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Hats and Traveling to Australia in a few years, how to not be "that tourist"

Historyteach24

Call Me a Cab
Messages
2,447
Location
Huntington, WV
Hey guys! Odd idea for a post, but my wife and I were having a discussion about our trip to Australia which will be years from now. I was talking about all the things I wanted to see like going to a Queensland Reds rugby match or maybe having a guided tour of the outback and I started talking about how it will be nice to shop for Akubras and wear my Akubras there. She just rolled her eyes and said "dont be that guy" like I would be the guy in Hawaii wearing a floral shirt or something. What is the opinion on that type of travel? Embrace it and wear the hell out of my Akubras or would I obviously be that American who wants to dress like an Aussie?
 
Messages
15,259
Location
Arlington, Virginia
I went to Australia last year, didn't bring a hat, because I planned on buying a Campdraft from Everything Australian. I wore that hat most of the trip (I was there for 3 weeks). I did not feel like I got any unusual looks or judgments. Your accent will give you away first. Plus, I didn't have to worry about two hats on the plane trip back. Now I have a CD with some true experience from it's homeland. :D
 

tommyK

One Too Many
Messages
1,789
Location
Berwick, PA
How could you go all the way there and not buy an Akubra? Not to mention they are cheaper than most vintage options.

There is a part of me that says you should wear a vintage Open Road there to show them the difference. I don't mean in a bragging yankee "Let me show you how it's done" kind of way. Just a "this is our version of this hat" kind of comparison.
 

Fed in a Fedora

Practically Family
Messages
738
Location
Dixie, USA
I would only have one hat on an extended trip and then wear it almost continually. When I was in Australia and New Zealand for a few weeks, I wore a tan slouch hat and was happy to be a tourist. Wore the same hat during a dive trip in Palau as well. I cared as much there as I do here about the opinions of others regarding my head wear. Having little hair and having experienced a lot of sun exposure, I want my head protected; I like my hats; and I want my travel companions to be able to spot me if/when separated.

You should also understand that the moment you say anything, you will immediately make it clear that you are an American tourist. We may have some words in common, but we do not pronounce or use those words in the same way. I watched my wife as she was trying to get directions to our hotel room - the result would have been great sitcom footage. Lift, left and elevator were all blended into total confusion.

And several of my floral shirts were purchased in Hawaii and Saipan. I did wear them there. I worked and lived in the islands for a couple of years and found that the shirts were comfortable and pleasing island wear. We actually had the option of wearing this clothing for work when not required to wear court clothes. My friend who has lived in Hawaii for many years also wore them on a daily basis because they are a functional clothing option for the situation. Upon being returned to the mainland, I put these nice shirts in a closet and rarely wear them, but the hats are still in daily use.

On the other hand, maybe I am that guy. :)

Fed
 

Historyteach24

Call Me a Cab
Messages
2,447
Location
Huntington, WV
I would only have one hat on an extended trip and then wear it almost continually. When I was in Australia and New Zealand for a few weeks, I wore a tan slouch hat and was happy to be a tourist. Wore the same hat during a dive trip in Palau as well. I cared as much there as I do here about the opinions of others regarding my head wear. Having little hair and having experienced a lot of sun exposure, I want my head protected; I like my hats; and I want my travel companions to be able to spot me if/when separated.

You should also understand that the moment you say anything, you will immediately make it clear that you are an American tourist. We may have some words in common, but we do not pronounce or use those words in the same way. I watched my wife as she was trying to get directions to our hotel room - the result would have been great sitcom footage. Lift, left and elevator were all blended into total confusion.

And several of my floral shirts were purchased in Hawaii and Saipan. I did wear them there. I worked and lived in the islands for a couple of years and found that the shirts were comfortable and pleasing island wear. We actually had the option of wearing this clothing for work when not required to wear court clothes. My friend who has lived in Hawaii for many years also wore them on a daily basis because they are a functional clothing option for the situation. Upon being returned to the mainland, I put these nice shirts in a closet and rarely wear them, but the hats are still in daily use.

On the other hand, maybe I am that guy. :)

Fed

Awesome! I didn't mean that I wouldn't wear a hat or let opinions stop me from wearing a hat, but with being on multiple planes for almost 20 hrs and going all the way there I wanted to wear an Akubra and take in the culture as much as I could. I guess I can tell my wife I was right this time..... that will go over well :(
 

Fed in a Fedora

Practically Family
Messages
738
Location
Dixie, USA
Your concern about the hat during long flights is a very good one. If placed in overhead bins, a hat will get crushed by people who do not care about your hat. If in your lap, drinks/food will be spilled on them. They are a pain when going through security and hat cases take up a lot of valuable carry-on space. I am pretty tall, so my hat is above the seat back and I spend a lot of time with it tipped forward - either watching TV or snoozing. This is why I have one hat and wear it on my head for the entire process.

As to purchasing an Akubra while there, why not have them ship it home for you? Will likely be cheaper than the extra baggage fees during your multiple flights home.

I do hope that you enjoy your trip.

Fed
 

ronssmith

New in Town
Messages
14
Location
Detroit
I went to Sydney in March 2016 for the second celebration of the wedding of my son and daughter-in-law with her large family.
One of my goals was to buy an Akubra there. Her father took me to the Strand Hatter where I purchased my Coober Pedy (see my avatar), which I proceeded to wear continuously for the remainder of the trip, including the wedding party. While absolutely no one mistook me for Australian, I wasn't thrown out of any places either. I wore it home on the plane, and waited until everyone had placed their things in the overhead before making room for it on top of my back pack.
 

Zoukatron

One of the Regulars
Messages
141
Location
London, UK
I think the way to be "that tourist" would more likely be to wear a leather Barmah or something like that. So few tourists wear Akubras (I've spent a fair amount of time in the Outback, both with tour groups and doing research work) and I've seen plenty of locals wearing Akubras but never tourists.
 

scottyrocks

I'll Lock Up
Messages
9,100
Location
Isle of Langerhan, NY
I don't understand the 'that guy' comment. People in Australia wear Akubras. Either wearing or buying one there shouldn't be anything out of the ordinary.

When I have to get on a plane, I take one fedora with me, on my head, as one always is. On the plane, I usually keep it in the crook of my lower legs if I am eating, and/or sort of in my lap, or on the fold-down tray, when I'm not. Never been a problem.

When I travel by car I can take a second or third hat and just throw them (on top of stuff) in the back seat.
 

Zoukatron

One of the Regulars
Messages
141
Location
London, UK
I don't understand the 'that guy' comment. People in Australia wear Akubras. Either wearing or buying one there shouldn't be anything out of the ordinary.

I do understand it, though I think people who are more to view the wearing of the hat somewhat askance are more likely to be non-Australians. It's like when I've worn kimono at Japanese events - a lot of Europeans will look at me weirdly, but the Japanese people I meet love it.
 
Messages
16,652
Location
Central California
Unless your a sociopath, we all care about what others think in some way. We all get embarrassed at times, and we all seek approval at some level. Some keep a good balance and are confident and self-assured while still feeling the need to conform on important matters. It's the sociology of the human race and those who pretend to not care at all about the thoughts or opinions of others are usually just not aware of how they are molded by society or how they have conformed.

That out of the way, when I travel abroad I don't mind the Americans who dress differently. I cringe when my countrymen are too loud, judgmental, arrogant, or closed minded. If you're warm, open, friendly, smile, and show genuine interest and appreciation when traveling no one will care about your hat, and as a bonus you will keep the sun off your skin and maybe save your life.

I hope you've taken the trip by now, this is a very old thread.
 

Nathaniel Finley

A-List Customer
Messages
328
Location
World wide
Hey guys! Odd idea for a post, but my wife and I were having a discussion about our trip to Australia which will be years from now. I was talking about all the things I wanted to see like going to a Queensland Reds rugby match or maybe having a guided tour of the outback and I started talking about how it will be nice to shop for Akubras and wear my Akubras there. She just rolled her eyes and said "dont be that guy" like I would be the guy in Hawaii wearing a floral shirt or something. What is the opinion on that type of travel? Embrace it and wear the hell out of my Akubras or would I obviously be that American who wants to dress like an Aussie?

I’m in Melbourne now. Australians like to wear felt hats, and I see mostly Akubras. They like their Akubras and you won’t be out of place in one here whatsoever. On the contrary, I feel conspicuous in my Stetson.

When I travel on planes (which I do a lot), I put my hat on top of my luggage in the overhead bin. There’s usually enough room and I’ve never had one squashed. I also try to position the luggage as close to the rear of the bin as possible so when the plane decelerates on landing it won’t shift and misplace the hat on top of it.

Have fun, Aus is really, really fantastic. THis is my fourth time here!
 

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