1. They try to walk into the Salt Lake City temple.
Tourists are accustomed to touring cathedrals all over the world. When they get to Salt Lake, they’re somewhat shocked that they can’t just waltz in with their cameras and phones. Luckily, the missionaries at Temple Square do a pretty good job of explaining.
2. They stop in the middle of the hiking trail to snap a pic.
Try to hike one of the popular trails in Zion national park during the tourist season, and you might find yourself bumping into the guy in front of you who abruptly stops to take a pic of the Watchman or another stunning natural wonder. Take a deep breath, and try to remember that you probably do the same thing when you’re a tourist elsewhere.
3. Tourists get confused when you give them an address.
When you tell them to go to 300 South and 400 East, they look at you like you’re crazy. Utahns know that the block system makes perfect sense, but people in the rest of the country do it the hard way, so the ease of our system puts them in a panic.
4. People visiting from out of state drive the speed limit.
Crazy, right? In some states, residents actually drive the posted speed limit. You know you’re dealing with a tourist when you nearly rear end a rental car traveling 60 mph on the freeway.
5. They’re wearing flip-flops on the hiking trail.
Utahns know that a 5-mile hike requires hiking shoes (or at least comfortable shoes with good tread). Tourists think they can wear the same shoes that they wear at the pool.
6. Tourists stop to rest every few minutes while walking around Park City.
Utah’s elevation is much higher than many parts of the country, so tourists coming here find themselves out of breath a lot, especially when walking around our resorts, or hiking in the mountains.
7. Visitors are shocked when they see our mountains.
Of course, many other states have impressive mountain ranges. However, most don’t have them towering over their capital cities! When tourists fly into the Salt Lake International Airport, they’re impressed with the size and beauty of our mountains...and their proximity to Salt Lake.
8. Tourists can’t get over our views.
The next time you’re at Bryce National Park, or Dead Horse Point State Park, or any of our scenic overlooks, do some people-watching. You’ll instantly spot the tourists, because they’re going on and on about how VAST it is here. They’re right - our vistas are pretty amazing.
9. They wrinkle their noses over fry sauce.
Many Utahns can’t imagine eating fries without it, but it sounds pretty gross to tourists. The ones willing to try it are often converted.
10. Tourists get confused about our liquor laws.
We’re not the only state with confusing liquor laws, but Utah’s laws frequently confuse tourists. They’re shocked that they can’t order cocktails or beer before they order their food, and that they can’t get a sidecar.
11. They arrive in buses.
When you see the big tour buses pull up to the overlook, or you see them parked at the Denny’s, you know the tourists have arrived. Yes, that means you’re about to deal with large crowds of people, but try to remember that they bring much-needed tourist revenue to our state.
We’re incredibly lucky to live in a place where we’re surrounded by so much natural beauty…let’s look forward to sharing it with those who come to Utah this year. How can you tell the tourists from the locals?