Whether it's for the "pre-Ramadan Rush"  as some have taken to calling it, or for the summer high season, Arabs love to flock to the European capitals and shores for shopping, spending and even drinking-splurges or gambling-sprees. All manner of sin and excess banned and shunned from their home-lives become fair-game while abroad.
It's summertime, and distinctly for Muslim world Arabs, that time of the year just before the Ramadan stay-at-home family time  kicks in. Which signals just one thing for these restive Arabs who are itching to squeeze some fun and games in before they must resume best behavior in respect of the Holy Month of Ramadan - it's holiday time! Arabs are scrambling abroad for a nice spot of spending, spinning their wheels, and partying from Beirut to Europe. They come for some light (though heavy on the expenses) relief from their own intensely hot climate, and some partying before the holy season of Ramadan and abstenance and austerity  take hold.
Arabs make bad tourists?
Tis the season to be disgraceful! No we're not talking about British tourists abroad this time , but still harping on Arabs and their unique bad habits, as observed from the vantage of the region that renders these editors quite fit to judge. Inspired by the notion of Arabs holidaying abroad, we thought fitting to take a look at Arabs touristic habits from Gulf to Levant.
While foreign, often recessed, markets are distinctly propped up by, specifically, Gulf lavish custom, this does not prevent benefactors from observing their less-than-desirable behavior and taking a grim view. From London to Beirut, Arab visitors leave their trail of disgrace, and with it, more than a few unimpressed foreigners. But it's not just Gulf tourists  we want to talk about. Other Middle Easterners are equally culpable of giving Arabs a bad name abroad. From those North African Arabs who behave badly in France where they blemish the virtuous side of Arabs, to the Levant travellers who carry their stubborn lawless natures off to the West and attract attention for all the wrong reasons.
These tourists soak up more in purchases & forbidden pleasures than culture & exhibitions. In Lebanon "where the women are bomb" as rap-artist Pitbull  puts it, you'll find Gulfis disgracing themselves by assuming all women are hookers at their disposal.
While happy to take their forthcoming cash, retailers and hospitality workers on the receiving end still have much to grumble about: "Dealing with Gulf Arabs is unlike dealing with anyone else,” said one exasperated luxury hotel employee. “We can’t check them out before four, because they don’t get up before then. Cleaning up after them is a nightmare. They spill drinks, scratch the floor, and ruin the furniture." Thinking nothing of splashing out the odd $5,000 a day during a given shopping trip, while the credit crunch and Euro-crisis leave others stupified, these Arab visitors snub London's (unaffordable for some Britons) black cabs in favor of their own private super-mobils. But they neglect to pay their road fines, leaving behind an additional paper-trail of unpaid fines.
London and Paris are just a couple of the Gulfi playgrounds ; Beirut and other Middle Eastern spots, Egypt, Syria and Morocco, more liberal than their own peninsula, get a look-in too. They often travel with their retinue of maids.
Maybe when all's said and done, Busta Rhymes' song "Arab Money" captures it best.
"We getting Arab money... Seven star hotels, Maybach, movies.. camel toe, Gucci...Sitting in casinos while I'm gambling with Arafat...Money long, watch me purchase pieces of the Almanac..In Dubai 20 million on a villa loft. I got Middle East women and Middle East bread. I got oil well money, in the desert playing golf...Go chase short stack sheiki with a Louis scarf".
We hate to take the fun and Arab-bashing out of this exercise delivered from the heartland of the region, but it might be worth mentioning that while these Arabs live up the high life some of their fellow denizens are those same hungry people protesting, who certainly don’t have the luxury to leave their lesser kingdoms.
What do you think? Do Arabs make embarrassing tourists abroad? Do you have any stories to share - use the space below.