According to a ranking by the holiday portal Holidu, Switzerland is ranked last in terms of hospitality among the 25 most popular holiday countries in Europe. There are prejudices against the Swiss, one of which is that they are not the kindest people in the world. While prejudices are often baseless, there may be some truth to this cliché.
The ranking evaluated each country based on seven criteria: the number of tourist visits, knowledge of English, family friendliness, helpfulness, quality of taxi services, main tourist attractions, and number of pickpockets.
Despite the low level of English, Spain has achieved the best overall score in terms of being the most welcoming country in Europe, with around 72 million foreign tourists visiting every year. The ranking shows that Spain excels in its taxi service and particularly friendly and helpful locals.
Swiss Helpfulness Leaves Much to Be Desired
Above all, the Swiss lack helpfulness; only 40% of those surveyed have helped a foreigner in the past year. In addition, according to the study, the Swiss taxi service is the worst of all the countries evaluated. According to Holidu, Swiss knowledge of English is also considered low.
However, Switzerland scores points in one category: family-friendly accommodation. Foreign tourists with children are much better received here than in the neighboring German-speaking countries of Germany and Austria.
However, the winner in the "families" category is Italy. Experts say families here enjoy a "warm and welcoming atmosphere" that translates into "child-friendly facilities, cultural activities, and a relaxed attitude towards the little ones."
Albania Has the Fewest Pickpockets
Pickpocketing is a significant problem that can spoil a vacation. If you're traveling to Sweden, you should be extra cautious about keeping your belongings safe, as the country has the highest rate of pickpocketing in the world. According to police statistics, there were approximately 2000 cases of pickpocketing per 100,000 inhabitants in Sweden last year. On the other hand, if you're visiting Albania, the Czech Republic, or Turkey, you can breathe a little easier, as these countries have the fewest incidents of pickpocketing, with less than 250 reported cases per 100,000 people.
Germany and Austria Are in a Better Position
Germany (ranked 9th) and Austria (ranked 8th) have a significantly higher ranking than Switzerland. For instance, in Austria, the level of English proficiency appears to be higher, and taxi drivers are especially friendly. Meanwhile, France is praised for its English proficiency level, although it is ranked 12th.
A Survey of Swiss Guests Yields a Different Result
A representative from Switzerland Tourism disputes the previous statement and cites their own data. The Tourismus Monitor Schweiz, the largest survey of Swiss tourism guests, reveals that over 80% of respondents worldwide expressed high satisfaction with hospitality in Switzerland in 2017. Interestingly, the survey also found that Swiss nationals are more critical of their country's hospitality than foreign tourists. 81.5% of Swiss visitors reported being satisfied with hospitality in their own country, while 84.9% of foreign tourists reported being satisfied.