What Are The Differences Between Tourists and Travelers?

When it comes to exploring the world and sightseeing a variety of countries and cities, you may come across some people that are tourists and travelers. Now, some people may think tourists and travelers appreciate the same things when exploring. However, believe it or not their are some major differences between a tourist and a traveler. To give some clarity to what the main differences are between a tourist and a traveler, I decided to come up with a small list to reveal these differences.



  • Travelers enjoy exploring outside of the normal tourist attractions. They enjoy finding the local hangout spots, to really capture the experience of being in another country or city. Travelers like to feel accepted in the area they are exploring because they don’t like to feel like a tourist. For example, travelers tend to refrain from signing up for organized tours because they believe they could learn more about a place by being independent and meeting the native people.
  • Although, travelers don’t like giving off the impression as being a tourist, they do believe in exploring with a group of travelers. When a traveler runs into another traveller, they love trading stories on the best places they came across, while finding out different adventures they can partake in while exploring.
  • Travelers are more inclined to try different foods, the culture has to offer without second guessing because they like to feel like one of the local people. Although, the food may not be the number one thing to eat on their list, travelers are always open minded to try new things.
  • Travelers adore taking pictures while exploring however, they don’t take the ordinary kind of pictures that a tourist would. Travelers tend to take pictures of the local areas and native people to capture the actual lifestyle and culture of an area.



  • Tourist tend to appreciate exploring in a different way than travelers. Tourists would rather sleep in a luxury hotel than backpack it across a country. When exploring tourist like to seem as comfortable as possible because they have a long day of sightseeing and taking pictures.
  • While exploring, tourist have no issues with organizing a week’s worth of tours to learn everything they need to know about the place they are visiting. By planning all the tours and trips before hand, it will contribute to the trip being a success and running smoothly. So you can always catch tourist on tour buses, at museums, and ancient landmarks when exploring. While tourist appreciate the scenery of all these places, they are taking pictures of each exhibit, while making sure to capture a selfie in front of the exhibit.
  • American tourists expect everyone to speak English no matter where they travel. Although, English is the most dominant language in the world, not everywhere and everyone in a different country will speak English. Some tourists will try and learn some of the keywords of a language, but because tourists tend to visit a place for no more than a week, they don’t make an attempt to grasp the language as much as a traveller.
  • Tourists are open to try new food a culture has to offer, but they tend to be very hesitant and close minded to certain foods. They will take a bit of a specific food, just to say they have tried something different when exploring.

Of course, these stereotypes of a traveler and a tourist are more opinionated, more than factual, but these are the most common stereotypes made between the two. Despite, the differences between travelers and tourists, they both have one main thing in common, which is exploring. If you’re interested in learning more about being a traveler and a tourist, you can find more out about this topic here.

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