How to Tell You Are in a Tourist Trap Restaurant
If you find yourself traveling to any popular tourist destination in the world, you are almost certainly going to come across plenty of tourist traps. And even though you might feel confident enough in your ability to identify such places, this task may not be so easy. Tourist trap restaurants are usually bustling throughout the day, so they typically take shortcuts when it comes to food quality. The difference between the price of a meal at such a restaurant and at one which is off the beaten track can be enormous, and so can the quality. Here are a few tips to help you see if you are the customer at the former.
- Proximity to main attractions
This one is definitely a no-brainer. It goes without saying that those restaurants you see close to the main sights will be both pricey and offer subpar food and service. They have high rents and taxes and need to have as high a profit as possible. This means that the food and drinks are not of good quality, and are additionally accompanied by ridiculously high prices. So, the further from the main attractions the better!
- A host/hostess is inviting clients from the outside
When you are passing by a restaurant and you see someone on the street calling you to come in, you should definitely continue walking. There is a reason this restaurant has a staff member coaxing people into coming, and it most certainly is not excellent food – which is why they are practically begging you to enter. Just think about this – would a local enter such an establishment? No, because they are catering precisely to tourists.
- The menu is enormous
If it seems that the menu has as many pages as “Anna Karenina” does, you should get out of there immediately. If there are too many options to choose from and the menu goes on and on, the possibility of food being served fresh with seasonal ingredients is practically non-existent. Good restaurants will only offer a few choices (typically not more than six) for all courses (appetizers, main dish, and dessert). This means that anything more than that is prepared straight from the freezer.
- No locals in the restaurant
This should be pretty obvious. If you all you can hear from the next tables are people speaking different languages and they are equipped with maps, guidebooks, selfie sticks, and cameras – you are surely in a tourist-oriented restaurant where you won’t wind any locals. One thing to look out for is whether the menu is translated into English because if it is, this restaurant primarily caters to tourists.