Tourist meltdowns

In a trademark irreverent look at “popular” tourist destinations, Gadling has come up with some “overrated tourist traps.” Most travelers couldn’t agree more. NYC, one tourist destination that delivers most bang for the buck has its share of pet peeves – deli food markets and their increasingly assembly line options catering to a busy office crowd, small movie theatres, garbage-strewn “local” neighborhoods, anytime rush hour traffic, holiday shopping crowds , MTA weekend service, vehicle exhaust-mixed sidewalk cafe menus, hole-in-the-wall takeout eateries and smoke-spewing peanut vendors at Times Sq. Next door neighbor New Jersey has two of America’s least unremarkable attractions – Atlantic city and Six Flags. The former leaves you cold while the latter’s wild-life safari boasts the most wild animals you never see!

As Gadling correctly observes, “worthless trinket” shops and cheesy souvenirs are the worst aspect of travel anywhere. As a country, we are pretty liberal about merchandising landmarks and national institutions. The US flag appears on swimsuits and socks and the Empire State building graces everything from coffee mugs to carpets. Quality doesn’t seem to matter either. The cheapening of world-famous landmarks and national treasures needs to stop! Other countries observe guidelines about what can go where!

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Vijay Dandapani

Co-founder and president of a New York based hotel company for 24 years. Grew the firm to five hotels in Manhattan and also developed a greenfield project at MacArthur airport, New York. Speaker at numerous prestigious forums including Economy Hotels World Asia, Lodging Conference, NYU, Columbia University Real Estate Roundtable, Baruch College's Zicklin School and ALIS. President and ceo of New York City Hotel Association since January 2017.

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