NEW YORK, N.Y. – It’s human nature to rely on personal experience to develop – correctly or not — a sense of which countries are home to foul or fair tempered folks. RewardExpert – a free service that helps users take full advantage of credit card and travel rewards – released its ranking of The World’s Grumpiest and Happiest Travelers. Earlier in this year, RewardExpert conducted a data-based analysis to determine which U.S. states were home to the grumpiest travelers, and in this report RewardExpert widened the lens to examine the dispositions of travelers from across the globe.
To determine the relative “grumpiness” or “happiness” of a country’s residents, the report used a dataset of nearly 3.5 million reviews for over 13,000 hotels spanning 70 countries made by reviewers hailing from 83 different nations.
“We can’t help making snap judgements about groups of people based on our experiences or stories we’ve heard,” says RewardExpert co-founder Vlad Tyschuk. “Some people may perceive the French to be lofty, the Germans to be stern, or the Japanese to be meticulous. But setting all subjectivity aside, we wanted to determine which countries’ residents are the most fair or foul natured based on the numbers.”
The report found the three countries with happiest travelers are:
1. Russia – Five-star reviews left by Russians made up an impressively high 46.16 percent of 70,775 reviews, but this alone would only have had Russia ranked sixth place. What puts Russia over the top is the fact that it ranked dead last for grumpy, one and two-star reviews, with a shockingly low 4.99 percent of reviews that rated their stay one or two stars.
2. Serbia – Serbians are the second happiest international tourists in the world, and their rank is due much more to the low incidence of one- and two-star reviews: a trifling 7.10 percent of Serbians’ reviews.
3. Lebanon – Lebanon ranks third, overall, for being home to happy international tourists. The percentage of reviews in the “happy” subset of Lebanese tourists is 45.69 percent, while only 7.8 percent of reviews belonged to the “grumpy” subset.
The three countries home to the grumpiest travelers are:
1. Spain – Spain may have a reputation for being a relaxed country and culture, but this apparently stops at the country’s border. Spaniards abroad are impressively ornery: not only are they fourth most likely to leave one- and two-star reviews (11.73 percent), they are the fifth least likely to leave a five-star review.
2. Ireland – It would seem that the luck of the Irish does not extend to international travel accommodations. Tourists hailing from the Emerald Isle are the most likely to leave one and two-star reviews of hotels abroad, taking second place on our grumpiest tourists list with 11.97 percent of 53,429 reviews being one or two stars.
3. Iceland – The disposition of Icelandic travelers is about as sunny as Iceland is: tourists from Iceland write grumpy reviews at a rate higher than tourists from all but six other countries, which makes up 11.13 percent of all reviews from natives of the island country.
“To determine our ranking, the data set of nearly 3.5 million hotel reviews was divided into subsets according to the number of stars, on a one- to five-star scale,” says Tyschuk. “The subset of one or two-star reviews indicated ‘grumpiness,’ whereas the subset of reviews with five-star ratings measured raw ‘happiness.’ An average was calculated of these two, as a percentage of all reviews by visitors from each country of origin, in order to rank them on a scale from grumpy to happy.”
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