dear author,

You wrote how we (rus, uk, br) are unsatisfied with everything by revealing your unsatisfying with your citizens! So i guess you are write, maybe. You worte a good oneside article. But there is the other one. Please cover it too.

"people never say “sorry” when they step on your foot" - i cannot agree with that! They do sorry! But at the same time they do step:)))

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 2 p.m.    

I’ve spend quite a lot of time in Russia and Ukraine working as well as living. It's so true what is mentioned in this article. I never had bad experience over the last 12 years coming to Russia and Ukraine, very civilised and friendly people until they go abroad. Mind you the Dutch and Germans were the same 20 years ago (and some of them still are). I'm Dutch myself so I know what I talk about.

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 7:26 p.m.    

I agree with everything you said - except on the issue of barfights.

I'm an American myself, but I've travelled, and lived, in many countries. I have to say, barfights, in my experience, are most common in the US.

At the same time, I agree with the general premise that Slavic peoples (agree, Western Ukrainians are typically much more civil than Eastern Slavic Ukrainians/Russians) lack basic interpersonal skills.

I often make the point to Slavic peoples (and about as often to French people) that if they behaved the way they were behaving in an American bar, some guy would beat the crap out of them.

As it is, Slavs are quite used to being disrepectful, and being disrespected, so their response is rarely violent.

The fundamental issue, I think, is one of respect. It is common practice, and socially acceptable, for Slavs to be disrespectful of strangers.

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 7:34 p.m.    

For some reason, my response was posted as response to you, but was meant for another.

Just the same - while there is nothing wrong with humility - I have to say, I have never met a rude Dutchman. The Dutch, along with Scandinavians, are by and far the most open minded people you can meet anywhere.

Obnoxious German tourists - sure, they are infamous for it (especially in Spain, where the Germans tourists are despised almost as much as the Russians).

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 2:21 p.m.    

That's one of the reasons why you need visas to enter the West (EU) but not the main reason us Europeans are obviously uncomfortable with third world migrants from the former USSR coming in here. We despise the atrocious behaviour from all the Soviet Citizens particularly Russians are the most misbehaved miserable rude people around that roams the European land. Im glad I was not born in the USSR let alone a giant third world country Russia. No wonder many EU Citizens are cold towards foreigners as we are sick and tired of people abusing our services. Russians are the worst cause they refuse to repatriate their refugees and migrants. All I got say is stay out of the EU as we don't want you if your not going to be civilised tourists.

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 8:36 p.m.    

My God, people, where all this arrogance comes from? I don't say Russians are perfect, but why do you think being born in the EU makes you a "carrier of the high culture?" Most of students I met in a grad. school in Britain could not even locate Ukraine on the map and knew no difference between Russia and Ukraine. Most of foreigners still call Ukraine "the Ukraine". Who is ignorant then?

Indeed, there is this "new Russian" kind of people out there - lots of money, lack of understanding what to do with them. But sweaping attempt to generalize based on anecdotical facts is bad taste. People are all different - some more polite, some less.

Finally, for your information, neither the USSR nor Russia have even been a third world country. It is a scientific fact. Some reading would not hurt.

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Anonymous Feb. 14, 2009, 11:50 a.m.    

why would people know about Ukraine, tell me then? because the people love to cut the lines? no manners? or because it's well known of the beautiful cheap girl? or because of they have the highest HIV rate in europe?why would they want to know about the different btw russia and ukraine? i agree with you, some polite, and most are not, it is same with any other countries, but russian has the most attitude problem...no doubt that new russians are getting their path towards civilization, whenever people talk about russia or ukraine, they fall into the same catergory, why? prostitution, military and attitude problem, where the arrogance from? because the fact that russian having attitude problem, we just pointed it out, if there isn't a problem, nobody would talk about it

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 2:58 p.m.    

The author of this article hit the spot, this is so true about folks from ex-Soviet Republics. These countries are infested with rude, bad mannered people. I feel sorry for them because they treat each other horribly and that is seen everywhere, in stores, transportation. Therefore, this atittude spill over when they are abroad.

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 3:46 p.m.    

I want to say that even our behaviour is bad, ukrainian is sincerous nation, we often tell true and trully behave! but i can*t say it about foreign nations!!!

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 6:34 p.m.    

we are just a bunch of foreigners that been to your country, and begin with our discussion about it, we talk about it, because it's the fact, it's an annoying problem, and it's our mouth to decide what to talk about, if you are not agree with it, you just have to ignore it and continue to cut the lines when you are in other countries, if you do not care about what people think of your people, then let it be, we do not care either, we are just laughing at you inside and you gonna be our jokes everytime, that's it, we can't put a nuclear bomb on your land either even we hated you so much...if there is a problem, it is.....we don't make it out to disgrace a nation in sudden, everyone has the same opinions about it, what can you do...russian love sacarsicm talk, and now i am explaning this in the same way...

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 3:53 p.m.    

Recently, in Cuba on vacation, my wife and I noticed a group of very surly looking guests at the resort. Not once during the entire week did any of that group smile. Not once did we ever see them sober. Not once were any of them polite. Continuously, they butted into lines and into events. After a few days, I had opportunity to speak with one of the group. My pleasantness was returned with cold indifference. I was informed by that person that they were from Russia.

It is sadly interesting to find from this news article that this boorish perception of the Russian tourists is true.

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 3:59 p.m.    

The article is spot on. My very young,beautiful and talented Ukrainian wife of almost 6 years also agrees. Her mother on the other hand is typical Ukrainian. Complaining about everything, everything is so much better in Ukraine, all over my ass,but still cant wait to load up and come here every chance she gets. My wife certainly sees the wrongs of Russians and Ukrainians. As a local coordinator, we have 5x as much trouble with students from former USSR countries. You can never please them. The only ammo I use for heated debates is "then why are you here"..Go 15 minutes outside of most any major city in Ukraine or Russia and they still have outdoor toilets and in the best malls in the country you still have to squat and take a crap in a hole in the floor and it costs you 25 cents. I certainly implement American rules when it comes to breaking in line in front of me when I'm in Ukraine. F-You is pretty universal and I certainly dont mind throwing some hands when I have to as well.

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 5 p.m.    

Any considerate person, regardless of their nationality, who has travelled extensively would concur with the statements in this article. I can only surmise that it stems from having been 'under the thumb' of totalitarianism that any freedom (and disposable income) they experience brings out the worst in them. I will always avoid a majority-Russian hotel/resort as I don't want my holidays ruined by bores.

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Anonymous April 16, 2009, 1:27 p.m.    

lavs need the soviet union/totalirialism to function properly, they cannot be civillized without a good spanking. shame on america for destroying it

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 6:18 p.m.    

come on, everyone just admit it, you know russians have problems with their attitude, it's known worldwide, those that are defending on behalf of russians are either given nice handsome bribe in business, or you are F**** a russian p****...it's not about poverty, povery has nothing to do with it, nor wealthy, it is about attitude problem, not all of them...but maybe 80% of them...80% of them showing attitude problem at least, young or old...they having the problem to show manners towards everything, the least moral that everyone should have...i am a foreigner living in Ukraine for 7 years, i know what is going on here.

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 6:27 p.m.    

even the people, the local citizens admit that they are not happy with their life, they are not happy, no gas in winter, no water, low salary, what can you expect more? to smile at you? who to blame? social? government? and for rich, they think they are super rich, and have powers, and to be respected everywhere they go once they are abroad, but they never knew the way they acting and treating people are annoying because they think they have the money, it's not about money, poor or middle class or rich....they show the same attitude....

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 7:37 p.m.    

Agreed - its about a common sense of respect.

Respect for strangers is not valued in Slavic culture. I've often discussed this with Slavs (I've lived extensively in both Ukraine and Russia).

Some common Slavic response (to my thoughts on lack of respect for strangers in Slavic lands):

1) We are not nice to strangers because strangers are mean.

2) That is simply not true, we are very polite to friends, family, and coworkers.

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Anonymous March 27, 2009, 5:50 a.m.    

Are you talking about Ukrainians?

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 7:12 p.m.    

Russian" tourists are those who have money, and in the Soviet Union you didn't make money the normal way. You made it by being corrupt. This is a corruption and "nouveau riche" problem rather than a specifically Russian problem. I've lived in Ternopil for 16 years and one thing I try to remember to tell all my English classes is that Americans aren't as polite as Ukrainians are. But then, I don't know any New Ukrainians.

In the West you make money by serving people, not by cheating them and stealing from them. Why shouldn't New Russian tourists act like uncultured peasants? That's what they are! Other people are to be exploited. They have no rights; they are cattle to be milked, not fed.

By the way, we Americans are just as loud at home as we are abroad, and you Ukrainians speak so softly it's not just difficult to understand your language, it's often difficult to hear what you say. Three generations of being afraid the KGB was listening, perhaps.

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Anonymous Feb. 14, 2009, 11:43 p.m.    

I liked your answer. Especially the part about talking too softly. It's very hard for me to hear some of my friends and relatives. (I am from the USA) They think I am too loud. Maybe so, but in my case it's more a matter that I am losing my hearing and to make matters worse they talk too softly! I am constantly asking them to speak up. Recently I asked a friend of mine who is not hard of hearing if they talk too softly or not. He stated emphatically that they do (talk too softly).

I traveled a lot too and found rude people everywhere. They are those who are spoiled and feel a special sense of entitlement. people from good homes who were "well brought up" are very kind and good to associated with regardless of their country, race, class, political or economic status.

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 7:13 p.m.    

Alina Rudya,

sure, we are not "angels"

sure some not like you describe

http://news.sky.com/skynews/Home/Sky-News-Archive/Article/20080641266994

looks like author wants to get more attention with "antirussian" article, imho

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Anonymous Feb. 14, 2009, 2:28 a.m.    

Why don't you read it again? Unless I'm mistaking what you meant, she also included Ukrainains, Belorrusians and otherr ex soviets in the 'Russian' category.

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 7:38 p.m.    

I think anyone who was brought up during the bad era would be a little sicko and for that reason i cut most Russians and Ukrainians some slack for that reason.. but most just want an opportunity to make a better life for themselves. if they get that then they would be more like normal loudmouths who get everything in life.. there's only so much good upbringings and opportunities will get you.. some things you have to do on your own.. like being polite to others..

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Anonymous Feb. 13, 2009, 9:23 p.m.    

jews and the migrants to the usa, especially from the ussr, are the ones who made usa developed, in recent years less came there, so the usa economy begins to go down the drain.

the reason they cant make ukraine or russia such developed is because of the limited opportunity through corruption

thats a fact

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Anonymous Feb. 14, 2009, 12:47 a.m.    

The article has many generalizations but it is unfortunately often the case.

I have travelled often to Ukraine and I see the same behaviour there inside the country!!

In time, it will change as the people from these countries absorb more of the good things that the west has to offer. I look to more and more communication and exchange as the answer. I think the internet is important and I hope the east can avoid aborbing the bad things the west has to offer!!!!!!

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Anonymous Feb. 14, 2009, 4:38 a.m.    

The hospitality of Russian and Ukrainians is unsurpassed. Those that can afford to travel and stay in luxury hotels are not representative of Ukraine or Russia. IN my extensive travels around both countries I have found no better nation on earth.They would share there last meal and last drink end make you welcomed. If you have ever been invited to a Russian house for dinner you will know what I am referring to. Ukraine and Russia and by far much better people to enjoy the celebration of good company then any English speaking nation. Most people when traveling abroad find that those from their own culture to be "Out of place" I know I often have walk away when I hear an English/American accent in the street. Being fluent in English I can pickup what is being said much more then my Ukrainian or Russian friends. It is very embarrassing I can assure you.

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Anonymous Feb. 14, 2009, 7:06 a.m.    

best manners must come first what ever country tourist came from. i hope readers will not consider this article as a black eye but a challenge to be more humane whatever sittings dictates

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Anonymous Feb. 14, 2009, 9:18 a.m.    

Except for the common bottles of vodka where you see Russian sit they for the most part look like regular tourists... and the tourists I have met even if they are stoned drunk usually do not make a nuisance of themselves. They simply want to relax and forget their many problems for awhile. Vacations are a release for the very desperate life they are required to live... Young single men in groups can be a problem but that's in every country.. Family's especially with children are very nice and don't bother anyone. They have enough to take care of keeping an eye on their children.

(maybe the author was speaking of just young students without much money or sense, they are usually the problem but it comes with young age, in time they grow up)

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Anonymous Feb. 14, 2009, 9:27 a.m.    

//A wealthy family from Moscow, friends of mine, wanted to go to Courchevel, a fashionable French ski resort where the richest and best go//

Best???

say no more

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Anonymous Feb. 14, 2009, 10:12 p.m.    

Well, well, well...it seems we have a lot of very upset Ukrainians replying to the article, and as the last person's response indicated, far, far too many of them are exactly what the article describes; arrogant, rude and inconsiderate, and whining about it.

I have been in Ukraine for over 8 years, so I am not a casual "foreign tourist." I have traveled very extensively throughout Western and Eastern Europe, including Russia, not just Ukraine and have met all "levels" of Slavic society peoples; rich, poor, and in between. My wife is Russian and she agrees completely with this article. I just wrote friends in the USA wanting to come to Ukraine for tourism regarding this very subject; dealing with Ukrainians' rudeness, constant aggression, pushing and shoving, loud overt drunkenness (a badge of honor here), peeing in public, and uncivilized attitude by the young and old alike. It seems Ukraine is still an 18th century village country filled with warring Cossacks. Just look at the RADA!

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Anonymous Feb. 15, 2009, 7:53 a.m.    

Hmmmm, in the USA loud overt drunkenness is a badge of honor here as well. Constant aggression, pushing and shoving is practically taught in schools here. Dude, you dont want to go there with peeing in public. There are some homeless guys outside my office that use the bus shelter as... well, never mind. As for uncivilized behavior, USA didnt invent it but Jerry Springer packaged it up for TV. All in all, I would say that USA is still number one.

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Anonymous Feb. 15, 2009, 7:54 a.m.    

I knew I liked the Ukranian people.

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Anonymous Feb. 17, 2009, 12:13 a.m.    

So that justifies the Russians and Ukrainians who do it? Good thinking, Hiccup. A real 'intelligent' response from someone who isn't even here! Go back into your bus stop and stop bothering us with worthless rhetorical generalizations and reverse justifications. And zip up your pants along with your mouth...your intelligence is showing.

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Anonymous Feb. 17, 2009, 1:25 p.m.    

You are right. Mr Hiccup is a douchbag but at leaste he thinks he has all the answers. He has that going for him.

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Anonymous Feb. 14, 2009, 10:57 p.m.    

I saw everything you have discribed. But not from the "Russians" as you write down, but from real Russians, and not from the Ukrainians. I do not understand why you continue to confuse the Ukrainians and Muscovites ? All the examples you have cited, were those with the citizens of Russian Federation. Have you ever seen anything like described in your article from the Ukrainians !?

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Anonymous Feb. 16, 2009, 4:46 a.m.    

I agree, Ukrainians have better manners than Russians. Unfortunately the West assumes they, Eastern Europeans, are all alike.

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Anonymous Feb. 17, 2009, 3:46 a.m.    

The west does not consider those from Eastern Europe the same as Russians, most of us know the difference. Ukrainians would never act like those from Russian Federation. It is true, Russian tourist demand everything and give nothing in return, they're the worst tippers in the world.

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Anonymous Feb. 18, 2009, 10:04 p.m.    

What are you three on about?

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Anonymous March 27, 2009, 5:55 a.m.    

But you like they money .HA

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Anonymous Feb. 15, 2009, 6 a.m.    

I have travelled many times to ukrainia and for the most part found the people to gracious, kind and very hospitable. There is a quiet dignity to them that is not found in amny cultures in the west. There are some that have boorish or rough manners but so does New Yorkers or Londoners. But russians well what can i say, they think the world is either afraid of them or owe them something. Neither is the case. They just don't matter. However, the women of ukraine I have found to be jewels, that is why I married one and consider my ukrainian family to be part of our family whether in US or UA. Class and dignity can be found both in slavic and non-slavic culture. God bless...

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Anonymous Feb. 15, 2009, 8:15 a.m.    

Forgive me as I take a moment to remind my American friends of something lest they become to judgmental:

There is a mighty woman who holds a torch aloft, whose flame lights the way for all the worlds exiles. From her beacon-hand glows world-wide welcome; while her mild eyes scan the air-bridged harbor. "Ancient lands, keep your storied pomp!" she cries with silent lips. "Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"

I just seemed like a good time to reflect on that.

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Anonymous Feb. 15, 2009, 9:35 a.m.    

I just got back from bible camp, where I learned to be more judgemental, so I can't help but practice.

We can gossip on and on about all the nuances, and the fact that stereotypes and generalizations never hold up 100% of the time, but, the fact is, just about everywhere you go, most people agree - Russians (Slavs) are exceptionally rude and generally disrespectful. I pointed it out before, but will do so again - the foundation for the problem is that, in Slavic culture, it is acceptable to be rude to strangers.

Bernie Madoff may rip off a charity for its entire net worth, but, if he steps on your foot in public, he'll stop, and give you a sincere apology. It is this superficial level of manners that is being discussed here.

Just the same - I agree with you, in terms of getting boisterously drunk, and pissing all over the place, Americans are tied for number one with the Brits and the Scotts. I'm American, and quite often take down much too much bourbon - more often than no

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Anonymous Feb. 15, 2009, 9:38 a.m.    

Just the same - I agree with you, in terms of getting boisterously drunk, and pissing all over the place, Americans are tied for number one with the Brits and the Scotts. I'm American, and quite often take down much too much bourbon - more often than not, while in EE, it is Russians/Ukrainians that seem shocked (and even attempt, but fail, to restrain me) when I pee in public during my drunken stupors.

What is most shocking to Westerners about Russians isn't their rough external behavior - its the fact that they have the gall to bark at you that YOU are behaving improperly (by crossing the street somewhere other than a crosswalk, or, god forbid, putting your feet up!).

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Anonymous Feb. 15, 2009, 11:25 a.m.    

I find the Slavic manners impeccable and refreshing. I haven't run into a rude Russian tourist yet here in America.

The men are something else got the latinos beaten by a mile with their sweet talking.

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Anonymous Feb. 16, 2009, 6:44 a.m.    

?

Sweet talking Russians?

I've met hundreds of Russians - not one could be classified as a 'sweet talker'.

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Anonymous Feb. 15, 2009, 6:18 p.m.    

The author is absolutely right, I have been in Russia and Ukriane many time and find the people in Moscow very rude, they do not smile, do not talk, The people in Kiev much more civil

they are warm and welcoming people,,,,yes I have seen Russian behaving badly as a turist, they they are like new richs....they think that they deserve the best and are the loudest,

as for American, well you are educated and civil no matter what other people think of us....

just come to America and see how you are treated......

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Anonymous Feb. 15, 2009, 7:51 p.m.    

Obviously you are just biased towards Russians. In his article, the author clearly states that by "Russians" he means russian-speaking people people from Belarus, Ukraine, Russia, Moldova, etc. Also, the author talks about tourists, not the native population. Since I'm living in the US I can observe all of the comers from the former USSR, and so far I could not draw a distinct line between how Ukr. and Rus. people act. They both act the same way the author has described.

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Anonymous Feb. 15, 2009, 7:45 p.m.    

I am British and have lived in provincial Russia the past four years. I find the people generally polite, courteous, and friendly - when they are in familiar territory and company, the rest of the time....well the author got it just about right.

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Anonymous Feb. 16, 2009, 12:08 a.m.    

You will never change peoples minds or behavior by mocking them or making stereotypical judgments about them. I have told this story before, so forgive me. Yankee Doodle is british slang for a silly american wanker who was a backwoods boob. The british redcoats would sing songs mocking the fictional american "Yankee Doodle" to pass the time as they marched. The Americans picked up the song and made it their own. When the war was won, across the land church bells rang and the Americans sang the song that once mocked them. Even today, every american child is taught a version of the song. If the Russians are truly boorish, drunken slobs then there may be hope yet for world peace as we are all cut from the same cloth.

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Anonymous Feb. 16, 2009, 6:48 a.m.    

Its a lost cause. No method can work with changing the minds of Russians - part of the root problem is their arrogance - as far as they are concerned, they have absolutley nothing to learn from any Westerner.

If you are the CEO of an oil drilling company, any given Russian would be happy to explain to you how oil exploration works.

If you are a mechanic, any Russian would be happy to explain to you how cars work.

Get the picture?

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Anonymous Feb. 17, 2009, 12:16 a.m.    

I don't care what becomes of the Russians, I care about Ukraine. I am American, so I understand that news and entertainment are often one in the same. What I hope you will see is that this type of article is the fast food of news. It makes you feel good for a while, but a steady diet of it will make you sick. I would rather read your opinion on subjects that matter to your country. Are the people of Ukraine rude or polite to one another? Are they afraid to speak out against the government? Do people drink to much? Are drugs a problem? Crime? If you work on getting your own house in order, you may do more to change the behavior of the Russians for the better.

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Anonymous March 27, 2009, 5:46 a.m.    

Sorry for you an American, 1000 Ukrainians served in Iraq with you to kiss your buttocks but your commanders send them back home because they were stealing money from you. This is from USA,s newspaper. You are better to read or listen not just your government BS but do research on your own. Russians are great people with literacy level 100%,to compare you guys, they are genius. I like that they are telling the truth, the way they feel. They can say that they do not like instead of saying O LIKE IT VERY MUCH ,and fool you around. And STOP your propaganda.

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Anonymous April 16, 2009, 1:15 p.m.    

ukraine = russia's little sister same breed of dog

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Anonymous Feb. 16, 2009, 12:17 a.m.    

I had to laugh a little when I read about "Russians" standing up and heading towards the airplane door as soon as the wheels hit the tarmac. I have noticed that on every trip in and out of Ukraine and Russia over ten years. Of course, each time the US or European airline flight attendants get on the public address and tell everyone to sit down, and of course they are ignored. On internal Russian flights, everyone gets up as if doing so will save time (which it doesn't) of as if they're going to go out and help push the plane, and it's tolerated. There's often no announcement to "remain seated until the plane has parked at the gate and the seatbelt sign is turned off." It would be ignored, anyway.

Many westerners habitually make their own queues at an airplane gate or ticket window if there isn't one set off by ropes. Russians, Ukrainians, et al, mostly crowd around and push forward with no sense of personal space or consideration.

It's no wonder the stereotypes continue.

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Anonymous Feb. 16, 2009, 4:38 a.m.    

I had to laugh when I thought about the smiling Japanese person with all of the electronics. I have seen those and that big Japan smile IS funny too.

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Anonymous Feb. 16, 2009, 6:53 a.m.    

Flying out of Washington, DC, there is a 30 minute rule - you have to remain seated 30 minutes prior to landing/after take-off. Inevitably, there are one or two Russians aboard, and, like clockwork, they stand up - this causes severe commotion, as you can imagine - its not a lax rule.

I'd have to give them some slack on this one though - the root cause is more likely one of language, not mentality (they fail to understand the special instructions).

It is funny to watch, though, as everyone flips out, and the poor Russian doesn't have a clue why everyone is screaming at him :)

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Anonymous Feb. 19, 2009, 12:31 a.m.    

This is much about language, perhaps not that the Russians don't understand the English words, but the tone is very different.

In English, you would say "Please remain seated", but in Russian: "You must sit down!" The Russian language is much more direct and commanding.

When a foreigner talk politely to a Russian, the Russian doesn't understand what the foreigner wants. And when a Russian talks like this to a foreigner, it sounds very inpolite and the foreigner is offended.

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Anonymous March 8, 2009, 9:36 p.m.    

GOOD POINT!!!!

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Anonymous Feb. 16, 2009, 10:59 a.m.    

"But the most controversial, hated, mocked and avoided type of tourist is a “Russian” tourist. Important notice: when I say “Russian,” I mean all Slavic post-Soviets. Probably one of these nations does more than the others in perpetuating the negative image abroad, but I will generalize here. Unfortunately as it is, for most Europeans as well as for the rest of the world, Ukrainians, Belarusians and even Moldovans are still “Russians” when they go abroad."

Sorry to tell you Alina, but you got it quite WRONG.

You must be Russian, right?

I have seen that Ukrainians behave quite differently when travelling abroad, not

like Russians at all. Now Russians from Ukraine may act like Russians, but then

they aren't really Ukrainians are they?

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Anonymous Feb. 17, 2009, 9:51 a.m.    

I was in charge of a touristic agency in France and I can say that we cannot do any difference between Russians and Ukrainians in term of dirtiness and incivility. They are exactly the same. So, why do you want to exacerbate this crazy nationalism ?

Ukrainians and Russians are together on the black list.

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Anonymous Feb. 17, 2009, 3:10 p.m.    

Yes, but have you noticed that the dirty and uncivil "Ukrainian" tourists are always Russian-speaking Ukrainians, usually hailing from Dnipropetrovsk, Donetsk, Xarkov, Odessa, etc? Ukrainian-speaking Ukrainians on the whole do not suffer from this malaise and lack of culture.

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Anonymous Feb. 18, 2009, 12:37 p.m.    

"I _was_ in charge of a touristic agency" - boy, doesn't it make me smile :)

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Anonymous Feb. 20, 2009, 3:03 a.m.    

GOOD POINT. :)

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Anonymous Feb. 17, 2009, 8:08 p.m.    

Yes Alina you are right and thank you for writing this story. Shame on those who want to shoot the messenger (Alina) and don't bother to listen to her story.

I am a Ukrainian who grew up in America and sadly I have to agree with Alina. I also say "Russians" since most Ukrainians insist on speaking Russian when abroad so how are people to distinguish them. And yes most Americans can distinguish Russian from Ukrainian, Polish or Armenian etc.

As far as rudenss, it is something that grew out of the Soviet system and sadly continues although it is improving in Kyiv. Calling grown woman "Hey girl" (Devuska) is very offensive and I wonder why they put up with such insults.

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Anonymous Feb. 18, 2009, 12:21 a.m.    

Notions of what is “very offensive” is a cultural meme. It wouldn't be considered “offensive” for people of similar age to address groups of men and women as “boys” and “girls” in Italian, for example. In Ukrainian, 30-year old co-workers wouldn't necessarily bristle at “khloptsi” or “divchata.”

The fact that you might, may be more of an indication of your exposure to the language and manners police in your country than it would be a bona fide litmus test of politeness.

pomityla, dyevushka?

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Anonymous Feb. 18, 2009, 9:57 p.m.    

No Gaz, I think the author is just talking about a preponderance of rude zhlobs, not ragazzi or khloptsi.

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Anonymous Feb. 18, 2009, 1:35 a.m.    

I have just come back from a tourist visit to Ukraine to find the same suspicion , hidden anger, intolerance and incapacity to talk about problems or apologise for overbearing and bullying behaviour even from apparently cultured fluent French- speaking Ukrainians of my generation (late middle age ) that I encountered in Russia a few years ago .. I suspect that no-one escapes untouched from 70 years of repression. It is however very hard to love this mentality . My hope for your sad country lies with the young people who have not had this experience.Let's hope that their vitality and youth will make a difference to the future , and that they will not simply be seduced by our Western consumerism.

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Anonymous Feb. 18, 2009, 5:33 a.m.    

Maybe the bad influence is from the French culture, not the Ukranian. Cheese eating surrender monkeys.

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Anonymous April 16, 2009, 1:06 p.m.    

well said colbert

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Anonymous Feb. 18, 2009, 12:35 p.m.    

With all due disrespect, you've done a great job writing a totally lame article.

First, you say, "Until I left Ukraine I thought that arrogance was the norm." A few paragraphs below, it goes, "It escapes me why the Russian tourists behave the way they do."

So, does it escape you indeed? Just get over with your holier-than-thou attitude, ok?

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Anonymous Feb. 18, 2009, 6:24 p.m.    

I think that this article is written with indifference, I just came back from an experience in Ukraine, and I believe that people are just too thin skinned. Have you seen the work ethic of Russians/Ukraine? They work many hours and always have somewhere to go and don't have the priviliages as other countries. As far as the demeanour of Ukraine men, yes some were abrasive but most were too busy to care about what was going on around them. As far as the drinking, yes, It's part of the culture and an escape. Especially when vodka is cheaper to buy than a bottle of water? It's quite obvious what is comsumed. I'm not an alcoholic and I went to Ukraine to experience a slice of another world and I had a great time. As far as the article goes, I'm pleased that it was written to discuss further what may need to happen to invite a more mannered citizen towards this post-Soviet world. If you cannot survive a fast paced life, then stay out of the way.

Thanks,

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Anonymous March 5, 2009, 2:56 p.m.    

Famous quotation from the Vladimir Putin’s speech at the Chekist Day party at the FSB headquarters in

December 1999 was: “I want to report to you that the mission of the group of FSB officers sent undercover

to work at the government is being accomplished successfully.”

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Anonymous March 6, 2009, 4 p.m.    

I don't know why I am surprised... What else could one expect from article in Kyiv post? More russophobic hysteria, more jealousy, more racial profiling.

One day you'll get what you repeatedly asked for, and Russians will stop looking at you as a brother nation... whiny, aggressive, adolescent, but still brother.

Alina, you either full of yourself of have no clue what you talking about. People rude on the street? Where did you get that?

I lived in Canada for 9 years now and I had been pushed, stept on my feet, and otherwise had my personal space violated more than I ever had for 20 years in Russia. Even if you factor that public transit is so much less overcrowded in Canada.

True, western people seem more polite, because they usually say "I'm sorry", problem is... they almost never mean it. Sorry has long lost its meaning. Look in the people eyes when they say it, and you will see "f-you, i don't care".

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Anonymous March 20, 2009, 7:14 a.m.    

lila, Although the author used the term 'Russians', I believe she meant it in the sense of 'Slavic' - ie, she was speaking of the majorities of Ukraine, Belarus, and Russia - she didn't intend to say that Russians (citizens of Russia) are rude, while Ukrainians are not.

That said - hogwash. No one can sincerely say that Canadians are less sincerely polite than Slavs.

I do have to say, I have come to the conclusion that this discussion is a waste of time - all none Slavs are perfectly aware of Slavic (bad) manners, and Slavs will always deny they are wrong in any way. So what is the point?

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Anonymous March 6, 2009, 4:06 p.m.    

People don't smile to you? Study Russian culture. There is a good old saying that holds true in any langue (though does not rhyme that well in english) "Smile with out a reason is a sign of stupidity".

Tell me a good joke, and I will smile... Otherwise I am unclear why you think Russians supposed to be autistic or something.

I truly laugh at another person who thinks "devushka" is an offensive name calling. And people like that call Russians arrogant? Oh the irony...

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Anonymous March 30, 2009, 9:09 p.m.    

Unlike the "Russians", Canadians typically:

- will park their cars in designated spaces, and not on lawns or sidewalks; or will leave the car at home

- will let the pedestrians cross the street before them when they are turning

- will often hold the door for you, instead of letting it slam at your nose

- will form a neat line at a bus stop, at the airport, at the hotel reception

- will use lower voice on a residential street when it's past 23:00

- will not drink beer from 2 L plastic bottles

- will not care about their country's ability to kick your country's behind

(similar applies to Germans, the and to many nations in Europe, which were not occupied recently by the Russians)

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Anonymous March 13, 2009, 3:07 a.m.    

I agree with you Alina. My experince in Russia ( Moscow) and Ukraine ( most cities) Suggests that post-soviet people exist as american welfare recipients. They have welfare mentality. Gi' me gi' me ( give to me)

make available free food and they will destroy it and then waste what they have. American blacks on welfare behave like this. They are pushy, rude, unmannered (like villigers?), they smoke and blow smoke on you, will spit on you if it comes to it.

I oncw was at a water park in Orlando, Florida, A russian family of 6 pushed their way to the front of the line. I told them to go back to Moscow. They basically ignored me. I thought how typical behavior for a russian.

BTW I have travel through Russia several times and have traveled extesivly throughout Ukraine over the last 8 years. My wife is ethnic Russian and after several years of living in Florida can now see the bad behavior of many ( not all) russians ( and maybe other FSU Former soviet union countries)

Mike in FL

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Anonymous March 13, 2009, 3:08 a.m.    

Sorry for the poor spelling.

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Anonymous March 18, 2009, 9:25 a.m.    

Agreed,

Foreign companies in Ukraine should not employ anyone over 35 years of age. Invest in people and leave lobotomized crowd out!!! Let them expire.....

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Anonymous March 24, 2009, 5:53 p.m.    

Why on the Earth should I smile to someone? Is it wrong? Why americans do this? Is this good? The answer for each of the questions is - because this is culture.

The article has some points but in general you cannot say that some one is rude because their does not behave like you. Maybe it is you who is rude and crazy. Isn't it rude to think vise versa?

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Anonymous March 27, 2009, 5:03 a.m.    

O, boy! I live in Canada,it is little bit better than in USA. People smile,say sorry or tell you I love you,but do they really think this way? Of course not. They do not care.They will set you up at work,they will lay you off from work with smile on their face etc. At least Russian show the way they feel, but I don,t like when you consider everybody as Russians. Ukrainians are not Russians and I herd horrible stories about them. It is just few Russians in Canada, but it is a lot of Ukrainians, and everybody thinks that they are Russians. YHEY ARE NOT.

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Anonymous March 31, 2009, 5:38 p.m.    

have been in Ukraine for more than 15 years. I am from the USA. I think the Ukrainians are great people. Kind and generous in so many ways once you get to know them. However, the desciption in this article is accurate. I am constantly apologizing to Americans for their reactions to Ukrainians and Russians. I tell them they are not that way, only initial impressions. I think it is cultural and a need to force your way in order to get something. Just consider the road rage in Ukraine and Russia. People just stop in the middle of the streets and get out to fight. Just a week ago my friend in Kyiv was shot at by another car. The bullet broke the windows but didn't hit him and his family. These seem normal to Ukrainians. In the west, that man would be pusued and arrested. It is sad that such behavioral need to push and fight...causes a stereotype of a great people. Instead of defending these behaviors, it will be better to admit them and change them.

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Anonymous April 22, 2009, 12:37 p.m.    

I agree with Alina.This is all truth.

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Lida Yakovleva Sept. 2, 2012, 7:59 p.m.    

Excuse my poor English. I am from Ukraine. Some of Ukranians are really correspond to this article, but it is not the majority of Ukranians. We have a lot of very friendly, politely and hospitable people in our country, especially in western regions. And I think, that most of our guests on Euro-2012 can confirm that. But I agree that our country it is not ideal. And we have a lot of things to work with.

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Lida Yakovleva Sept. 2, 2012, 8 p.m.    

Excuse my poor English. I am from Ukraine. Some of Ukranians are really correspond to this article, but it is not the majority of Ukranians. We have a lot of very friendly, politely and hospitable people in our country, especially in western regions. And I think, that most of our guests on Euro-2012 can confirm that. But I agree that our country it is not ideal. And we have a lot of things to work with.

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