Loud Americans

During yet another trip to The Surfin Burrito in the Cancun Hotel Zone this past Saturday, I was listening in on the conversation of the 2 tables next to us. Why was I listening in, you ask? Because they were speaking so loudly I had no choice. Of course, they had to be gringos.

In Cancun, American tourists have a reputation for being loud. I’m here to tell you that this stereotype is pretty much dead on, to an extent.

When I hop on the bus to go into the Hotel Zone, it’s filled with mostly Mexicans for awhile… and the bus is silent. Once the bus leaves downtown Cancun and enters the Hotel Zone, tourists start to get on. And the volume level goes way up. I’m not gonna lie, it’s pretty amusing to see dozens of Mexicans sitting quietly in their seats on their way to work while my fellow gringos scream things like “WALMART??”, “DUDE! STEVE WAS SO WASTED LAST NIGHT!”  or “HILTON? HIL-TON? YES? SI? YOU LET ME KNOW! OK! GRACIAS!”

I even heard one guy shout aloud on the bus, asking in all seriousness where the bus stop for “COKER BONGER” was. Jorge and I assume he meant to say Coco Bongo.

What I’ve noticed after 7 years here is that most American tourists are low-key when in public, so the stereotype isn’t 100% true. However, I’ve also never seen anyone from another country act that loudly unless they’re at a party or a sporting event.

In a nutshell: Not all American tourists are loud, but all loud tourists are American.

It’s not a bad thing or an offensive thing to be loud in public. (Especially not in Cancun!) It is pretty funny to watch, though.

What kind of tourist are you?

**Edit: After posting this, I’ve been told by a few friends that it’s not just Americans. Turns out Canadians can get quite rowdy as well. 😉 Party on, Canada. Party on.

15 thoughts on “Loud Americans

  1. After a few trips to Cancun, i have to agree.
    And what kind of tourist am i? I’m the kind of tourist who mumbles “Pinche Americanos” while squeezing past the Yanks to get to the bar. Bartenders tend to like me for that… lol

    PS. first time finding your blog, via CancunCanuck. A good read so far. 🙂

  2. ¡Me encantó tu post! es totalmente cierto, pero creo que es una cuestión cultural… los extranjeros siempre son más “arrebatados” y hablan fuerte y gritan y normalmente “dicen lo que piensan” pero aquí en México la sociedad es muy distinta y siempre he notado que la gente se avergüenza con facilidad o simplemente por “educación” no hablan fuerte… lo mejor son las diferencias y bienvenidos sean todos los turistas gritones o no gritones 🙂 ¡saludos!

  3. This made me laugh. Europeans have a similar stereotype about the British. As a Brit travelling on the continent, I’ve had a few moments of embarrassment regarding the loutish behavior of some of my compatriots. Glaf you’re taking in your stride!

  4. Embarrassment is a BIG word and that’s what I’ve always felt on a bus in Cancun when those LOUD Americans get on. It’s usually during spring break. Wonder if they are like that at home.

  5. I’ve met many Canada folk while in Mexico and it’s true, they are just as loud as us! I’m having flashbacks of being on the bus in Cancun… I was probably the person saying “Hilton, HIL-Ton? You let me know? Si?”
    Sad but true (I was also in my teens… so I didn’t quite get life at that point!)

  6. Oh man. This is 100% on point! It this reminds me of my many many spring breaks in Cancun and wondering, ‘what makes these people think it is okay to act like this!?’ (besides the loudness– I’ve seen some pretty rude stuff)… I remember one time (during baseketball playoffs) our group met another group from MI and the whole ride from Oasis to Coco Bongo they were chanting DEEETRRROIIIT BASSKKETTBALL non-stop at the top of their lungs. I remember all the lovely locals shaking their heads.

    • Nah, the average American riding the bus is sedately sleeping on their way to work. And then they go to Mexico, get in the party mode and behave like monkeys screeching at the zoo. They’re just having fun and blowing off steam.

  7. I saw the same thing in Panama. Except there they have do not follow the social rules of the natives, and tourist take pictures of the Kuna Indians when they are not supposed to. Of course, I’ve told a few that’s its disrespectful to take pictures of Indians unless you have permission, and they look at me like I’m crazy. What are you gonna do?

  8. I know EXACTLY what you mean. When I was living in Scotland, I was living in a very touristy town. I was also working as a waitress at one of the busiest restaurants in town. And every time a table full of Americans came in, everyone (including me!) would groan. They would be so loud and rude and yell at me from across the restaurant…ugh.

  9. I don’t want to seem anti-American in my comment above.
    Honestly, i think it’s more an age demographic than nationality. Drunk kids in the 18-30 range are messed up whenever they’re on holiday, whether they’re Canadian, American, English. They’re away from their families and in that “what happens in cancun stays in cancun” mindset.

  10. Haha! Totally true, especially if they’re drinking. Canadians kick American’s asses when it comes to partying. I used to work for a Canadian company and their conferences were nuts…I couldn’t keep up!

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