"Language barriers" Budapest Local Custom Tip by Laura_Mexico
Budapest Local Customs: 231 reviews and 279 photos
Even though Budapest is becoming a very touristic city, most people aren't well trained to provide a good service to the tourists.
We found out that car drivers are very kind and will always stop for you to cross the street, but cyclists are a nightmare and there are MANY of them. They aren't nearly as careful, and sometimes the sidewalk isn't enough for both pedestrians and cyclists so you have to walk on the bike lanes which I know isn't the right thing to do but sometimes there's no choice.
In regards to the language, I was very frustrated to see that not even people at the information desks or tourist offices spoke English well enough to explain you basic things -- let alone clerks at metro stations, supermarkets, etc. So when you tried to get them to express themselves better they would also get frustrated and behave rather unhelpfully. I understand their feelings but it is really irritating and disappointing for us visitors to face this, especially when we're visiting the town for the first time and are clueless and need some orientation. Sometimes I even preferred figuring out whatever on my own than asking for help. It seems that people in stores are the ones who speak the best English (in order to try to sell you stuff, of course) and even in this case their knowledge was very limited. Their language is very special and not similar to anything I know, so I don't think they should expect everyone to speak Hungarian when visiting Budapest.... I really think they should make a bigger effort to deal with the tourists and not make them feel lost and helpless, as I did.
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