Cityvisitor blog

France gets a friendly facelift

France has been described by many surveys as being one of the most unwelcoming countries for tourists, but now its leaders have decided enough is enough.

The country has gone to great lengths in the past to shun its “rude” image, including issuing a manual last year teaching workers in the service industry how to be more polite! Other projects in the past have included employing people to smile at tourists around the most popular attractions in Paris such as The Louvre and the Eiffel Tower.

French foreign minister Laurent Fabius has now announced that friendliness to tourists is a national priority, with a special fund being set up to tackle the problem.

Measures are likely to include signs at the airport and public transport hubs welcoming visitors to the country.

Mr Fabius told The Telegraph: “Tourism is a national treasure that needs to be protected, nurtured and developed.”

I’ve got a few ideas of my own that might work. First of all, hand out free chocolate to visitors; the French people will get an enormous sense of wellbeing from the feeling of giving to others and the tourists will get – well chocolate!

Another idea would be to have a costume change or fashion advice facility at the airport – offering tourists less conspicuous outfits for sightseeing in. After all, you can see why Parisians would find it tedious after a while seeing continuous streams of tourists in their city wearing the ‘uniform’ of shorts, big sunglasses, backpack, loud t-shirts with silly slogans on, comfy but unstylish sandals etc…


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