Deservedly or not, Chinese tourists have a reputation for being rude, boorish and dirty.
And now Switzerland, which is famous for taking pride in being scrupulously clean, is doing its best to teach new visitors a lesson in Western toilet etiquette.
A series of signs – apparently aimed at visitors from Southeast Asia and the Middle East – has appeared on trains in the popular tourist destination of Mount Rigi in the Swiss Alps.
They explain how one should sit on a loo seat, rather than squat; and throw toilet paper into the lavatory, rather than into the bin.
“It happens that guests mount on the toilet seats to do their business – and sometimes they don’t know where to put the [toilet] paper,” Roger Joss, director of marketing for the railway told 20 Minuten newspaper.
However, visitors from Korea and China interviewed by the paper said the campaign was unnecessary as they already knew how to use the facilities correctly.
One said signposting everything was a typically Swiss habit.
They may well ‘pooh pooh’ the strategy – but Marcel Furer, head of the regional tourist office, said they have reason for their actions.
He said: “Tourists from the Gulf region or Asian countries are not very aware of our way of living. “It’s happened that people relieve themselves in the shower rather than in the toilet.”
We are trying so hard to understand sign language here – because this news is UNBELIEVABLE !