There are a lot of negative connotations attached to the word "tourist." While it's inevitable that when traveling abroad, you'll look and feel like an outsider at times, it's easy to avoid tourist hate.
Here are seven simple ways to not look like a tourist. We promise, it will make your travels even better.
1. Stay out of the way.
It's fine to want to take a moment to absorb your surroundings, snap photos or consult with friends. But if you and your crew park yourselves in the middle of a busy city sidewalk, you're asking for trouble. Find a less crowded spot, grab a seat on a bench or duck into a cafe if you need to a moment to regroup.
2. Do your research.
Make sure you know the temperature and clothing norms for the destinations you're visiting. You don't want to be that foreigner caught without a jacket on a cold night or in short shorts while touring a place of worship abroad.
3. Put the map away.
Walking around with your face in a guidebook is an easy way to not only look you have no idea where you're going (a welcome sign to pickpockets, for sure), but you'll probably also miss out on much of your surroundings. Study your maps and travel books before you go, save some notes in your phone, and get out there. If you really do get lost, be discreet about pulling out your maps.
4. Learn the language.
You don't need to be fluent in the foreign language of the country you're in -- but a few key phrases, polite words like "please" and "thank you" and greetings will help you seem a little less clueless.
5. Respect local customs.
Customs and etiquette vary widely from country to country. If you read up on your destination, you'll likely learn about the ones that foreigners most often encounter. Don't assume that because you're from elsewhere, these don't apply to you. You're going to get funny looks if you order a cappuccino after dinner in Italy or eat with your left hand in India, the Middle East and parts of Africa.
6. Don't be a stereotype.
It can be easy to get wrapped up in your surroundings, but don't forget you're a visitor and you are representing your home country wherever you go. Don't be that sloppy, drunk tourist. Don't be that loud, obnoxious tourist. Don't be that messy, unkempt tourist. You probably don't like those kind of people -- so don't be one.
Also on HuffPost:
10) Sierra Leone
Sierra Leone has been a war zone for some time and is probably best known as a source of "blood diamonds." The capital, Freetown, has come up in the world but it hasn't brought the rest of the country along.
This rich Middle Eastern country has plenty of sun but few welcome mats.
8) Trinidad and Tobago
Trinidad and Tobago is a beautiful country and its presence on the list is slightly baffling, considering the locals are very friendly. Still, infrastructure could be better. <em>Correction: This slide originally showed an image of Trinidad, Cuba, which is a lovely but irrelevant destination.</em>
Chad has few roads and few peaceful areas. Not the kind of place you want to be.
Haiti is possessing of all manner of charms and every conceivable manner of problem.
Not the most welcoming place for westerners. Ixnay on the beachwear.
Algeria is a beautiful country, but the Arab Spring hasn't made it safer for the European tourists who used to come here.
Mother Russia is the go to destination for lovers of bureaucracy, paperwork and transportation boondoggles.
Bolivia made the list despite boasting some genuinely striking attractions, including the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/28/salar-de-uyuni-bolivias-s_n_1063372.html">Salar de Uyuni</a> salt flats and the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/12/16/eerie-and-amazing-photos-atacama_n_1149478.html">Atacama Desert</a>.
<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/03/05/hugo-chavez-dead_n_2296423.html?utm_hp_ref=politics&ir=Politics">Chavez is dead</a> but the anti-Western sentiment lives on. It may have the highest waterfalls on Earth, but it doesn't have much of an eco-tourism industry. Pity really.