The signs you’re a typical British holidaymaker, from packing your own tea bags to an airport full English

From taking tea bags to sun-scorched skin despite slapping on the factor 50, here are the telltale signs of a Brit abroad

Natalie Wilson
Thursday 23 May 2024 06:00 BST
Smart Travel Tips From A Flight Attendant

Do you arrive at the airport with hours to spare, hand luggage bursting with PG tips, jars of Marmite and your designated holiday document wallet? The odds are high that you’re a British tourist.

New research has revealed the top 20 signs of a quintessentially British holidaymaker, and erring on the side of caution by heading to the airport four hours before a flight is the number one giveaway.

The poll of 2,000 Brits found UK tourists are often only bilingual in ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ and have a habit of travelling with home luxuries, including tea bags and Marmite spread.

More than two-thirds of people thought queuing patiently at the gate was ‘classically British’
More than two-thirds of people thought queuing patiently at the gate was ‘classically British’ (Getty Images)

According to the research from Lyca Mobile and Perspectus Global, 27 per cent of British people enjoy a full English before taking off, while 48 per cent of travellers text a family member that they have landed safely on the other side.

Other holiday traits attributed to the nation include queuing patiently at the boarding gate, captioning holiday albums with “never coming home” and heading to the airport with a burnt forehead despite wearing factor 50 sun cream.

Of the Brits surveyed, 44 per cent said they pine for their pillow when travelling, closely followed by tea (41 per cent), TV (35 per cent), bacon (24 per cent) and cheddar cheese (16 per cent).

The research highlighted mobile phones as a ‘lifeline’ for British tourists insistent on checking the weather, navigating and accessing online banking, with 63 per cent worried about data roaming charges.

Over half of respondents also said that they “wouldn’t dream of getting up early and putting a towel on a sun lounger” due to worries about being perceived negatively as a Brit abroad.

James McQuillan, UK and Ireland country manager at Lyca Mobile, said: “When it comes to the nation’s holiday habits, it’s perhaps no surprise our research defines traits such as arriving at the airport early, queuing at the gate and texting home to say we’ve landed safely as classically British.”

Top 20 quintessentially British holidaymaker traits:

  1. Arriving at the airport four hours before your flight – 56 per cent 
  2. Packing your own tea bags – 53 per cent 
  3. Texting a family member to let them know that you ‘landed safely’ – 48 per cent 
  4. Only being able to say ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ in the local language – 43 per cent 
  5. Queuing patiently at the gate – 39 per cent 
  6. Having a designated wallet for your holiday documents – 38 per cent 
  7. Feeling nervous at security – 33 per cent 
  8. Packing two weeks before the trip – 32 per cent 
  9. Apologising profusely to the passenger next to you when you need the loo – 30 per cent 
  10. Enjoying a full English at the airport – 27 per cent 
  11. Declaring loudly ‘feel that heat’ as soon as you step off the plane – 27 per cent 
  12. Despite wearing factor 50 you still have a burnt forehead – 25 per cent 
  13. Checking if everyone has been to the loo before boarding the plane – 25 per cent 
  14. Organising a dedicated holiday WhatsApp group – 19 per cent 
  15. The urge to get off the plane as quickly as possible – 19 per cent 
  16. Battling to find the best place to pick up your bags from the luggage belt – 18 per cent 
  17. Taking poolside selfies with the caption ‘never coming home’ – 14 per cent 
  18. Packing a jar of Marmite – 12 per cent 
  19. Being obsessed with positioning the parasol above your lounger – 12 per cent 
  20. Ending up running for the gate every time – 11 per cent 

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