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(Get out, again)
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:: I'd agree that "nearby" isn't perfect for remote places, but I think most people will understand that it's there as a standard heading, and that the meaning is "here are some of the closest places to visit", even if those places might be a few hundred miles away. -- [[User:Wrh2|Ryan]] • ([[User talk:Wrh2|talk]]) • 17:10, 2 July 2012 (EDT)
 
:: I'd agree that "nearby" isn't perfect for remote places, but I think most people will understand that it's there as a standard heading, and that the meaning is "here are some of the closest places to visit", even if those places might be a few hundred miles away. -- [[User:Wrh2|Ryan]] • ([[User talk:Wrh2|talk]]) • 17:10, 2 July 2012 (EDT)
  
::: I'm not sure I agree. If "Nearby" is meant to include places a few hundred miles away, it seems almost as confusing as our current "Get out" heading. But my major stumbling block (which I didn't explain well the first time) is I don't think "nearby" is the same as "go next". ''Nearby'', to me, implies places that are close by and could be destinations in their own right or a day trip. ''Go next'' would be common next stops on a trip where a traveller would be likely to stop and stay a night. I'm not 100% sure what the intent of "Get out" is, but "go next" is closer to what I think it means than "nearby".
+
::: I'm not sure I agree. If "Nearby" is meant to include places a few hundred miles away, it seems almost as confusing as our current "Get out" heading. But my major stumbling block (which I didn't explain well the first time) is I don't think "nearby" is the same as "go next". ''Nearby'', to me, implies places that are close by and likely day trips (although could be destinations in their own right). ''Go next'' would be common next stops on a trip where a traveller would be likely to stop and stay a night. I'm not 100% sure what the intent of "Get out" is, but "go next" is closer to what I think it means than "nearby".
  
 
::: Not sure how familiar people are with the [[Vancouver]] area, but using it as an example, ''Nearby'' places would be [[Richmond (British Columbia)]] and the [[Fraser Valley]], but ''Go next'' destinations would be [[Seattle]] and the [[Okanagan]]. Places like [[Victoria (British Columbia)|Victoria]] and [[Whistler]] could be either Nearby or Go next. -[[User:Shaund|Shaund]] 17:47, 2 July 2012 (EDT)
 
::: Not sure how familiar people are with the [[Vancouver]] area, but using it as an example, ''Nearby'' places would be [[Richmond (British Columbia)]] and the [[Fraser Valley]], but ''Go next'' destinations would be [[Seattle]] and the [[Okanagan]]. Places like [[Victoria (British Columbia)|Victoria]] and [[Whistler]] could be either Nearby or Go next. -[[User:Shaund|Shaund]] 17:47, 2 July 2012 (EDT)

Revision as of 21:54, 2 July 2012

Contents

Do? Eat? Verb tense?

Only curious: Why don't we use Eating, Seeing, Understanding, etc. instead of Eat, See, Understand, etc.?

Lesseeee... We actually did use the participial form for a while, but we changed it to the present tense (or imperative, take your pick) because they're shorter and punchier. --Evan 11:52, 20 May 2004 (EDT)
I would prefer the present continuous form also. In fact, there was someone on the Madrid page that changed the headings to something that I would consider more meaningful to the first time visitor. His edits can be found on this version of the page. I would certainly prefer the templates changed to reflect those sort of headings. --Colin Angus Mackay 02:29, 24 Jun 2005 (EDT)
There's a lot to be said for short and punchy. On the other hand, the Get out header seems to generate the most problems -- see Wikitravel talk:Big city article template for an active discussion of this. (I also don't like Drink because it means more than just places that service beverages.). -- Colin 03:19, 24 Jun 2005 (EDT)
I'm not into the change for a couple of reasons, firstly I just don't like the present participle form as a headline. I read the short form of the verb as imperative and I like that. The real reason not to use the Madrid example above for our templates though is that those headlines were taken directly from what Lonely Planet uses, and while they make excellent guides I don't want to be seen as copying them in any way. Wikitravel should have its own proper style and not borrow that of any other guide.
I do however see that Get out has been causing problems, and so I would like to consider switching to Get away, and then perhaps switch Drink to Get out maybe... -- Mark 03:24, 24 Jun 2005 (EDT)
I like Picapica's headers, but a) I don't think they're sufficiently better than the ones we have now to warrant a change, and b) I am extremely averse to copying anything from other travel guides -- styles, formats, etc. --Evan 10:53, 24 Jun 2005 (EDT)
I would still prefer to change the headings to something more meaningful. The current, imperative, form seems to much like a drill instructor barking commands. How about something like this: How to get in, What to see, What to do, Where to eat, Where to sleep, etc.
Anyway, at very least could we update the "Get Out" heading? I thought about "Get Away", but to me that is a statement of disbelief. How about "Day Out"? According to the template guide it is for "Other nearby destination suggestions or day-trip ideas" which is certainly what I've been using when I've added anything to the "Get Out" section. --Colin Angus Mackay 15:01, 24 Jun 2005 (EDT)
Here's the description: Wikitravel:Big city article template#Get out. I think it's for any exit info.
As for your suggested headers: Eat doesn't just list where to eat, but what to eat, and when to do it. Same goes for most of the other headers. Having very general headers gives us some flexibility. --Evan 16:14, 24 Jun 2005 (EDT)
Yes, I've read the description. It says don't repeat "Get In", but exit information is usually just the reverse of Get In so the same information applies but in the opposite direction. However, my main point was that the current headings are not actually that great. The more I think about it, the less and less I like the current headings. I don't want to be told what to do (which is what the imperative verb tense's function is) I want to be doing things of my choosing.
To make it clear, my problem with the headings is that the imperative tense makes it sound like an army drill instructor issuing commands rather than a travel guide suggesting ideas. --Colin Angus Mackay 18:23, 24 Jun 2005 (EDT)
It is bad English. Is this the English version or the Cave-man version?
--Terry 20:40, 9 Aug 2005 (EDT)
I agree. As a native English speaker (from the UK), 'Get In' is definitely bad English - you can't 'get in' a country or a city. Perhaps 'get there' or 'getting there' would be a better section heading. In fact, the phrase 'get in' is a slang celebratory expression in modern UK English (e.g. "Arsenal beat Man United. Yes! Get in!").
--Anon 00:30, 17 Jul 2006 (EDT)
"Get in" is a commonly-used synonym for "arrive". "I just got in to London late last night." "Oh really? What time did you get in?" See http://www.m-w.com/dictionary/get%20in . --Evan 19:58, 16 July 2006 (EDT)
I don't think there are rules in English for how you title chapter and page section headings. Long latinate words aren't always "better" English; short saxon words aren't always worse. --Evan 10:19, 23 Aug 2005 (EDT)

Short + Fast + Clear = What Your Readers Want: this is the Web. Short clear headings that read at a glance are best for this material. Fancy language that slows the reader down is NOT what your readers want. Edit with your audience in mind. Be brief and keep navigation (headings are navigation) *short* and *clear*. The short headings are right. Look around the Web and observe what works. Thanks for your generous writing and ruthless purpose driven editing :-).

We need suggested itineraries

(Copying from Wikitravel:Travellers' pub#We need suggested itineraries -- Ravikiran 09:42, 15 Sep 2005 (EDT))

Thought: Wikitravel should be a useful guide for someone who wants to look up a country, and answer the question, "What should I DO AND SEE if I travel there?" Right now, the information on countries and regions/states is somewhat dry doesn't live up to this. Moreover, the templates don't have a section where you would write about this.

My suggestion: We should add to the templates for countries and regions a section "Suggested Itineraries". As usual, anyone could add to this section. So you might see a number of links for different users' suggestions, like:

- <link>2 week itinerary</link>: Travel from Cochin to Trivandrum, taking in hill stations and backwaters along the way. - <link>3 days on Mt Rainier</link>: A 3-day, 2-night hike on Mt Rainier that takes you away from the crowds. - etc.

I'm sure there are more things to consider in implementing this... for example, how do we add such a section to all the existing countries and states? It won't get added by luck. Thoughts? -- Jeremy_S

Do you mean like this? --Ravikiran 14:10, 11 Sep 2005 (EDT)
Exactly! That's beautiful. My concern is that I don't think such a thing will automatically spread unless there's some encouragement. E.g. Including "Itineraries" in the templates, and actually updating many of the existing travel pages to have such a section (even if it's blank). Jeremy_S 15 Sept 2005
I agree! This is a great idea. This kind of info is hugely helpful and remarkably scarce. 15 Sep 2005
There is a section for See and Do in region articles, which might also help. --Evan 09:28, 15 Sep 2005 (EDT)
I plunged forward and added an "Itineraries" subheading to the Region template. Revisions welcome. Jpatokal 21:53, 20 Sep 2005 (EDT)
I'm not crazy about this, but the way I want to do it (with metadata markup) isn't implemented yet. So I'll reserve my objections until such time as I get Turtle markup working on Wikitravel. However, it would be great if instead of "Itineraries" we used a verbal form for the section. Lastly, wouldn't this work well in "Get around"? --Evan 09:23, 21 Sep 2005 (EDT)
Well, if the articles are called itineraries, it would rather obfuscatory to use any other term in the section heading. IMHO Get around would be entirely the wrong place, because itineraries aren't about how to get around, they're about what to see and do. Jpatokal 10:19, 21 Sep 2005 (EDT)
I'm going by Wikitravel:Itineraries. I think you're trying to describe what Three days in Singapore is about. That's a pretty interesting article, and I think there's a lot of value in it. I don't think it fits the dictionary definition of "itinerary" (a description of a route with destinations and timetable), though. Maybe we can give it another name? Or maybe it just makes sense to call them both by the same name. Anyways, putting a "See also" under the "Understand" or even the intro would be pretty good. Sorry, but I'm a big fan of parallelism and "Itineraries" just doesn't fit well.
I think that the question we're trying to answer (what should I do and see while in Country X or Region Y?) is already covered by having "See" and "Do" sections at the region level. This is kind of a "Top 10" list for a region. (See the examples in the template.) I think that could be easily generalized for the country guides, too. But taking those suggestions and linearizing them ("First go to A, then go to B, then go to C") does make sense as an additional article. --Evan 10:52, 21 Sep 2005 (EDT)
Actually, Three days in Singapore (as well as its evil cohorts One day in Tokyo and One day in Bangkok) fit the definition "a route with destinations and a timetable" perfectly, it's just that a 'destination' here is more granular (single attractions) than Wikitravel's usual definition (a place to sleep). Come to think of it, for all three you could argue that they're itineraries even in the strict (Wikitravel) sense, as they all describe trips through districts of huge cities and thus different destinations... Jpatokal 12:21, 21 Sep 2005 (EDT)
So do we go ahead with Itenaries in a template? Rehanyarkhan 10:13, 19 March 2006 (EST)

Contact section in every city template?

I just realized something today... shouldn't the Contact section be in every city's template? The reason I say that is because we're supposed to be listing all of phone as you would dial them locally. The problem with that, though, is what if I'm travelling from outside of the local area and would like to call ahead? If I'm only dealing with a printed version (or even the online version, because it would still be a pain), I won't know how to contact them!

If the contact section is in each city's template, there could be a quick sentence along the lines of:

The local area code is 229 and is not required for local calls.

Short, sweet and to the point. I sure would feel more comfortable trimming the area code off of phone numbers knowing this would always be there. -- Ilkirk 14:35, 22 Sep 2005 (EDT)

I haven't been keeping up with the phone number debates, but if I'm reading Wikitravel:Phone numbers correctly the area code should always be listed with the phone number, shouldn't it? I think it's just the country code that gets left off. If the policy is that the area code isn't listed, then personally I think the policy should be changed. -- Ryan 15:09, 22 Sep 2005 (EDT)
Oh. Wow. I totally didn't see that change... or I've misread it. Hmmmm... except I don't really remember seeing that exact policy - it may be that it isn't stated that way in the manual of style entries? I'll have to investigate further... and change a bunch of stuff! :( -- Ilkirk 15:40, 22 Sep 2005 (EDT)
As I read Wikitravel:Phone numbers, the country code is there. In the example, it is just the "1" for North America, but it is given.

Island is a region?

Which template should be used for islands? E.g. for Santorini, for Crete? --DenisYurkin 11:51, 28 Sep 2005 (EDT)

Well, if it is a country, use the country template. If it is small enough to be a city, use the city template. If it is large and has cities inside it, use the region template. Any specific reason you think islands would require special handling? - Ravikiran 11:59, 28 Sep 2005 (EDT)
Ravikiran is right. See Singapore and the Falkland Islands for exmamples of "country" islands, Maui for an example of a "region" island, and Saunders Island for a "small city" (*cough* four people live there *cough*) example. Basically, if the island has multiple cities & isn't its own country, use a region template. If there is only one city, use the city template. If none of those can be made to fit, plant a flag in it 'cause you've discovered something new. -- Wrh2 13:01, 28 Sep 2005 (EDT)
This is old, but I wanted to revive it. Shouldn't this point about islands specifically be stated on the How to add a page section? Especially since so many popular travel destinations are islands. Sailsetter 18:36, 23 March 2008 (EDT)

The best Wikitravel articles are too damn long

Moved to shared:Tech:Optionally split long guides into one page per section by User:Evan

External links

OK, I've been sitting on this one for a long time. I think we need to get rid of the External Links section. This is why:

  1. Probably over 50% of the edits I do on this site are rolling back external link additions. I think this is true for all of us who haunt the recent changes page. See an addition in the External Links section by an IP address and there's a 95% chance that it needs to be rolled back.
  2. People add unwanted links for 2 reasons:
    1. They are spammers and they see a place to spam
    2. They are well-meaning folks who have links to an external site and it appears that we want those. They think we want these links because the sections is called External Links.
  3. What we actually want is the official link to the tourism authority or what have you.
  4. According to Wikitravel:Where you can stick it the information on the tourism office goes in the Understand section-- why doesn't the link go there as well?

Looking over Wikitravel:External links I think this policy should be amended to stress that all external links need to be incorporated into the content-- i.e. be part of a travel listing. Leaving it open to "other links" just invites abuse and misunderstanding and nixing this heading is the first step to clarifying this issue. Comments please... Majnoona 21:18, 22 Nov 2005 (EST)

I agree that keeping the Official Sites is not worth the effort of maintaining the extlink section. (But I sure would like a place to stick the occasional up-to-date nightlife events guide exlink first). I think pretty much anyone should be able to google their way to the Official links if that's what they want, plus DMOZ already covers the official extlinks along with the unofficial ones. -- Colin 22:24, 22 Nov 2005 (EST)
I second the motion! I think the official sites should go into the Understand section because most of them are tourist promotion/information sites anyway. Besides thats where they belong anyway. -- Huttite 03:17, 23 Nov 2005 (EST)
Me too. But how do they go in Understand? A one-liner at the end? We can't really create a "Further reading" section either, because that'll turn into the next home of link spam. Jpatokal 03:28, 23 Nov 2005 (EST)
How about including them the same way we do for a hotel with a URL? It would basically be the listing for the tourism office including address, phone, email and official site. As for a nightlife guide, if we wanted to include one it could be part of the Drink section, incorporated into a paragraph about how to find shows and whatnot. Majnoona 09:46, 23 Nov 2005 (EST)
Count my support too. I'd say we insist that any link that conforms to policy should be worked into the text. That will discourage people casually adding a link and not adding any useful content --Ravikiran 13:04, 23 Nov 2005 (EST)
I think this idea has universal support. The only problem I see is that we have an awful lot of "External links" sections to re-incorporate into the Understand section. Unless there's some reason to wait any longer, I suggest someone plunge forward to change the templates. I think we can then discuss what to do with the existing sections. --Evan 11:53, 2 Dec 2005 (EST)
One question before anyone launches on this. Yes, there is a problem with spam links. But is it clear that removing the external links section solves it, or even lessens it? I've seen spam showing up in other sections of some articles I work on. Won't this plan just force people to embed more of the spam in those other sections? Think about it -- I'd just as soon have the spam all going to the same place (i.e., the external links section) so that it's at least easy to deal with.
Not trying to be a nuisance here, just wondering whether the plan will meet the need, to use 30-year-old debater language. :-) -- Bill-on-the-Hill 12:34, 2 Dec 2005 (EST)
Wha!? You want the solution to be actually applicable to the problem?!? That's crazy talk! B-)
Seriously, I don't think that the point here is anti-spam, really. It's that we've got this whole top-level section that's mis-labeled and should really only have 1-3 entries. The information we want there (links to official tourist sites) is much more appropriate for the Understand section. --Evan 14:21, 2 Dec 2005 (EST)
I agree that it might not make a huge impact on actual spammers, but I think it will cut out the unintentional spammers-- i.e. those people who think they are helping by doing a google search on a place and then adding links under external links.
If there's no real disagreement here, I'm going to go ahead and edit the template pages to reflect this. I think the transition will be a slow one, but better now than later. Majnoona 14:49, 4 Dec 2005 (EST)
I'm in favor - thanks for volunteering to take the plunge! -- Ryan 14:51, 4 Dec 2005 (EST)

Just a thought. Maybe we could make a an { {Official-site}} templeate, that would put in the "Other sites/languages" together with Wikipedia, etc. --elgaard 19:35, 9 Dec 2005 (EST)

I wonder how to re-incorportate the external links currently found in destinations that use the small city template i.e. have no Understand section. Even the "one-liner" solution doesn't quite seem to work there. Rmx 22:02, 19 Dec 2005 (EST)

Place for official links

So as a follow up, I'd like to suggest the following:

  1. Official destaintion site links appear after first mention of destaintion (see Clark for an example)
  2. Official tourisim office site link appears in the listing for Welcome center / visitors booth what have you (ie where you'd go for a map...)

Comments? I'm happy to plunge forward and make the changes to the templates as well as add notes to Wikitravel:External links and Wikitravel:Where to stick it. Majnoona 14:23, 25 Jan 2006 (EST)

It looks like several editors are already following this policy, so can it be officially added to Wikitravel:External links? I'm in favor, and no one has objected since Maj proposed making it official. -- Ryan 16:39, 31 Jan 2006 (EST)
I like it, I'm doing it... thanks Maj for suggesting this -- Xltel 16:43, 31 Jan 2006 (EST)

Maps

What about Maps? Should we encourage mapmaking?

Yes. See Wikitravel:Mapmaking Expedition. --Evan 20:40, 28 Dec 2005 (EST)

A general map for orientation is highly usefull in any travel guide article, notwithstanding that for finer detail maps can be best obtained locally when one arrives in a destination (often at arrival points such as train stations, bus stations or local tourism info centers).

So . . .

Copyright

Do copyright laws permit mapmaking using other maps as the source material (I think so)?

Absolutely. It's not possible to copyright information (X street crosses Y avenue). You can't copy a map outright, nor can you copy exactly the same data as on another map, but it's OK to use another map as a source. --Evan 20:40, 28 Dec 2005 (EST)
Some maps include deliberate traps to snare you into a copyright violation (see Trap street on Wikipedia). Do not copy any item, item labeling, or item position from a map that you cannot verify as completely factual. -- Colin 01:20, 29 Dec 2005 (EST)

Map Links

What about links to useful maps on other websites (at least where WikiTravel lacks useful maps)?

USE CASE: I put some Map Links on the Hangzhou page and someone else deleted all my 45 minutes worth of work finding useful maps on the Web and linking to them for Hangzhou - DISSAPPOINTING! Some community thought and guidance regarding maps would help.) Rogerhc 19:08, 28 Dec 2005 (EST)

We have a guideline called Wikitravel:external links. Our goals include creating tourist-style maps for travellers, and linking out to external maps hurts, and doesn't help, this goal. We have a Mapmaking Expedition to discuss how to create and publish maps. --Evan 20:37, 28 Dec 2005 (EST)
I'd be a little less absolute on this — even the best static Wikitravel map will never be able to match, say, kartta.hel.fi or www.streetdirectory.com.sg for dynamic address lookups and such, so IMHO these are good, handy extlinks (and in kartta.hel.fi's case it's an official city government-run site to boot). But random flat Googled maps don't qualify. Jpatokal 06:19, 29 Dec 2005 (EST)

Template Changes

How about adding {{isIn|Destination}}? And on a related note, do we still need the "Foo is in Bar" text since it will just appear below the breadcrumb anyway? Majnoona 13:50, 18 Jan 2006 (EST)

Yes, I think we do. A lot of places do not have the IsIn added when the article is started and this might also need to change over time. Also if a region article is still to be written or does not have an IsIn reference, all you get is the article and its IsIn parent in the breadcrumb. Then there is no guarentee that any printed or redistributed text will understand what an IsIn means, and may not be able to extract the data if all they have is the article text. Articles without internal links also show up as dead-end or orphan pages, indicating a lack of Wiki-interconnectedness. From a parent article this would also mean you could not find all the related article using the what links here utility. Finally having the full locality hierarchy in the beginning of the article at least forces people to think and put the link back to one article where the destination is linked from. I have come across a few new pages with just the template without the Place is in region introduction at the top. Faced with a blank template I immediately ask the question Where in the world is this Place? The template only says that every destination must have a link back to a parent article. This may be a bit redundant, but at least the introductory paragraph can be changed around to be more descriptive. One of the most frustrating things I find with other travel guides is the complete lack of location information. Almost everybody else who writes about or promotes tourist places always seems to assume that because you know the name of a destination, you know where it is in the world; as a result the location of many destinations is their best kept secret. As they say in the real estate business its location, location, location.... -- Huttite 17:16, 18 Jan 2006 (EST)
Wow. I agree with you many times now! Majnoona 19:14, 31 Jan 2006 (EST)

Airport Codes?

Swept in from the Travellers' pub:

I was just editing the Miami Beach entry and noted that neither local international airport was linked from its airport code, nor had any article at all. I would like to suggest that stub articles be added for at least all major international airports, as these definitely constitute places of interest to travelers.

In our guidelines for deciding what is an article, airports don't usually get articles because they are not destinations, and should be folded into the content of their containing city or region. Some airports are complex enough that they do get articles though. If you want to write an article about a particular airport, you might want to raise the issue at Wikitravel talk:What is an article? and generate a discussion about whether the airport really should have its own article. -- Colin 20:19, 23 Aug 2005 (EDT)

It would be nice to have a stub page on each airport, if only for the purpose looking at reverse links. I guess a search might accomplish the same purpose, though.

No, it seems like search doesn't accomplish the same purpose. Search for "IAH", and you get 0 hits. The hit you most want is Houston, which does include the string "IAH". The problem may be because the search software eliminates all words of 1-3 letters from its index because some, like "an" and "the", are too common to be helpful. See Wikitravel:Search_help for more information. JimDeLaHunt 20:19, 4 Jan 2006 (EST)

I propose creating redirects for each three-letter international airport code. The redirect points to 1. an article on that airport, where such an article exists; or 2. the article for the city to which that airport belongs. For instance, KIX would be a redirect to Kansai International Airport, while IAH would be a redirect to Houston. JimDeLaHunt 20:19, 4 Jan 2006 (EST)

I further propose some change to the search mechanism such that searches for airport codes give useful results that point you to information on that airport and its city. Creating the redirects for each code might be sufficient, but it might not. JimDeLaHunt 20:19, 4 Jan 2006 (EST)

I'd love to see the IATA (probably ICAO as well) airport code added to the Get In sections in a standardized way. Some places do not have an airport code at all. Other articles give directions to the airport but no airport name or code. Looking up airport codes is a crucial task when planning travel. It might be possible to refer to airports with a new tag and create a database on these to lookup articles that refer to a particular airport code.

Icons for kid-friendly attractions

Swept in from the Travellers' pub:

I really like how Fodor's has the little duck symbol next to kid-friendly attractions. Could we do the same thing? We could indicate recommendations (as mentioned above in "lists versus recommendations"), photo-op points, and maybe a few other things. This could be easily done by linking to a standard image, or perhaps creating a WM macro.

Dedicated pages for hotels and restaurants

Swept in from the Travellers' pub:

Where can I put a REALLY detailed information about a hotel? I have spent some effort in collecting travellers-oriented info on the hotels I recently stayed at. Each hotel worth at least a separate page with multiple sections each -- how is it better to contribute it? I'm sure the information would be helpful for those planning their trip careful enough to know details normally not available through hotel web sites or even reviews. And I would be happy to help Wikitravel.org to become a place to find such kind details next to overviews.

Same question for restaurants: I visited a dozen and ready to share some feedback, both overall and on specific dishes, recommended and not. I can publish a content for one of them if the idea doesn't look counter to Wikitravel goals at this stage.

-- DenisYurkin 19:01, 20 Sep 2005 (EDT)

Wikitravel isn't really designed for incredibly detailed reviews, so you should try to compress the data into a single paragraph.
That said, one of the things I'd like to see in the future is a link to a detailed review page for each attraction, where travellers can contribute their personal opinions. Jpatokal 21:13, 20 Sep 2005 (EDT)
Agreed here; interested in the personal opinions idea, but it's going to be a delicate operation. I think that about a paragraph per hotel is the most we can accommodate reasonably. At the outside, for "destination" hotels -- ones that are a site in and of themselves -- I could see doing a sub-section format like we do for attraction listings. But I think that'd be a rare exception. --Evan 11:08, 21 Sep 2005 (EDT)
Could you detail what do you mean by a delicate operation? I'm ready to write a single paragraph about each, but I wouldn't want to throw away my experiences that I believe valuable for other travellers, but too detailed to find space in that paragraph. Is it ok that I start with a single paragraph, then try to create a separate page for hotel or two? What are the chances the content will survive, and efforts will be not wasted? --DenisYurkin 14:34, 27 Sep 2005 (EDT)
A paragraph is plenty. The last person to re-write it can pretty much do whatever they want to it. If there's dissagreement then it can be taken to the talk page. There's no reason to have a separate page per listing. That will just make our guides seem really empty and useless, basically turning us into another World 66 or worse. -- Mark 15:15, 27 Sep 2005 (EDT)
> one of the things I'd like to see in the future is a link to a detailed review page for each attraction, where travellers can contribute their personal opinions.
Why wait for a future? Encouraging people to just share their opinions -- even from a single visit -- would become another source of information for compressed, one-paragraph summary. After all, most travellers visit every place one or two times per trip -- why loosing their insight? I am not too experienced in Wikitravel realities, but from my personal experiences, experts in the region are rare and, normally, well-paid -- while amateurs are many, and it's them who are willing to share with others. --DenisYurkin 13:49, 26 Sep 2005 (EDT)
The reason I'm filing this in the Mysterious Future is that Mediawiki doesn't currently allow any easy way to automatically insert "See reviews"/"Add reviews" buttons that would allow inserting and maintaining one-person reviews, not the usual collective editing. Manually maintaining these would be a massive headache. Jpatokal 06:15, 27 Sep 2005 (EDT)
I think I can easily make it reality with MediaWiki templates -- are we ready to give a try? Promise the page won't be deleted (as it happened with GreekWines) if it works? SeeReviews / AddReview can be achieved easily. The only thing I'm not sure about is signing each review automatically with user name and timestamp. However, I believe we can start with existing Wikitravellers -- and they are smart enough to sign their opinions. What do you think?
As I said in the thread above, I can propose some structure for hotel pages -- providing place both for objective, factual info, and subjective opinions. Chances effort won't be wasted? --DenisYurkin 14:34, 27 Sep 2005 (EDT)
I'm really not so much into this idea I'm afraid. I think it has the potential to make our articles really lopsided and to disperse effort away from our destination guides. Meanwhile if you have additional comments for or against one of the restaurants/bars/hotels on a given destination guide it seems to me that the destination's talk page is pretty much the perfect place to put it. We do not need, nor does it serve our goals to have pages per listing. -- Mark 15:09, 27 Sep 2005 (EDT)

Leave them out or keep them in?

The current article says:

If there are sections of the template that don't really fit your destination, well, just leave them out.

I'd suggest changing this to say that every article really should have at least the Get in, Get around, See, Eat and Sleep sections. Only clearly unnecessary sections (eg. Get in/By boat for a landlocked country) should be removed. Jpatokal 22:56, 20 Feb 2006 (EST)

Sure, should we just indicate which ones are optional? Majnoona 10:20, 28 February 2006 (EST)
Yes we should. It will be good for housekeeping. --Ravikiran 11:17, 28 February 2006 (EST)

Needed: Insider's Choice Section

See, Do, Eat, Drink, etc are all too broad in most cities here. We need an Insider's Choice section where specific activities & venues can be posted that can serve as an opinionated guide within the respective city. This is much required because an travel guide needs to give an opinion on what needs to be done in a particular place. Going forward, MediaWiki could support a rating system and each listing within Insider's Choice can be rated. Rehanyarkhan 10:23, 19 March 2006 (EST)

As User:Ravikiran r has stated elsewhere, I think that all listings in Wikitravel should be considered "Insider's Choice", and that articles should (and mostly do) already call out any particularly special destinations. For example, the Wikitravel:Accommodation listings page states that accommodations should be formatted as:
  • Name of Place, Address (extra directions if necessary), phone number (email, fax, other contact if possible), [1]. Days and times open. One to three sentences about the service, atmosphere, view, rooms, what have you. $lowprice-$highprice (extra price info).
If a hotel or sight is just so spectacular that it has to to be seen, mention it in the description. For some articles we even single out "must-see" destinations in the first paragraph of the article - take a look at Agra for an example. I just don't see how adding yet another heading, and one that will be endlessly debated, will really improve the usefulness of articles. -- Ryan 12:13, 19 March 2006 (EST)
The challenge is to provide information in large-city guides that are still immature, such as Bombay. In a mature guide like Bangkok, where there are a fairly large number of contributors and editors, the best destinations remain and the rest get filtered out. In the case of low volume contributors, the template needs to encourage contributors by not requiring them to feed in a lot of data; and providing focused direction. Keep in mind that many contributors are not yet tuned into the fact that this is a travel guide and needs to be from the perspective of being useful to tourists. They end up contributing informative listings which does not keep the TA (Target Auidence) in mind. Possibly a section like Insider's Guide or a better titled one like "Tourist Must Dos" will tune in contributors and get from them the very special contributions that can build Wikitravel into the guide it is intented to be. I even suggest a seperate template for high contribution destinations from low contribution ones Rehanyarkhan 12:46, 20 March 2006 (EST)
I don't see any need to expand the current structure. I really doubt that the problem is contributors holding back information that might be elicited with a fancy new heading category ; rather most places are lacking in listings simply because there are few or no contributors that have been there or know them well enough. I for one pretty much dump every single lodging, restaurant, and sight I come across in destinations, even ones which are obscure and less-than-stellar. In doing so I never feel restricted in what I can/should include -- everything goes under the Eat/Drink, Sleep, and Do/See sections. And my impression is that there are very few articles with a glut of listings that need to be trimmed to remove the well-known and overrated for the obscure "Insider's Choices". Places (sights, restaurants, hotels) that really are outstanding should stand on their own, and there's no need to force a rank or recommendation on them.
"Keep in mind that many contributors are not yet tuned into the fact that this is a travel guide and needs to be from the perspective of being useful to tourists."
OK, all Wikitravellers who are not aware that this a travel guide raise your hand... :) And seriously, the target audience is not just tourists, i.e., short-term pleasure travellers. I've written a lot of material on places I've been on long-term business trips, and in such situations, knowing where the post office and internet cafes are may be more important than the off-beat museums and bars.
I also think that the exclusivity of the heading "Insider's Choice" might cause apprehension in new contributors. After all, who are the implied "outsiders", and how can they contribute? -- Paul Richter 01:53, 22 March 2006 (EST)
Agree with Paul. If you want an opinionated guide to the best things in a city, then write an city itinerary like One day in Bangkok. Jpatokal 02:00, 22 March 2006 (EST)
I'm not sure if you've noticed, but Wikitravel is not graining much traction. You need to figure out how to make it no. 1 in Travel. I don't think anyone uses Wikitravel as a destination guide, even for fully fleshed out destinations. In my opinion the templates are far too neutral ever to become a guide. And yes, a guide does differ from an information resource. I think itenaries are a great idea and the kind of thing required. Make them a standard part of every template. Rehanyarkhan 14:03, 23 March 2006 (EST)
According to the web stats, we're more than doubling in traffic nearly every six months, so the statement "Wikitravel is not gaining much traction" seems a bit harsh, if not completely inaccurate. The consensus so far seems to be that the existing templates cover your ideas for "Insider's Choice". That said, you are welcome to find other ways to add more "opinion" to articles - the official policy is to be fair, so if a place is great, say so. If it's crowded and overpriced, say so. See Walnut Creek for one example of a Wikitravel article that is fair yet opinionated, and plunge forward to create others. -- Ryan 15:06, 23 March 2006 (EST)

Further to this, is there yet a way within destination places, esp. cities, to explore aspects that may be considered niche by some and not by others, such as live music, LGBT activities/attitudes, 'alternative' areas? Do people feel this kind of thing shouldn't necessarily be included in Wikitravel, should be broadly summarised under the destination description, or that there may or may not be a cause for some kind of new way of putting this information accross. I'm guessing from what I've seen on here that the second of the three will be favoured, but was wondering if anyone had any ideas? (No more bongos 10:43, 20 July 2006 (EDT))

Needed? Attribution/Credits section

I think we need an additional section to record attribution/credits/permission of text brought in from other compatible sources (such as World66, for instance). Recording that on talk pages as proposed here may be useful for other contributors to know the content inserted is not copyrighted material before we delete/revert it etc. I think, however, that it's not really useful when it comes to:

  1. Article printouts, because their talk pages normally won't be printed too.
  2. Users that are unfamiliar with Wikitravel, because our current credits footer can be leading people to think those are the only authors, when in fact they're not.

Or maybe that credits section doesn't have to be part of every article, but it should be required by our guidelines to figure at least on those that have imported content. What do you think? Ricardo (Rmx) 11:46, 29 March 2006 (EST)

I strongly think that this should be put into RDF code. I will amend the bottom-of-the-page credits generation to use source and author information from a template ("Template:Source"). I really strongly dislike the idea of giving attribution for external authors in a different way from internal authors; it's not only unfair, but might even be a licensing issue. --Evan 12:34, 29 March 2006 (EST)

Suggestion: New field for nearby locations

Swept in from the Pub:

For people unfamiliar with the geography of towns they visit on this site, I think it would be a good idea to have another sections "nearest places" much like Wiki does for city entries. This would then list links to other places that have entries on this site so one can plan road trips etc.

This is especially useful for small towns. A user may not be interested in what just one town has to offer, but being able to hotlink to other towns nearby and identifying what all the towns provide together makes one more likely to visit the area and plan their excursions... Dawtcalm 09:35, 3 Feb 2006 (EST)dawtcalm

The "Get out" section of each article is meant for nearby destinations. See Wikitravel:Article templates for discussions of templates and what each section is used for, and this discussion for comments about why the section is called "Get out". -- Ryan 12:08, 3 Feb 2006 (EST)

Adding the quick templates to this project page

As an idea, couldn't we replace the "quick version" link with the template code, as this is an even quicker way to do a template? -- DanielC 13:42, 9 April 2006 (EDT)

It'd probably make the page too big, I think. --Evan 14:16, 9 April 2006 (EDT)
I've had a go on User:DanielC/Templates. It doesn't seem much different in size terms and more closely follows what experienced people actually do on the site. It could hopefully encourage a few more first time users to use templates. The links to the longhand quick templates still exist, but on the full template pages. -- DanielC 16:58, 9 April 2006 (EDT)
Oh! I thought you meant to put the full text of the quick templates for each kind of article onto the page. No, that's fine. How about having the links to the quick versions and the subst: style? --Evan 20:28, 9 April 2006 (EDT)

Templates for hiking trails

I've got it! It';s called wikioutdoors! [[2]] Nankai 21:52, 25 February 2007 (EST)

I just wrote a brief page for the french GR 10 trail, and couldn't find a template for a hiking trail. This is a 7 week hike, and for people sleeping in tents, eating out of their backpacks, I don't think the usual template should apply. There are a lot of trails out there, such as the Appalachian_Trail and Pacific Crest Trail in the US and the many Grande Randonnées in Europe. Do people have any ideas? And, should Trail, a city in Canada, be changed to Trail_Canada if we want to have a section on hiking trails? bcnstony 03:15, 27 April 2006 (EDT)

See Wikitravel:Itinerary article template for how this is currently handled. There is an article started for Appalachian Trail already, but be careful - while the Appalachian and Pacific Crest Trails might deserve their own articles, it's probably not appropriate to create an article for every walking path out there. See Talk:Flower Ridge Trail for a previous attempt that kind of fizzled out. -- Ryan 03:23, 27 April 2006 (EDT)
Also see Wikitravel talk:What is an article?#A Comprehensive Travel Guide? -- Ryan 03:30, 27 April 2006 (EDT)

See also "trekking" at the bottom of this page. Somebody should move it up here.Nankai 03:52, 25 January 2007 (EST)

I also think we need a trail template, I think short little walks are "travel" so it's ok for wikitravel to describe them. I don't really get the idea why little day trips don't count. My one is Careys Creek Track Nankai 03:52, 25 January 2007 (EST)

New article type suggestion

Swept in from the Pub:

I was walking around in Paris today and found a great walking path from central Paris to Chateau de Vincennes in an eastern suburb. My immediate thought was: 'I want to tell other people about this on Wikitravel!' But, as I see it, we don't have any place to put such info...

I therefore suggest that we create a 'Walk'/'Stroll'/(insert better name suggestion here) type of article as a sub-article to cities. The layout could be about the same as Itiniraries and the articles could include photos, recommended stops, etc.

What do you think? Comments, suggestions? -- Jelse 13:20, 1 April 2006 (EST)

I think Itiniraries would already cover that. Or if the walking path is very short, just add it as something to "Do" within the city/district. -- Ilkirk 13:27, 1 April 2006 (EST)
Yeah, "walking tours" are a very nice way to see a city or part of one. I think this fits in nicely with itineraries, since a) it's directed and b) it will have waypoints. Jelse, why don't you get it started, and let's see how it goes? --Evan 13:37, 1 April 2006 (EST)
OK, plunging forward. I started the Walk to Vincennes itinerary. I have limited internet access at present but expect it to grow in the coming weeks. -- Jelse 10:06, 3 April 2006 (EDT)

Other races

you should add a section for other races for countries such as. what the countrys residents are like towards other races or religous groups maybe?.

I don't think we need to create a new section for this, because there are already good places for this information. When the situation is bad enough to possibly affect visitors' safety or make them very uncomfortable, this sort of information is included under "Stay safe". When it's simply a matter of pointing out to visitors how to avoid offending the locals due to religious differences (and getting treated badly in response), it's covered under "Respect". If it's particularly difficult for a visitor to practice his religion (e.g. vegetarian diet, dress code, sabbath observance) that might be mentioned under "Cope" or "Understand", but that's the kind of thing that the individual would mostly have to look out for himself, since we can't anticipate what those needs might be. - Todd VerBeek 08:30, 13 July 2006 (EDT)

ok thanks

Trekking template

Slowly we are getting more articles covering long treks, but currently there is no adequate template. The itinerary template, for example, doesn't have options for 'sleep', 'eat' or 'cities/villages', nor does it offer provision to add info on climate, fauna and forna or permit or fee requirements. Personally, I think a combination of 'National Park' and 'Itinerary' template would cover most eventualities. Anyway, if people think that a template specifically designed for trekking is useful, I'd be happy to make an attempt, but if not, then...well I won't - thoughts? WindHorse 12:49, 19 October 2006 (EDT)

Article lead

The first section of the country article does not have a heading. This is where you should put identifying information about the country, so that the traveler has some idea what you're talking about. Try to link to the continent or continental section the country is in. Rough borders for the country, and names of neighboring countries, give context here, too. You can pull off a few sentences of interesting tidbits, but try to leave detailed information on history, culture, etc., for the Understand section.

A guideline like this makes the typical article start in a very boring way. Discuss. — Ravikiran 05:09, 8 February 2007 (EST)

Quick versions = Template:X?

Should the "quick version X" articles just be redirected straight to Template:X, which have the same content and are used by the handy new article creator? Eg. I thought I fixed a type on Wikitravel:Quick phrasebook template, but it was still popping up from Template:Phrasebook. Jpatokal 06:24, 19 February 2007 (EST)

Bump. Jpatokal 12:06, 23 February 2007 (EST)
Agree. — Ravikiran 12:07, 23 February 2007 (EST)
I disagree. As I understand it, the quick version is for copy-and-paste, so it shows things wrapped in a nowiki-pre combo (I think). It might be possible to automatically import the template, though, either with normal template processing or in a "subst". --Evan 12:23, 23 February 2007 (EST)

More article templates?

could we not have article templates or a template for attractions? foe example:

  • theme parks and zoos etc
  • Gardens
  • Castles - since they are often tourism hotspots and may dominate a towns page
  • Or anything else people want to think?

anyone support me? or other ideas?

Thanks Jack ( User:ProfJack )

I think all those you mentioned can be handled quite well within a city/town article as they are now. The same goes for most other attractions one can think off, there are exceptions, but they are few and far between and are handled successfully on an individual basis. --NJR_ZA 17:53, 3 May 2007 (EDT)
"Attractions" is a key word that usually means "not a good subject for an article" on Wikitravel. Information about attractions goes in the articles for the destinations they are in. While a nearby castle may be the main tourism draw for a small towns, there isn't much need for it to dominate its article, because detailed information about individual sites is beyond the scope of this project. Our goal is to give people enough information to plan and execute their visit, so for a castle, we'd include a description, directions, cost of admission, hours, that sort of thing, and let the site's brochures, guides, and the visitor's own exploration handle the rest. Unless an attraction is so large and complex as to offer on-site lodging, dining alternatives, and so on (e.g. Disneyland) there isn't enough information within the scope of Wikitravel to fill out an article. - Todd VerBeek 18:23, 3 May 2007 (EDT)

Itinerary template

I would like to add a quick-add version of the itinerary template to MediaWiki:Newarticletext, but Template:Itinerary is already in use as a note that goes on top of itinerary articles notifying that it's an itinerary. Would anyone object if I moved that notification template to something else (perhaps Template:isItinerary), and turned Template:Itinerary into an article template, so that it matches the rest of the article templates? There's a couple hundred articles already using the Itinerary banner that would need updating, which I don't mind doing, but wanted to hear feedback first. It would be simpler to just name the itinerary article template something else, but then it wouldn't be consistent with the other templates. – cacahuate talk 16:30, 7 July 2007 (EDT)

Article Templates Vs Good English

When I wrote my first - and possibly last - WikiTravel page I was surprised to see the Wikitravel:Article_templates. I hesitated about contributing, but then I thought the headings were so inappropriate that everyone would probably be ignoring them. I went ahead, uh, plunged forward, and did my article.

There was an 'Introduction' which someone immediately changed it to Understand and an 'Information' section (the local tourist information office) which was changed to Contact. I mentioned somewhere that I was unenthusiastic about the "jokey (and in some cases inaccurate) headings" and received a little (virtual) tap on my shoulder from a 'friend'.

. . . I would highly recommend that you use your time on something other than trying to change article section headers. While you are perfectly within your rights to do so, it is extremely unlikely that you will succeed in building a consensus for any changes because the benefit of any change will be very small relative to the cost of changing our headers throughout ~9,000 articles. So, you're not alone in thinking the vague imperatives are weird, me too. But trying to get them changed just isn't a good way to use your energy here.

Hmm. Not the kind of advice I like. (Vaguely reminded me of a scene from On the Waterfront or was it The Godfather?) I like wasting energy (keeps my weight down) and my Scots side rebels against taking the easy way out when it's expressly indicated to me. 9,000 articles is no big deal. I've been involved in a project developing 3,500 articles on Wikipedia. Managing them all is not an insuperable problem, though this isn't the place for technicalities.

Evan writes (16 July 2006) "I don't think there are rules in English for how you title chapter and page section headings." Not really true. There is good English and bad English - and that applies to headings as much as text! Grammar still applies! There are a number of different ways of doing headings - using simple nouns is the easiest and most basic - but consistency in grammar and tone is essential if the reader is to use them, efficiently and transparently, to locate information.

Unfortunately the present headings are neither consistent or simple. They are also difficult to understand! Instead of reading the heading to understand the text, you have to read the text to understand the heading! (Given that they are unpunctuated, many of them will be read as nouns rather than imperatives.)

Let's look at the city headings, one by one:

  • Understand - imperative - threatening (‘’Just leave Chicago by the first train, OK? Understand?). What is it supposed to mean here? The reader won't know.
  • Get in - imperative - vaguely threatening, but what does it mean? Get in what?
  • Get around - imperative - a slang expression from somewhere? ("Hey Joe, I've just been in Milwaukee!" - "Get around!").
  • See / Do - imperatives - understandable but awkward.
  • Learn - imperative - Learn what? Local traffic signs? Local pickup expressions?
  • Work - noun or imperative? - will be read as a noun.
  • Buy / Eat - imperatives - understandable but 'Cave man' level communication (as noted above).
  • Budget / Mid-range / Splurge - nouns, imperatives - Inconsistent in tone. Budget / Mid-range are 'plain' words which will be read as nouns. Splurge will be understood as an (unpunctuated) slang imperative.
  • Drink - noun (slang?) or imperative? - Only bars? No dancing for example?
  • Sleep - noun or imperative? -
  • Contact - noun or imperative? - Contact who? Why? Emergencies? Tourist offices? Free accommodation with English speakers? A list of phone numbers?
  • Stay safe - imperative -
  • Cope - imperative - Don’t we all! But what does this mean here? Cope with what? Language? Dirty clothes? Paternity suits?
  • Get out - imperative - Why? Emergency exit routes for people who don't pay their hotel bills? Or for WikiTravel editors who offend 'The Consensus'?

Comments? Missiles? Nukes from Jpatokal? Have a good day to all! -- Kleinzach 23:13, 6 August 2007 (EDT)

Well, first off you can refer to me as a friend w/o quotes if you like and that really just was friendly advice because, while I do agree with you on all your points, I just don't think that a) you will gain support for such a major change and b) I selfishly hope that you will instead write some more excellent destination guides ;) I don't know, perhaps such a change could be done via a script, but that's not an area I know anything about. In any rate, I would like to be clear that policy challenges are welcome and encouraged here; my "time-waste" advice was purely pragmatic.
On a related note, I came up initially with section headings for the new Russian language version similar to the English ones, and our Russian contributors have objected with basically the same rationale that Kleinzach has outlined above. I tend to agree, and think that there are stylistically very superior options available, but would like to hear if anyone over here thinks that we should maintain the WT vague imperatives that are established on this and the other versions that I can read. --Peter Talk 03:18, 7 August 2007 (EDT)
I agree that such a set of headings looks quite odd in Russian, but maybe it's only a matter of a good translation, which we didn't reach in :ru yet.
Personally, I don't find some of the headings in :en as intuitive enough (like Splurge instead of Highend, or Drink "includes coffee shops? and place to dance?", or Cope "what exactly it includes", or Work and Learn "why we welcome both, but don't welcome active outdoor adventures"), but maybe it's only my poor knowledge of English? On the other hand, I realize that using standard set of headings you can find in any paper travel guide will add boredom to Wikitravel. --DenisYurkin 17:39, 7 August 2007 (EDT)
Just for comparison, but Lonely Planet, the world's soon to be second most successful travel guide, uses section headers similar to ours. I don't see a problem with the current headings, especially when you consider Wikitravel is not course material for English Grammar 101. -- Sapphire(Talk) • 15:55, 9 August 2007 (EDT)
Well, typical Lonely Planet sections (based on four guidebooks) are: Introduction, Facts for the visitor, Getting there and away, Getting around, Things to see and do, Places to stay, Places to eat, Entertainment, Shopping, Excursions, Language. So these are not similar to those used by WikiTravel. They are fairly standard guidebook headings - clear, unambiguous, and in good English, transparent to the reader who wants a bed for the night rather than a cute subheading. (In the last Lonely Planet Guide to Japan, the big city sections have: Orientation, Information, Sights, Activities, Tours, Fesival and events, Sleeping, Eating, Drinking, Entertainment, Shopping, Getting there and away, Getting around. A bit less standard, but still not like the WikiTravel ones.)
Obviously we shouldn't use the same set as Lonely Planet, but we should use clear, simple, correct English. Sapphire thinks correct English is not important ( . . . Wikitravel is not course material for English Grammar 101.), but correct English is easy to read (especially for non-natives), while bad English makes it more difficult to access information. -- Kleinzach 23:54, 9 August 2007 (EDT)
Actually, I do care about correctly using English. However, I think there are a few other areas where the proper usage of English is more important. That said, changing this is likely not to be overwhelmingly difficult with the help of a bot. Before this can be changed, you need to get a consensus from the community to do so, but I'd rather use my energy and the community's energy on writing and improving guides and descriptions. -- Sapphire(Talk) • 00:41, 10 August 2007 (EDT)
P.S. My LP uses headers similar to ours, but that is apparently on a guide-by-guide case. -- Sapphire(Talk) • 00:41, 10 August 2007 (EDT)
Aside from "Drink" and "Cope", I think they're all incredibly clear. We're never going to find words that everyone LOVES. If we go with LP ones like "Places to stay" some people will say it's too boring. Someone will find a complaint for just about anything, so at a point, you just need to go with something. What's wrong with "Sleep"? Who cares if it's a noun or an imperative? It's pretty clear what is supposed to go in that area. Any guide you pick up will require a minute of trying to understand their particular format, and I really don't think Wikitravel is that hard to decipher. Also keep in mind that on Huge City articles we have districts... so the sleep section needs to have a title that makes sense on the main page which will just be a quick description of the types of accomodation to expect, and in the district articles, where there will be actual hotels listed. "Places to stay" wouldn't make as much sense then on the main city page, since there then wouldn't be any places to sleep listed below it.
Drink has been debated over a lot, since it is supposed to cover nightlife and well, there's more to do than just drink. Cope is also a little strange, I would agree. The best thing for you to do is to come up with some alternative ideas and propose them, and see if several people agree with you and we can build a consensus to change. If that happens, then we'll need to figure out how to change them, and find someone willing to write a bot. Anyway, if you have ideas, let's hear em! – cacahuate talk 01:49, 10 August 2007 (EDT)
I think you'll find that a lot of people feel passionately about the section headings, and it probably splits nearly 50-50 for those who love the current headings and those who strongly dislike the current headings. Over the years there hasn't really been much (read: any) success in coming to an agreement on what better terms to use for any of the headings, and as a result the status quo has been maintained. An unfortunate side effect of having many discussions with no changes to show for them is a significant number of contributors now view the issue as something that's simply unlikely ever to change, which is why you may be receiving advice that building a consensus to change the article headings is likely to be a much less fulfilling endeavor than contributing to the project in other ways. You are of course welcome to try, but it will take some very persuasive and more importantly NEW arguments to create a result that differs from past attempts. -- Ryan • (talk) • 02:29, 10 August 2007 (EDT)
Ryan, could you please give some references to the previous discussions? I think it might help a bit in understanding whether arguments are new or not. --DenisYurkin 03:07, 10 August 2007 (EDT)
I'm not attached to the current headers one way or another, but I don't remember struggling to understand the different sections the first time I looked at a Wikitravel article (New Orleans). They're window-dressing. I think we can credit our readers with enough intelligence to figure out that 'See' is shorthand for 'Places to see', not someone hiding in their computer and making demands of them. The issue with these headings is one of style, not grammar. Some people like that early 00's minimalism, and others don't. I'm fairly confident that snarky comments could be made about any potential heading. ("Information? What, is this a spy movie? Have you got the information from Lyvbnskya? Places to eat? Who eats places? Can I get some ketchup with these bricks?") A better way to effect a change in consensus would be to propose a full set of alternatives and negotiate forward from there. Gorilla Jones 03:17, 10 August 2007 (EDT)
In response to Denis, the talk pages for most of the article templates (including this talk page) contain discussions about changing headings, and I know that there are other discussions out there. Off the top of my head, some of the arguments people have cited for changing the headings is that they are confusing, bad grammar, dumb, and not descriptive enough. Arguments cited for keeping them have included that they are unique to Wikitravel and help "brand" the content, reflect the irreverent tone of the site, are completely understandable (common comment "'Get in' is the heading describing how you 'get in' to a place"), are different from LP and other travel guides and thus dissuade copying from those guides, and that people "just like them". There is significantly more to be found by reading old talk pages, but hopefully those examples provide an idea of the discussions that have happened in the past. -- Ryan • (talk) • 03:59, 10 August 2007 (EDT)
Before we stop repeating old arguments... "Get out" is rotten and no one understands it unless they are looking at an already-filled out section. And "Drink" stink. --Peter Talk 04:03, 10 August 2007 (EDT)
See Wikitravel talk:Big city article template#Get out --> Nearby for a discussion about the pros and cons of "Get out". That's the discussion that earned me my asbestos pants on this site. -- Ryan • (talk) • 12:07, 10 August 2007 (EDT)

Developing a discussion like this one to a satisfactory conclusion is always difficult. If there is a consensus that the present headings are not ideal, then we should look at possible alternatives, trying to identify a set that is broadly acceptable. Is there a consenus to do that? If so:

Proposal: that we write a set of city headings (set A, set B etc.) in a new section. After we have some complete sets we can consider them (and if necessary make changes to them), trying to reach agreement on a series of headings that are suited to WikiTravel. Does that seem reasonable? -- Kleinzach 05:12, 10 August 2007 (EDT)

Some days it seems incredible to me that anything gets done around here, much less redone. OldPine 07:03, 10 August 2007 (EDT)
Sorry. That wasn't even snarky enough to register, and really not helpful. But hey, I'm old. What seems to be needed here, and in many other instances is a simple user poll. Probably one for each heading in this case. I don't see that "complete sets" are necessarily called for and agree that some headings are "incredibly clear" as stated above. However I repeat the call above for actual suggestions. Otherwise, I feel we've covered this. (You guys make me proud. Think I'll take the day off.) OldPine 07:23, 10 August 2007 (EDT)
David, you are a trip. By the way, I hope you enjoyed your day off. -- Sapphire(Talk) • 06:56, 11 August 2007 (EDT)
See my comments above - there isn't a consensus that the present headings are not ideal. There really are a lot of contributors who really, really like the current headings and don't want to see them changed. -- Ryan • (talk) • 12:07, 10 August 2007 (EDT)
I attempted to write my requested-for "nuke" earlier, but it was re-nuked by highly reliable Internet connections here in India. Let me try again before the lights do that neat strobe effect, the TV says "pop!" and the UPS starts beeping again.
So... attempting to dissect headings from a grammatical point of view is kind of misguided. Do you find "iPod"'s implication that you are an organ of alien asexual reproduction offensive? Am I mortally insulted that "youTube" is comparing me to plumbing supplies? No, they're just snappy, memorable and unique, just like Wikitravel's headings. (And I'd even posit that WT headings make a lot more sense at first glance.)
I would be in favor of renaming the perennially misunderstood "Get out" to something else, although there isn't much consensus as to what that something else would be. "Move on"? Jpatokal 13:05, 10 August 2007 (EDT)
"Onward"? Gorilla Jones 12:07, 12 August 2007 (EDT)
"Next stop" or "Next move" - ? ~ 202.71.45.37 07:38, 11 October 2007 (EDT)

Template suggestions

Here are four suggestions. They are in sets - the headings need to be consistent in tone and form, also it should make for an easier decision process. -- Kleinzach 11:13, 10 August 2007 (EDT)

  • Style A, Simple nouns: Introduction, Access from abroad, Local transport, Sights, Activities, Resources, Shopping, Restaurants, Accommodation, Night life and entertainment, Information and internet access, Safety, Troubleshooting, Excursions + Low end, Mid range, High end
    • My preferred option - simple, unambiguous, transparent. -- Kleinzach 11:13, 10 August 2007 (EDT)
      • Those are incredibly ambiguous (and boring). "Get in" isn't for access "from abroad", it's for access from anywhere else: the other side of the street, the next town or the other side of the planet. "Information" and "Resources" are thoroughly meaningless. "Troubleshooting"? Is this a guide to debugging your PC? Jpatokal 13:05, 10 August 2007 (EDT)
No one understands what 'Get in' means, hence I didn't either. But this is missing the point here. We are talking about a style (using nouns) not individual headings which can be made appropriate to the content if we know what it is. -- Kleinzach 05:37, 11 August 2007 (EDT)
Take a look at Wikitravel:Huge city article template — the long version, with explanations — if you're still confused by what's supposed to go where. But my actual point, which also applies to "Style B", was that I'm not at all convinced that "simple nouns" or "-ing forms" have a major leg up on our current "simple verbs". Jpatokal 11:10, 11 August 2007 (EDT)
We can't expect readers (or writers for that matter) to read template explanations. -- Kleinzach 11:55, 11 August 2007 (EDT)
Nobody understands 'Get in'? My mother always said that I was special, but there's the evidence, because I don't recall stopping in bewilderment at those two words. Or is it not just me? I definitely don't mind asking writers to do the simple mental calculus to figure out what the sections mean. Consider it a screening process. I could handle 'Get there' an alternative, but 'Get in' is fine to me. Gorilla Jones 12:07, 12 August 2007 (EDT)
  • Style B, -ing forms: Introducing Minsk (or wherever), Getting there, Getting around, Seeing the sights, Pursuing outdoor activities, Shopping, Eating, Finding accommodation, Drinking and dancing, Getting information and internet access, Staying safe, Solving problems, Going further + Slumming, Staying mid-range, Splurging
    • Mm, "pursuing" and "staying mid-range" -- I can hardly contain my frisson of excitement. Plus half of those are copyvios from LP. Jpatokal 13:05, 10 August 2007 (EDT)
So LP are selectively copyrighting the English language? No, I don't think so. Many guidebooks have used these forms in the past. Also headings are not supposed to be thrilling, any more than road signs are supposed to be. -- Kleinzach 05:45, 11 August 2007 (EDT)
Slumming is terrible - not all hotels in the 'Budget' category are crappy (and if they are, they shouldn't be listed here in the first place). If you thought splurge was bad, why is its present continuous form (which I have never seen used) any better? Drinking and dancing leaves almost as much uncovered as Drink does. Solving problems? Why can't these people solve their own problems? Up by yer own bootstraps, people. Gorilla Jones 12:07, 12 August 2007 (EDT)
  • Style C, Local language (as appropriate) + English: Introduzione/Introduction, Come arrivare/International access, Come spostarsi/Local transport, Da vedere/Sights, Attività/Activities, Acquisti/Shopping, Ristorante/Restaurants, Vita notturna/Night life, Alloggio/Accommodation, Sicurezza personale/Safety, Escursioni/Excursions etc. (my Italian is poor but that's the general idea)
    • This is the English Wikitravel, why on earth should we stick other languages in the headings, of all places? Jpatokal 13:05, 10 August 2007 (EDT)
Because it could be useful? Many of us try to speak the local language when we travel. It would also be original and make WikiTravel more distinctive. -- Kleinzach 05:51, 11 August 2007 (EDT)
And what do we do for destinations where English is the main language? This would also be tons of fun to attempt to lay down and enforce for the umpteen thousand languages on the planet, esp. when you've got a place like Singapore which has 4 official languages. Jpatokal 11:10, 11 August 2007 (EDT)
Use common sense? It works well enough on Wikipedia! -- Kleinzach 04:33, 12 August 2007 (EDT)
You didn't answer the question. So to state the obvious, "style C" doesn't actually apply to any English-speaking destinations, you'd still need to adopt one of the others as a "base" style. Jpatokal 09:53, 12 August 2007 (EDT)
Plus it would be a pain in the ass to write links directly to article headers, like Kyoto#Buy. One virtue of keeping brief section headings is preventing the Table of Contents from covering most of the top of the page. Gorilla Jones 12:07, 12 August 2007 (EDT)
  • Style D, Sentence (FAQ) style: Why should I go there? How do I get there? How do I get around? What are the main sights? etc. etc.
    • Why do I think this is silly? Perhaps because it's hard to read and a waste of space? Could there be a consensus against this? Jpatokal 13:05, 10 August 2007 (EDT)
Waste of space? What space? This is the internet not a book! (But it is wordy and so wouldn't be my choice.) -- Kleinzach 05:58, 11 August 2007 (EDT)
I think you missed the news a few days back =) Jpatokal 11:10, 11 August 2007 (EDT)
Yes, I'm just beginning to catch up with all this now (including the breakaway of WikiVoyage). Does this mean the whole of WikiTravel will be commercialized? -- Kleinzach 04:31, 12 August 2007 (EDT)
Umm... It will be commercialized by anyone who feels like using our content for commercial goals. Same goes for WikiVoyage, seeing as both sites use a copyleft (like Wikipedia's) that allows anyone to use their content for any purpose, provided it remains in the commons and is properly attributed. In any rate, one of the principal goals of Wikitravel is to be easily used in print format; this makes sense, being that it is a travel guide. --Peter Talk 05:20, 12 August 2007 (EDT)
Wow. I second Jpatokal's analyses. And I feel much better about the existing headings now. Thanks. OldPine 21:20, 10 August 2007 (EDT)
To OldPine: You asked for suggestions and I've attempted a broad approach to finding a generally-acceptable solution. Maybe the ideas are good, maybe they aren't . . . (The present set obviously don't qualify given the opposition to them in the past.) So would you like to return the compliment by jumping off your stump and having a go yourself? -- Kleinzach 09:12, 11 August 2007 (EDT)
No, as I am fine with the current set and do not see them as "not qualifying". You were the one wanting change. If you demand change you need to offer solutions. That was the point. Thanks for offering them. I feel you were initially given good advice preceded by a tap on the shoulder (or was that already clear). OldPine 09:29, 11 August 2007 (EDT)
Kleinzach, thanks for making the effort to offer alternatives headings, but I also prefer to stick with the original, except perhaps for changing 'Get out' to something clearer. WindHorse 10:06, 11 August 2007 (EDT)
Good on you for coming up with alternatives, as was suggested, but I don't see those as preferable. Gorilla Jones 12:07, 12 August 2007 (EDT)

Conclusion

I started this discussion, so it's appropriate for me to bring it to a close.

I will not after all be contributing to WikiTravel - I wouldn't write for any publication that turned my prose into grunts - however as an exploration of group dynamics this discussion has had positive as well as negative aspects. It has been revealing!

To anyone considering joining WikiTravel I'd recommend checking it out before starting to write, also looking at the alternatives, in particular the local City wikis. My guess is that the future lies with them.

Goodbye WikiTravel! -- Kleinzach 05:03, 11 October 2007 (EDT)

Let's see: you proposed changing the article headings of 17,000 articles that 19,019 registered users have worked on for over three years, and you didn't manage to get anybody to support any of your proposed alternatives, so now you're taking your marbles and going home. Yes, this does indeed tell you something about group dynamics, but not necessarily what you intended... Jpatokal 07:24, 11 October 2007 (EDT)
Scribimus indocti doctique (People who can write, can't necessarily read!). Quite a lot of people here have agreed with me. Maybe some of them are no longer around? The 11 extracts are all from this page - no need to go further!
  • Why don't we use Eating, Seeing, Understanding, etc. instead of Eat, See, Understand, etc.? (Anon 20 May 2004)
  • I would prefer the present continuous form. . . .Colin Angus Mackay 02:29, 24 Jun 2005 (EDT)
  • . . . the Get out header seems to generate the most problems . . . Colin (Jensen) 03:19, 24 Jun 2005 (EDT)
  • Get out has been causing problems, and so I would like to consider switching to Get away, and then perhaps switch Drink to Get out maybe... -- Mark 03:24, 24 Jun 2005 (EDT)
  • I would still prefer to change the headings to something more meaningful. The current, imperative, form seems to much like a drill instructor barking commands. . . . Colin Angus Mackay 15:01, 24 Jun 2005 (EDT)
  • It is bad English. Is this the English version or the Cave-man version? Terry 20:40, 9 Aug 2005 (EDT)
  • 'Get In' is definitely bad English' - you can't 'get in' a country or a city. . . . Anon 00:30, 17 Jul 2006 (EDT)
  • I came up initially with section headings for the new Russian language version similar to the English ones, and our Russian contributors have objected with basically the same rationale that Kleinzach has outlined above. I tend to agree, and think that there are stylistically very superior options available . . . --Peter Talk 03:18, 7 August 2007 (EDT)
  • I don't find some of the headings in :en as intuitive enough (like Splurge instead of Highend, or Drink "includes coffee shops? and place to dance?", or Cope "what exactly it includes", or Work and Learn . . . --DenisYurkin 17:39, 7 August 2007 (EDT)
  • Cope is also a little strange. . . cacahuate talk 01:49, 10 August 2007 (EDT)
  • "Get out" is rotten and no one understands it unless they are looking at an already-filled out section. And "Drink" stink. --Peter Talk 04:03, 10 August 2007 (EDT)
Jpatokal will now wish to have his customary last word.
I only get the last word if you stop responding. =P But I'll note that you forgot this tidbit:
I would be in favor of renaming the perennially misunderstood "Get out" to something else. Jpatokal 13:05, 10 August 2007 (EDT)
Shock horror, I actually agree with you that "Get out" is unclear, and would be happy to change it! There's even a big ol' debate where I and a bunch of other regulars lock horns with Evan over the issue. Problem is, nobody has yet figured out a better name... Jpatokal 03:56, 16 October 2007 (EDT)
As you are good on statistics, Jpatokal, tell us: How many editors have you lost in the past year in this kind of debacle? How many editors have logged on and then given up? How many editors have left and gone over to other sites, including notably WikiVoyage? -- Kleinzach 02:05, 16 October 2007 (EDT)
I'm fairly sure you're the only one who has ever decided to leave in a huff over the section headings, but feel free to prove me wrong. Consensus is a tricky beast: as they say, you can make everybody happy some of the time, or some people happy all the time, but you can't make everybody happy all the time... Wikis lose contributors all the time and it's very hard to figure out why.
And, in an odd way, I'm happy Wikivoyage exists. Competition is always good, and the threat of another site stealing WT's lunch is what keeps our corporate masters in line. Jpatokal 03:56, 16 October 2007 (EDT)

Internet access as a standard section

Hey, I would like to see Internet access (cafe's, call shops) as a standard section of templates, maybe a subsection of do, or get around. Why? Well, because, when the online guide takes itself serious, this is the first point where one could plan further travels. For me it my most used tool. But then, of course, it is interesting to have online where to find the internet cafe, and you need to know where the internet cafe is to go online. But travellers might make a print out of the place they are going to, or maybe put wikitravel in their portable device or so. And then it is handy to have an address to go online. So what do you think?

Daniel - from Civitavecchia - I walked around for hours to get into this cafe 88.44.122.242 15:36, 9 August 2007 (EDT)
There actually is a standard section for internet hotspots and cafes, and it is "Contact." Unfortunately this information is often missing, so do everyone a favor and put up the address of the cafe you're at! --Peter Talk 16:03, 9 August 2007 (EDT)
Hm, but it isnt in the template. Theres little incentive for people who make new pages to add it. x 88.44.122.242 16:19, 9 August 2007 (EDT)
You're right, it's missing from the small city template. I'll fix that pronto. --Peter Talk 16:30, 9 August 2007 (EDT)

Get out

I'd like to confirm the following guidelines for "Get out" section listings:

  1. Should not use the Wikitravel:Listings#Listing tag (listing tag example)
  2. Should use the Wikitravel:One-liner listings format (like Regions, Districts, Cities)
  3. Should be limited to nine, per the logic behind Wikitravel:Geographical hierarchy#Dividing geographical units (too long example)
  4. Should contain no external links as these belong in the article being linked to

Please comment if you think otherwise - thanks. ~ 203.144.143.4 02:48, 20 January 2008 (EST)

I agree on three of the points. Listings tags should be out as this is an example of a one liner list (so yes, we should apply the one liner listings formatting guidelines). I strongly agree that we should not allow external links in the get out section, as that encourages contributors to not create the corresponding article.
But I'll disagree with the limit of 9 suggested destinations. A major destination like London often serves as a hub for travel, and in my opinion, the Get Out section should be extensive. I'd recommend instead that we mandate subdivision of the Get out list, as we do with Wikitravel:Accommodation_listings#Avoid_long_lists Sleep listings (based on Wikitravel_talk:Accommodation_listings#Avalanche_of_hotel_listings this long, but productive discussion). I would venture that the best way to subdivide Get out lists is by region (which also allows us to link surrounding regions)—the Chicago guide provides a useful example. --Peter Talk 03:50, 20 January 2008 (EST)
I'm not sure with ExtLinks requirement. We have examples where GetOut place can not be an article in Wikitravel, but that places still worth mentioning in GetOut and giving an official extlink to it. For example, Statue Park in Budapest.
BTW, whole BudapestGetOut example shows that it's not always practical to use one-liner requirements for GetOut section. --DenisYurkin 04:06, 20 January 2008 (EST)
"Statue Park" shouldn't be in the Get out section, it should be in Budapest#See
"Hungarian Open-Air Museum" should be in Szentendre#See
Transport options for Visegrád should be in Visegrád#Get in
~ 203.144.143.4 06:48, 20 January 2008 (EST)

I disagree with #1.... currently the article templates note that daytrips should be in Get out (which I think includes attractions out of the city and not in another city), and I think they should use the listings templates if appropriate – cacahuate talk 13:10, 28 June 2009 (EDT)

Districts and listings

The biggest design flaw I perceive in Wikitravel as both contributor and user is the structuring of huge city listings by districts. When a new user looks at a huge city (or any other) page for, say, restaurants, they most naturally look under the Eat section for them, even on huge city page. And they're likely to find them, since when a new contributor looks at a page, they are likely to put restaurants even on a huge city page in the city page (not district page) Eat section, thus encouraging other new contributors to do this by example. Meanwhile people who follow the official policy are putting restaurants on the district pages, where many new users (I speak from experience) never think to look for them. The confusion is compounded by the fact that it seems to be accepted practice (e.g. on the Singapore page which is held up as an example) to put listings for fast food restaurants on the city, not district, page, thus serving as an example that restaurant and other listings belong there. This may be done because these restaurants have many branches, but it still causes confusion. The same confusion holds for hotels, museums, etc. The result is that listings are being dispersed in two places, and most of them aren't where new users are going to expect to find them. I think it would be far better to always put listings for everything on the city page, and subdivide those listings there into sub-lists by district. This is the way every printed travel guide I can think of does it for long lists. And all other listings should follow the same pattern. If the resulting lists make the city page too long, then it would be better to link to separate pages for each type of listing; for instance, on the Athens page in the Eat section just say something like "Athens offers many restaurants, primarily Greek, though foreign and international cuisine is becoming more popular," with the word restaurants being a link to a separate Athens restaurants page, arranged by neighborhood. Retrofitting would be a problem, but the current confusion seems to me intolerable. Sailsetter 18:50, 24 March 2008 (EDT)

I agree that all restaurants should be on district pages, even chain outposts, precisely for the reason that this causes confusion. There's a conversation about this somewhere...
Peter probably refers to this discussion: Wikitravel talk:Restaurant listings#How to write multiple branches of restaurants?. --DenisYurkin 03:46, 25 March 2008 (EDT)
But I can't support the proposal that huge city restaurants all wind up on one page. I understand the logic in doing so, but I think our format diverges significantly from more traditional guides in that people can "custom print" what they want for their own itinerary. A visitor to Chicago can save on the inkjet cartridges by just printing the one or two neighborhoods where they plan to go. Moreover, we differ from our predecessors/competitors in our depth of coverage. I'm only really familiar with the Chicago huge article, so I'll keep referring to that, but if we were to have an article for all of Chicago's restaurants, or hotels, I think it would be a disastrous behemoth.
I think a better approach might be to see how we can make the district articles more noticeable. On Chicago, for example (again), we used the regionlist template + map right at the top of the article to make the district articles really stand out (in addition to the {{printdistricts}} template). Another way to really emphasize the district articles is to have lots of links to them from the main article—from really every section. So in the sleep section, mention districts that are particularly useful places to find a bed, or in the drink section, link to the main nightlife neighborhoods.
Another great thing to do would be to (finally) update our "help" namespace articles, to better explain to readers how to use Wikitravel guides. --Peter Talk 19:56, 24 March 2008 (EDT)
Are museums supposed to be listed on the District pages? It seems like people consulting Wikitravel for museums are going to want a whole list of them together, so they can decide which ones to see, in what order, how much time to spend in each ... So that argues museum listings should be on the city page. But if they are, that creates more confusion if restuarant listings aren't on that page. And the confusion is vastly compounded if there are some restaurant listings on the city page because someone who hadn't noticed the policy. Why not have a standard organization for all listings, to avoid the confusion? And f restaurants are organized by district on the city page, surely anyone who can use the internet knows enough to be able to print off just the districts they want; they don't need separate district pages for that. Sailsetter 20:38, 24 March 2008 (EDT)
Museums too are supposed to be on the district pages. I agree that someone looking to visit a city would want to see information on which museums to visit in the overview article, but I disagree that it would be most helpful to have a full list of all museums in a huge city in one place. I think it's best instead to give a thoughtful overview of what visiting museums in the big city is about: mention the most famous museums, accompanied by links pointing directly to their containing district articles, and some of the less famous museums that are nonetheless really worth seeking out for any visitor. A full museum list for Chicago (forgive me for abusing this example ;)) would include the Ridge Historical Society, or the Polish Museum of America, both of which truly are truly only of interest for a small subsect of visitors, who would hopefully be directed to the appropriate district articles by other means (like the section giving an overview of the city's "ethnic neighborhoods").
Ultimately, the more I think about this, the more surprised I feel that other guides would not organize themselves in this manner. What matters most of all in picking out a place to eat, for example, is proximity. If I'm staying in Harlem, I'm not going to want to wade through all the restaurant listings from the Lower East Side (at last a different example!). It also parallels the general framework by which we organize all our content—giving overviews and itinerary advice from region pages & then the nitty-gritty of listings + contact info on the small city pages. --Peter Talk 00:13, 25 March 2008 (EDT)

This was been discussed before, and there are pros and cons to both approaches, with the consensus so far being that the way it's being done now is the lesser of two evils. I think one workable solution would be to make this configurable, so you can switch between districted and one-giant-view articles, but obviously this would require a non-trivial amount of work to implement.

Also, for what it's worth, most travel guides do district restaurants geographically as well. Current LPs, for example, seem to use a hybrid model: a large city like Hong Kong is broken up into big districts (Lantau, Kowloon, The Island), and big districts are then internally broken up into small districts (Kowloon -> TST, Mong Kok, etc). Restaurant listings are split by big district only, so you'll find all restaurants in Kowloon under "Kowloon", but you won't find Lantau restaurants in there.

To me, this seems eminently sensible, and the way we could copy this on Wikitravel is simply to keep the districts large. I've previously suggested a rule of thumb of one district per 500,000-1,000,000 inhabitants, which would avoid the temptation to break off every little neighborhood into its own page. Jpatokal 04:46, 25 March 2008 (EDT)

500-1000k is good as a necessary, but not sufficient condition for a district to have a separate article. In Barcelona, Rome or Moscow, for example, there are lots of districts (however defined) which meed the "500-1000k" criteria, but have small or none at all interest for a traveler. --DenisYurkin 13:04, 25 March 2008 (EDT)
Actually, I'd definitely oppose a population requirement; cities should ideally be broken down not by population (which is travel irrelevant), but by sights, activities, restaurants, nightlife, and hotels. For an example opposite of Moscow, the Chicago Loop has an overnight population of only some 16,000, but it clearly warrants an article—it is the number one tourist destination in the city, full of stuff to see, do, eat, drink, buy, and probably has enough hotels to accommodate more visitors than residents. So, what I think is relevant is travel density, not population density. But this is already a different discussion topic than where we started out.
I do think it would be nice to have an option to click a link to aggregate all restaurants/hotels/whatever on to one page for printing, perhaps we should create a feature request? Still, though, I can't really think of a situation where an aggregate list like that would be more helpful than a well-written overview of the city's dining scene, or museum scene, or what have you. --Peter Talk 13:29, 25 March 2008 (EDT)
Sorry, I wasn't clear. I don't mean that the district itself has to have a population of X, I mean that the number of districts should correlate with population. So a city of a million people should not have twenty districts, in fact it probably shouldn't be districted at all (cf. Helsinki), but a city of ~4 million (like Singapore) should get no more than 8 districts or so. Jpatokal 04:45, 26 March 2008 (EDT)
OK, that does make a lot more sense. Although there is still room for a lot of complications. Chicago has a city population of only 2.8 million, but it has 21 districts, most of which are stars. In part, that has to do with the fact that the city has a huge metro area of about 9.5 million, which would mean no more than 19 districts? At least that would be getting closer to what we came up with. Similarly, Paris has only about 2 million residents, but 4 districts for such a sightseeing-packed destination just wouldn't be helpful. Washington, D.C. provides a more extreme example—the city only has about 600,000 residents. It has a huge metro area somewhere around 5 million, but even then I came up with 13 districts, and I'm quite confident that all of them (with maybe 1-2 exceptions) could sustain long, star-quality articles (the 1-2 examples are actually the largest districts in the breakdown, and would not usefully combine with other districts).
I guess I worry that a population measure risks being too arbitrary no matter how we define it, since it will be too restrictive for very travel-dense/population-dense cities like D.C., or perhaps under-restrictive to cities with low travel density to population density (like overpopulated island-city Mumbai, which should not have 27 districts). I still think the best way to prevent mass over-districting is to encourage a lengthy consensus-building process on the city talk page, with a hazy view to what's most useful for the traveler, and with the goal in mind of having the articles fill out (all sections) nicely. --Peter Talk 12:41, 26 March 2008 (EDT)

This discussion is all very well, but I want to register a complaint that it's lost sight of the most important, and least debatable, thing I originally said: due to the current district/listings relationship, information is not getting to users. Many users seeing a country page with Eat and Sleep sections but no listings under them will conclude there aren't any such listings for that country; in other cases, users seeing on a country page a few fast food chain listings, which are supposed to be there, or some restaurant listings, which were (understably) put there by mistake, will never find the information on the district pages. And the same with hotels, etc. I know this happens because it happened to me, and if I hadn't kept investigating Wikitravel as a contributor I never would have known about the information I missed when I first approached it as a user. The obvious solution to this problem is to change the organization as I suggested; if that's not going to be done, then what is, just let people continue to be confused? Sailsetter 13:55, 26 March 2008 (EDT)

BTW, when I first time traveled to a districted city, I had nearly the same confusion: see beginning of this thread: Talk:Budapest#separating content by districts. --DenisYurkin 18:11, 26 March 2008 (EDT)
Point taken. I've been thinking that some high profile tutorials for new users would be a fantastic thing. I just came across an old suggestion about using Amberjack to create some "intro to Wikitravel" web videos. I think that's something really worth pursuing—especially a video giving an overview to readers how best to use Wikitravel for travel. Going through the help files & policy articles will always be useful for contributors, for whom the process is useful in getting to know how a wiki works, but people just reading (the essential consumer of the site) really shouldn't have to wade through that mess. Would there be any interest in a Tutorial Expedition? --Peter Talk 14:44, 26 March 2008 (EDT)
Maybe the Districts section for cities that have them should be moved to the very beginning of the article, between the name heading and Understand, with a note in that District section of what sort of listings will be found (restaurants, etc.) on the district pages. That would make it more noticable what the organization is. Also, if there are going to be fast food chains on the city page of a page with Districts, there should regularly be a note to them that real restaurants will be found on the District pages. Sailsetter 11:33, 27 March 2008 (EDT)
That is the place where the Districts should be listed. And yeah, I'd actually support a clear "YOO-HOO, the restaurants are OVER HERE!" template for all districted sections (See, Do, Eat, Drink, Sleep). Jpatokal 12:37, 27 March 2008 (EDT)
Yes, looking at the huge city template I see that now, but in the actual pages I've looked at it often doesn't seem to be done. Maybe it starts out like that and then gets moved down. Or maybe people who start the pages don't bother with districts, and when they're later put in they're not put at the top. Anyway, may I assume I can move huge city district sections to the top of the city page if I want, and put in a note to see the individual district pages for listings? Sailsetter 13:21, 27 March 2008 (EDT)
Yes, please do! Lets make a template first, though: perhaps Template:Click the damn district links? --Peter Talk 13:53, 27 March 2008 (EDT)
Can the huge city template be modified to say more emphatically that listings will be found in the district sections? Currently it says, "[City] is a huge city with several district articles containing sightseeing, restaurant, nightlife and accommodation listings — consider printing them all," which ought to be clear enough but apparently isn't. Maybe it should say something like, "[City] is a huge city with a number of districts of interest to the traveler. Sections below on this page give an overview of accommodation, dining, sightseeing, and other topics; listings of such things in the various district are listed on the individual district pages." Then people should be encouraged to add to each overview section again, "for listings of restaurants, please see the various district pages." Maybe that would make it clear. Sailsetter 12:07, 28 March 2008 (EDT)
Sounds good to me—all in agreement? --Peter Talk 13:51, 28 March 2008 (EDT)
Did I understand correctly that you vote for making Template:PrintDistricts more verbose? If so, please review earlier discussion where we decided to use as short version as it currently is: Wikitravel talk:Huge city article template#a notice on districts on top of huge city articles.
As for notices inside each of Buy, See, Sleep and Eat/Drink sections, I agree that it'll be helpful to have a template directing to district articles. What text exactly will be used for it? --DenisYurkin 14:03, 30 March 2008 (EDT)

The Athens page museum section says, "Here are a selection of 'must-sees' - district articles will hold additional possibilities:" This implies that major museums are on the city page (as most of them are now for Athens) and only "other" museums are on the district pages. I've moved some major museums to district pages, but seeing the quoted sentence makes me wonder if I should have. Is the quoted sentence right, in which case the major museums should be left (or moved back) to the Athens city page, or should the quoted sentence as well as the museum listings be removed from the city page? And if all museums should be moved to district pages, then what should there be under the Museums heading on the city page? Sailsetter 12:57, 29 March 2008 (EDT)

I'd suggest that you do leave in the "must sees," but only as explicit pointers to the districts. So something like: "Athens has an incredible number of world-class museums. In particular, no visitor should miss the Museum X in Athens/District A or the Museum Y in Athens/District B. You'll likely also want to devote a good half-day to exploring the many museums in Athens/Museumlanddistrict." Then there shouldn't be any confusion (especially with the additional templates suggested above) about where listings are/belong. --Peter Talk 09:36, 30 March 2008 (EDT)
If you can think of a better wording for Template:PrintDistricts I'd be in to clarifying it, but I think we should try and avoid making it any longer than it already is... regarding the see/do sections, the article template as it is indicates that we should mention the obvious like Eiffel Tower in Paris, etc. I don't think these should ever be actual listings using the listings tags and with contact details etc, if we stick to the format it suggests, which would make 1 liners comparable to the current blurbs we right about districts in the district section, then I think it's less confusing. It makes it look like an overview, which it is. I'd even support moving it to paragraph form, so that it's really obvious that it's an intro to the city and not the whole list of things to see.
Regarding the template to go in each section, we've already discussed that here and implemented Template:SeeDistricts for that very purpose – cacahuate talk 21:42, 30 March 2008 (EDT)

Template:Airline

I've started a new template, after consulting with American Airlines and United Airlines. I've used the new template to write Singapore Airlines.

At the Wikitravel:Travellers'_pub, I was given some articles to peruse about past discussions on airlines. Since the few we have seem to be here to stay, I would like to ask for comments about this template, positive or negative. Having a template will allow justification to clean up the monstrous glossy brochure at Silverjet to give an actual article. Thanks for your comments. --Rifleman 82 12:48, 30 April 2008 (EDT)

Seems good to me, although perhaps "Classes of travel" should be merged in with the "Aircraft" section, as per American Airlines#Aircraft? PerryPlanet 13:30, 30 April 2008 (EDT)
I think a cope section in there can be a good idea. Information for disabled travellers are not always readily available. Some airlines allow guide dog aboard, some do not. Some give discounts to the disabled or their companions; many people don't know this and pay the full fair when they could have paid up to half less. It can also be used for general things things like: the blankets provided by this airline are really just to small, make sure you take your own if you want a comfortable night --Nick 18:17, 30 April 2008 (EDT)
That's great! Should Template:Airline be added to the list of templates? Or is there another more thorough list of article templates? JuCo 20:40, 25 July 2008 (EDT)
My thought is that we've never reached a consensus on whether or not to allow airline articles at all... creating a template for them validates their existence. It is a nice template though, if we do allow them – cacahuate talk 19:22, 27 July 2008 (EDT)
Since this template has gone through a VFD process, here is an archive of the content for future reference:
'''Airline_name''' is an airline which serves primarily [[region]].

==Key airports==

==Aircraft==

==Frequent flyer program==

==Lounges==

==Alliances==

==Contact==
-- Ryan • (talk) • 19:38, 4 September 2011 (EDT)

Gobbledeguck

We've got a bunch of <!--subst:pagename--> gobbledeguck at the bottom of our article templates, which gets added to all new articles. I don't find that this helps me enter information any more quickly (it's actually quicker to just delete it and type my own info in), and I must assume that seeing all that unexplained code must be intimidating for new users. I'd like to get rid of it, any objections? --Peter Talk 11:12, 11 September 2008 (EDT)

Wholeheartedly agree, it's easier to add interlanguage links from scratch than to alter those hidden ones – cacahuate talk 12:15, 11 September 2008 (EDT)
I think we should include [[Wikipedia:{{{PAGENAME}}}]] by default though, as this almost always works and is often useful. Jpatokal 19:37, 27 December 2008 (EST)


Article Template Headings . . .

From Wikitravel:Travellers'_pub

Hey! I totally understand if you don't want to go through with this, but I have been thinking maybe some headers in templates for articles should be changed. Some that come to mind:

  • Buy - Shopping, is more general. Buy just seems more as specific items you cant get anywhere else or specific stores, which are fine, but it isnt the whole thing.
  • Drink - Nightlife - just seems more of what drink is really about. It helps travelers know that this isn't about cafés or smoothies, but alcohol.
  • Sleep - Accommodation, no real reason, just sounds more appropriate.
  • Eat, this one is difficult. I came up with a few but I am not sure, maybe Eat is just fine.. It thought: Food, Food and Coffee, Cafés/Restaurants, Food and Non Alcoholic Drinks, Cuisine.

Fine to disagree or if you think theres better words. Now, I am not saying everyone must go back and change every article if it is agreed upon, but if you see it, change it, and perhaps have it as automatic template for new. Anyways, what do you think? edmontonenthusiast [ee] .T.A.L.K. 18:50, 16 December 2008 (EST).

I'd read through this first, since this issue has been discussed in great detail. --Peter Talk 18:56, 16 December 2008 (EST)
Perhaps we need a summary of "What the section names mean", outside of the current article templates. Its one of the first things people need to know to understand and contribute to a guide. Is there a article already somewhere, that I've never noticed? --Inas 19:24, 16 December 2008 (EST)
Good idea, Inas. edmontonenthusiast [ee] .T.A.L.K. 18:17, 23 December 2008 (EST).
I'd say the best place to direct someone would be to the Wikitravel:Small city article template. But Wikitravel:Where you can stick it article goes over the issue in the most depth. Or did you have something else in mind? --Peter Talk 20:24, 16 December 2008 (EST)
Wikitravel:Small city article template misses some, like Cope, Stay Healthy, etc. To find what they all mean, you may have to go through nearly all of the templates (even after you decided that the templates was the right place to look). Wikitravel:Where you can stick it gives the reverse. Given a topic, it directs to a heading. I'm thinking of a Where it is stuck, mapping headings to what they mean. --Inas 21:48, 16 December 2008 (EST)
I have also noticed the lack of such documentation, aside from the "reverse index" on Wikitravel:Where you can stick it. (That section is a good start, but not comprehensive.) The templates have some documentation but focus on the difference among the templates, rather than the similarities. LtPowers 10:23, 17 December 2008 (EST)
I think Get out and Drink are the two most misunderstoof headers. If I could just fix these two, I would rename Get out, as Where next?, and I would rename Drink as Nightlife. Just edited the Punta Cana article, where the Get out section covers bus trips back to the airport, duty free allowances, etc. --Inas 18:15, 23 December 2008 (EST)
"Where next?" is by far the best suggestion I've seen for renaming "Get out"; it's not a verb, but it is crystal clear. Anybody else in favor? I could probably whip up a bot to change 'em all if we get consensus on this. Jpatokal 01:09, 24 December 2008 (EST)
Nah, I don't support it for two reasons: 1) I think putting daytrips under such a heading would be weird, and 2) the question format makes it sound like it belongs to that set of headers which get proposed all the time, such as "Where to eat", "What to see", "Where to sleep", etc. Texugo 01:18, 24 December 2008 (EST)
My support to "Where next?"; I do think that it covers daytrips as well. And why 2) is a problem at all? --DenisYurkin 05:52, 24 December 2008 (EST)
2) is a problem for me, because it doesn't match the other headers we have at all-- what we currently have is a set of imperative verbs, and as such, they all match. Weighing the aesthetic nicety of that against the slight improvement in usability for first-time contributors and the huge pain in the ass it would be to get them all change, I just don't see it. Nope. Texugo 05:59, 24 December 2008 (EST)
It would, or at least should, actually be quite painless to do with a bot. And that heading causes so much trouble that that I'd be willing to sacrifice a little aesthetic for a lot of usability. The second-best name I've seen is Gorilla's "Move on", but that's not quite as clear.
Also, I was under the impression that you're not supposed to put daytrips under Get out, which should be reserved for next sleepable (article) destinations? This should also be hammered out while we're at it. Jpatokal 11:50, 24 December 2008 (EST)
I think it's "anything that is nearby but not covered in the rest of the article." If it's a daytrip to a place close by that doesn't have its own article, then it should be in "Do" or "See"; if it's a daytrip to another location that does have an article, then it should be mentioned in "Get Out". Speaking of "Get Out", I like "Move On"; I'm starting to notice increasing confusion about "Get Out". LtPowers 19:18, 29 December 2008 (EST)
I wasn't involved in the creation of the original headings, but I've never seen a problem with them, nor have I seen a set of replacements that don't have an equal or greater number of potential issues. That said, "Where next?" has a certain charm as a replacement for "Get out", and obviously "Move on" is fine by me. Gorilla Jones 00:23, 31 December 2008 (EST)

I think Drink should be renamed Nightlife. I mean, it can be confusing as to what type of drinks are there. Where to grab a smoothie or hit up a café? What section? Eat or Drink? It is a bit confusing and a few articles have changed it to nightlife. I am in favour of that because it is one word and well...makes sense. edmontonenthusiast [ee] .T.A.L.K. 14:38, 29 December 2008 (EST).

But it's not a verb, which is half the point. LtPowers 19:18, 29 December 2008 (EST)
Why does it have to be? I don't see it have to be a verb, like it shouldn't have to match the other words in every aspect. Plus this avoids confusion. edmontonenthusiast [ee] .T.A.L.K. 20:20, 29 December 2008 (EST).
Drink includes not only where to drink, but also what to drink and sometimes how to drink. If you changed it to Nightlife you'd no longer have a convenient place to describe what Inca Cola or Guaraná are or tell that Mongolians drink a lot of yak milk or describe how to participate properly in a Japanese tea ceremony.
Also before this discussion becomes a complete rehash of what has been said in the past, a couple of you need to sit down and read this and this. This discussion has been going on for years. Texugo 03:54, 30 December 2008 (EST)

New discussion

Anyone want to revisit this? Before the discussion got derailed, it seemed we had consensus from everyone that 'Get out' is a clunker, and we had a few users in favor of 'Move on' as a replacement, with nobody having voiced an objection as yet. (I'm not sure I deserve credit for that one, actually — looking back at the legendary Obihiro freakout above, I think 'Move on' was Jpatokal's invention.) Gorilla Jones 20:28, 26 June 2009 (EDT)

How about "Be gone"? =) LtPowers 22:48, 26 June 2009 (EDT)
I haven't quite decided what I think yet, I don't mind What's next or Move on, but I really don't seem them as major improvements either. But here's a thought.... why not, at least for new articles (since it could be added into the template) add the section descriptions hidden by <!-- and -->. So get out, when you edit it, would show Information about nearby destinations that would serve as a good "next stop." Provide a brief description of other nearby destination suggestions, neighboring cities or day-trip ideas. Don't duplicate information that's up in "Get in."
Also note that currently day trips should be in get out, not see/do – cacahuate talk 13:05, 28 June 2009 (EDT)
Day trips to other destinations with articles should be in "Get out". But if it's not its own destination, it belongs in the body of the article. Jpatokal 23:16, 28 June 2009 (EDT)
What about just Next? If fits in with the feel of the other headings. I think Where next, What's next and Move on are all better than Get out. Move on could have the issue of people putting departure tax and how to get a taxi to the airport into in there, much the same as Get Out. --inas 23:37, 28 June 2009 (EDT)
Although "Move on" sounds fine, I think Cacahuate's proposal could be helpful. I'll admit, when I first thought about editing the site, I wasn't sure exactly what was a "See" versus a "Do", whether or not "Drink" was meant for bars alone or whether nightclubs went there, and other stupid mistakes. I just started browsing other articles until I got a feel for what sorts of things belonged in each category. For the in-and-out contributors, there probably isn't much that can be done, because they don't stay long enough to bother looking at guidelines, but for those who want to edit more, I think it's a learn-as-you-go sort of thing, and there are already pages that explain these things for those who don't know. Although I'm not a huge fan of the hidden text, if confusion about that section is really too much, I think it might be the best way to address it. ChubbyWimbus 00:22, 29 June 2009 (EDT)

Respect sections

Earlier I proposed we simply do away with respect sections altogether, since they attract so much nonsense. That didn't fly, so here's another idea—change the name from respect to "Customs." The downside is that this moves away from our general imperative section header format. The upside is that this might help people to stop bashing other cultures and reminding people not to use foul language, mock national tragedies, spit, etc, and help refocus the sections on what they're actually supposed to cover. (Though truth be told, I still think the section could be done away with, and this type of information could all go under a "customs" section of "understand.") --Peter Talk 16:30, 26 April 2009 (EDT)

I am very, very much in favor of doing away with the 'Respect' section entirely, for the reasons Peter has identified above. I do like the suggestion of transplanting any useful prose in those sections to a 'Customs' sub-section of 'Understand'. Gorilla Jones 17:22, 26 April 2009 (EDT)
I also voice support for doing away with it or renaming it and moving it under the "Understand" section. Though, I think the latter may be the better option. -- Sapphire(Talk) • 18:31, 26 April 2009 (EDT)
I think we are running up against a problem with human nature, rather than one with wikitravel naming. People just seem to like writing this stuff, and seem happy enough to write about it in any section. Regard the United Kingdom region as an example, with more edits done on what to call people, than on any other section. I think a Customs section beneath Understand would just relocate what people currently put in respect to another section. I'm in favour of another approach. I think we have a travel topic Respect, and we list the bleeding obvious points of customs respect in there. If any of these things are then mentioned in individual articles, we just delete them, and point people to the general respect article. Much like Stay safe travel topic, contains things about staying safe that don't need repeating in every article. People seem to love generalising about cultures, and I don't think section naming or deleting is going to stop anybody. It will just move it to an area where it is harder to manage. --Inas 21:15, 26 April 2009 (EDT)
I have to agree with Inas here; if anything, I'm afraid that a name as misleading as "Customs" will lead to people adding in duty-free allowances, solemn admonitions not to bring in heroin, and tales of getting rubber gloves up the pooper at JFK. Jpatokal 05:09, 8 May 2009 (EDT)
Agree with the disagree with the name. I like Inas' idea. If we need a new name, "Local Customs" would be less ambiguous. --Jonboy 10:22, 8 May 2009 (EDT)
"Local customs" would be much better. I think it gets the point across about what type of information we are looking for much better than "respect." Chances are a contributor would not think that "avoiding making insults about a country's recent national tragedies" is a "local custom." I don't see why moving this section to a subsection of understand would make it harder to manage—on the contrary, the more precise naming would make it a lot easier to remove off-topic nonsense. --Peter Talk 16:43, 8 May 2009 (EDT)
I don't feel tooo strongly about it, but I don't really see what will be accomplished by moving it to a subsection. If there's something relevant to say, then it should be said, and any fluff should be chopped out. IMO the effort spent moving the battle to a new battleground could just be spent continuing to chop out fluff, as we do for pretty much every section of the site. I'm all for this section remaining optional though, it should only pop up, wherever it is decided that is should pop up, when there's really something useful to say that people need to know – cacahuate talk 11:07, 9 May 2009 (EDT)
The advantages really come from changing the name to something more precise, which is facilitated by moving away from a top-level header. Yes, we can edit poor content when we see it, but it's even more important to give the site architecture that discourages the addition of poor content (and encourages good content). The "respect" heading, clearly, is encouraging poor content—the evidence is on basically every country article we have, even the ones that are heavily patrolled/edited by regular users. The U.S.A. respect section, for example, would need to be rewritten to be moved to "local customs," and that pleasantly would involve the removal of some of the more pointless information there.
This proposal (move respect to a subsection of understand, entitles "local customs") has very clear support from some, and vague wishy washy support/opposition from others. Just so I understand better where we are, does anyone think that it would not be an improvement to do this? --Peter Talk 16:48, 9 May 2009 (EDT)
What is the purpose of the section? I see it as a section where we include the ways in which at traveller must alter their normal behaviour in order to travel comfortably, and not offend the local culture.
The problem is, people use this section to write sometimes bigoted, and often simplistic views. It is not that they don't understand the section title.
Changing the heading would achieve little. It may get rid of a few of the comments about jokes about terrorist attacks, but it isn't going to get rid of the personal space, hygiene, queue jumping silliness. They would still fit perfectly under local customs heading.
It also opens a new can of worms, in terms of enumerating local customs. The trivia that people could think of to write under local customs, far outweighs what they could do under respect.
We have other headings that are hard to understand Contact, Get out, are often misunderstood. People get the hang of them over time, with clear guidelines. Respect is best managed with editing out the guff, and clear guidelines for writers. Changing the name would only introduce new issues with describing local customs, that I don't think is of overall benefit to the guide, or reduces any work for editors. --Inas 18:27, 9 May 2009 (EDT)
Yes, agreed. I understand PF's point, but I don't think anything has been proposed as of yet that is an improvement – cacahuate talk 20:53, 10 May 2009 (EDT)
I agree. I am skeptical that a name change would have enough positive effect to counterweigh the exception to the section naming convention. I am not inherently averse to placing it under "Understand", however; I don't know that it would help, but it does make some sense. Since there is confusion about the purpose of specific article sections, I think this article (Wikitravel:Article templates) should run down all of the common article sections and explain what each one is about.
Ooh, what if, instead of "Local customs", we used "Conform"? Then it's still an imperative, right? =) LtPowers 11:18, 14 May 2009 (EDT)

Talk on non-region/country articles

Occasionally, city articles have need of a Talk section (see Rochester (New York)#Talk and Pittsburgh#Talk). Should these be separate top-level sections as they are in country articles, or subsections of Understand because they're smaller and less important? LtPowers 11:18, 14 May 2009 (EDT)

I don't feel too strongly either way, but maybe for consistency just leave it as its own section – cacahuate talk 11:38, 23 May 2009 (EDT)
I agree that it should be its own section, if it's present and can't be covered in an infobox or a line or two of Understand. But it should be used only if absolutely necessary — in Pittsburgh, for example, I'd question the urgency of the average traveler's need to know how to communicate "rubber band" to a native. I don't want this to lead to every single U.S. city article adding a Talk section with whether they say "soda" or "pop". Sometimes a travel guide has to leave some local color for the traveler to discover on their own. Gorilla Jones 12:05, 23 May 2009 (EDT)
Pittsburghese is pretty unique and worth discussing, although you're right that an infobox may be more appropriate. =) LtPowers 13:08, 23 May 2009 (EDT)

Required sections

This page states that "Get in," "Get around," "See", "Eat", and "Sleep" are required sections in any article. Yet there is at least one star article (Chicago/Near North) that does not have a "Get around" section. Is this requirement outdated? Should we exempt district articles? Should we demote Near North? LtPowers 10:25, 23 May 2009 (EDT)

Looks either outdated or ill-coordinated to me. The Wikitravel:District_article_template has no such section. --Peter Talk 10:32, 23 May 2009 (EDT)
Should be exempted — I find "Get around" to be quite meaningless for most city districts, there's rarely anything more you can write than "walk or take the subway/train/tram for two stops". Jpatokal 10:33, 23 May 2009 (EDT)
For some districts, a description of the layout of the district could be useful, but I can see that for some it would just be redundant. LtPowers 11:30, 23 May 2009 (EDT)
Are we making a district article that should be read in isolation, without the reading of the top level article? I would have thought a Get Around section would be useful, even if it is a little bare, or just refers to the city level subway information. Knowing whether you need a car, can take the metro, or can walk is always useful for every district. I guess my point is the info doesn't need to be substantial, or different from the city level article to be useful --inas 20:09, 24 May 2009 (EDT)
I used to write get around sections, before I saw that they are not on the template, but now I think a section separate from "get in" isn't usually necessary. If a district is very large (like a huge suburban amalgamation), then adding a get around section is probably useful. But otherwise the routes in are usually the same as the routes around—and this can be made clear in the prose (example). --Peter Talk 22:00, 24 May 2009 (EDT)
One way in which Get Around and Get In differ in most districts is in walking. One would almost never use "by foot" in a Get In section, but it can be useful in Get Around. I note, for example, that the Chatham-South Shore article you linked doesn't mention how easy or hard it is to walk from place to place. LtPowers 22:04, 24 May 2009 (EDT)
Well, as long as we note whether there are sidewalks, I think travelers can infer how easy or hard it is to walk from place to place with the map. The need for 'Get around' in a district article should be determined on a case-by-case basis. In Chicago/Near North, a 'Get around' section would be totally redundant, for the reasons Jani noted above. Gorilla Jones 23:48, 24 May 2009 (EDT)
I think the examples of Chicago/Near North and Chicago/Chatham-South_Shore, while both comprehensive, could do with a Get around section. If I am a traveller already in the district, I have to search for the information elsewhere in the article, or in another article. The last thing we should do is force redundant sections into articles for the sake of it, but I haven't seen a compelling example where a Get Around section would be unhelpful and out of place. Still, I think we are in essential agreement, we put the heading in the template, and note that it can be omitted if it is not required. If I (or anyone else) can make Chicago district articles better with a Get Around section, I know where the edit button is... --inas 06:32, 25 May 2009 (EDT)
In Near North, shouldn't the "by horse" section be in "Get Around" anyway? LtPowers 09:16, 25 May 2009 (EDT)

Suggestion - Add Latitude Longitude Data

I have found the Wikitravel articles invaluable whilst wandering around South-East Asia, but I have also found that I often need to search using Google Maps or Google Earth, using the placename (of which there are sometimes a number of variants) to try and get a better idea about exactly where the town/attraction is. I believe that some Wikipedia articles now contain the Latitude and Longitude of a location, firstly allowing direct linking to third-party mapping providers, and also allowing mashup engineers to create overlays in Google Earth, etc. allowing people to browse the data in the Wiki using a map as the index (rather than the other way around). -- Lucanos 07:28, 6 June 2009 (EDT)

Already supported (but not used very much), see Wikitravel:Geocoding. Jpatokal 08:46, 6 June 2009 (EDT)

Get around walking

I'm sure we'll get this sorted out soon

I just realized I don't know what the proper subsection header is for walking in a get in/get around section. On foot, by foot? --Peter Talk 02:42, 25 June 2009 (EDT)

By foot sounds okay, is used extensively [3], and it fits in with our other By car, By plane, etc. --inas 02:49, 25 June 2009 (EDT)
I don't have a strong opinion either way, but I think "On foot" is a little more grammatical, and is about 4x more popular according to Google. Jpatokal 03:09, 25 June 2009 (EDT)
I'd use 'On foot'. Gorilla Jones 09:40, 25 June 2009 (EDT)
"By foot" best matches the other subsections. LtPowers 09:58, 25 June 2009 (EDT)
I lean "by foot"—it's common enough where we might as well stick with our "by" convention. --Peter Talk 15:01, 25 June 2009 (EDT)
by :) – cacahuate talk 15:35, 25 June 2009 (EDT)
While it's a public secret that my English skills is somewhat lagging, I prefer By too for consistency. --Stefan (sertmann) Talk 15:39, 25 June 2009 (EDT)

I think that's careless use of language. The reason bikes, cars, and planes are preceded by 'by' is that they are tools, and feet are not. Implied in "by plane" is the verb and article "taking a" (or, if you prefer, "using a") — Get in by taking a plane, get around by using a bike. You would not, however, refer to taking your foot or using your foot to go somewhere. You'd say "walk". (And for that matter, 4x is a considerably greater degree of usage.) Gorilla Jones 18:44, 25 June 2009 (EDT)

I'll add, by the way, that Strunk and White's "Elements of Style" uses "on foot". Gorilla Jones 18:48, 25 June 2009 (EDT)
Consider - How am I getting there? I'll just use my feet. Sure, it is a casual use of the language, a more formal response would be to say Walking, but you certainly can refer to using your feet to go somewhere, without breaking any grammatical rules. --inas 19:28, 25 June 2009 (EDT)
It's wouldn't be too hard to argue that Strunk and White would disaprove of many of our section headers ;) --Peter Talk 20:09, 25 June 2009 (EDT)
PF took the words out o my mouth.... but, how about just "Walk"? It breaks the formatting of the subsection, but fits into the greater style of our headers – cacahuate talk 21:03, 25 June 2009 (EDT)
Well then there would be impetus to change the others to "Fly", "Drive", "Bike", etc. Which is fine if that's what we want, but there's no reason to make just one of the headings an imperative. =) LtPowers 22:22, 25 June 2009 (EDT)
I'd be fine with 'Walk'. This particular sub-heading shouldn't match the others; it signifies the difference between using something for transport and transporting yourself.
inas misunderstands my previous statement. There is no grammatical rule that's broken here. You can say "I ate the table" and it's grammatically correct, with a subject, verb, and object all lined up, but it isn't a good way to convey that you just had dinner. I just don't agree that "I'm using my feet" is commonly used to indicate that you're walking somewhere. Gorilla Jones 22:59, 25 June 2009 (EDT)
Just to add my two cents, I also prefer "On foot". I always looked at it as finishing the sentence. Get around... by car, by plane... on foot. We get around on foot. "Walk" doesn't finish the sentence, either. It sounds awkward just like "by foot". Maybe that's simplistic logic, but I thought that was why it was written that way. ChubbyWimbus 00:20, 26 June 2009 (EDT)
When Messrs Strunk and White are bought into the discussion, I usually assume we are talking grammar. They also dwell on clarity and conciseness, but I really don't think those things are at issue here; people will understand what we mean either way, and the word count is the same. Hop on your bike, hail a taxi, or just use your feet. Go by foot, go on foot. The former is consistent, the latter is more common, but they are both grammatically correct and clear enough. The choice is simply between consistency in the text of the guide and adopting a more common expression.
I think Walk - jars. Although Walk, Fly, Ride, would be more in line with the second level headings, I find changing the imperative tone for the third level headings actually softens and breaks up the text a bit, a relief from the abruptness of the second level. --inas 00:42, 26 June 2009 (EDT)
Are you positive "get around by foot" is grammatically correct? I've never heard or used that expression, and since google is a popular reference for this, it returns on 815 results for "get around by foot" and "get around on foot" returns 12,900 results. If clarity and conciseness are not the issue, then using intelligent English versus a sloppy, colloquial, unpopular form of speech is the issue, and I am surprised so many people prefer being consistent on the use of "by" versus intelligent speech/writing. ChubbyWimbus 02:31, 26 June 2009 (EDT)
Well, there are numerous tours "by foot", 2 million+ google hits, check it out in wiktionary [4]. Or at dictionary.com [5]. So, yes, I'm fairly sure it is correct. I really don't think damning it as unintelligent and sloppy is fair. Our headings already aren't the most popular way of saying things. The aim is to be distinctive, I think, rather than common. --inas 02:44, 26 June 2009 (EDT)
Okay, so my word choice may have been a bit harsh, and my google search used Wikitravel's exact wording rather than "by foot" versus "on foot" (which I still believe highlights how uncommon the phrase is, particularly with WT's wording), but... I don't think Wikitravel needs to necessarily be distinctive on everything. There's no reason to be different just for the sake of being different. I'm sure there are other ways WT can distinguish itself. Some things are common for a reason.
I agree with you that just saying "walk", "fly", etc. seem abrasive combined with the headings.
Even if getting around by foot is grammatically possible, I just don't think I can agree that it's really an accepted way of speaking/writing. Maybe I should have said using "by" instead of "on" sounds sloppy and unintelligent to me. I guess my point goes back to what Gorilla Jones stated. ChubbyWimbus 03:19, 26 June 2009 (EDT)
Also worth noting — "on foot" is in greater use on Wikitravel already. A search for "on foot" returns 1508 articles, while "by foot" returns 771. Gorilla Jones 08:18, 26 June 2009 (EDT)

Goodness, I haven't seen this much discussion on a topic in a long time. =) Don't we use "by thumb" for hitchhiking? Isn't that analogous? LtPowers 08:40, 26 June 2009 (EDT)

Otherwise yes, but I haven't seen anybody travel "on thumb" yet... Jpatokal 10:31, 26 June 2009 (EDT)
Actually I think I saw that from a bus in Mozambique once, but I can't be certain  ;) Another comparison from google [6]. Maybe we need to have a WT8 summit somewhere and hash this out in person? – cacahuate talk 14:55, 26 June 2009 (EDT)
That website is pretty funny. Just to make this debate even more ridiculous, just using "on foot" versus "by foot" still leaves things like "foot by foot" in the mix, but any combination of "travel on foot", "getting around on foot", "get around on foot", versus "by foot", always leaves "on foot" significantly above "by foot". I think common usage is sometimes more important than grammatical possibilities. ChubbyWimbus 16:27, 26 June 2009 (EDT)
We could have a WT8 summit to settle it, sure. Just one thing — how should we get there? I don't want to get in by plane, bus, bike, car, boat, taxi, train, or thumb. Surely there must be some other way... Gorilla Jones 18:24, 26 June 2009 (EDT)
Duh, I would "Walk" – cacahuate talk 19:06, 26 June 2009 (EDT)
Can we all agree to go with the result by coin toss? Jpatokal can toss, for fence sitting. Heads by foot, tails on foot? --inas 21:17, 28 June 2009 (EDT)
So this matter is being resolved either by heads or on tails. But then, will the result be reported to us by a computer, or on a computer? PerryPlanet Talk 13:56, 29 June 2009 (EDT)
Jani, pretty sure Inas just called you a tosser – cacahuate talk 13:04, 29 June 2009 (EDT)
Them's fighting words! But seriously, my preference (by a small margin) remains "On foot". Jpatokal 23:46, 29 June 2009 (EDT)

what is a city?

Swept in from pub:

The main page talks of Kilkenny being Ireland's smallest city. But by the Wikitravel definition anywhere is a "city" so any village with 500 people qualifies for the city template. I guess this confusion is partly the result of different usage in the US and Europe. I tend to write of towns not cities and that seems to be the usage for Kilkenny in that it is the smalled connurbation that qualifies it to be called a city in Ireland. Have you tried to resolve this confusion before? Perhaps in addition to a meta-region template we also need a " small city" template? Shep 13:07, 17 October 2009 (EDT)

City definitions in different parts of the world are certainly confusing. As you rightly say though, just about any inhabited place is a city as far as WT is concerned and that makes life easy. Do you mean a different a small city template to the one here? --Burmesedays 13:14, 17 October 2009 (EDT)
Well, the small city template you link me to seems to be the city template that is provided for any new article so I hope you can understand my confusion. For me, as an Englishman, a city is probably 100,000 plus (the original definition was a place that had a cathedral). For American readers it must be confusing to read that Kilkenny is the smallest city when they refer to any small town as a city. My concern is therefore for consistency more than anything else. For small places I think you could probably drop Get Around, merge See and Do, (See or Do) and perhaps merge Eat and Drink. Shep 13:31, 17 October 2009 (EDT)

Try comparing them side by side big vs small, there are quite a few differences; Understand Cope sections are missing, and Get in, Eat and Sleep sections are not broken into subsections. --Stefan (sertmann) Talk 13:39, 17 October 2009 (EDT)

The template when you begin a new article doesn't say Small City, it says City. I was comparing the City template with the Small City template you linked me to. I believe we need a Smaller City template as well.Shep 02:03, 18 October 2009 (EDT)
I don't think there is an issue here. There is no strict policy saying you can't have an understand section for a village, or you must have a cope section in cities over 1 million. A small village with lots of attractions and accommodation may have subsections, and a large city with few visitor facilities may have none. Pick the best fit template for the city/village/town you are creating, and pick out the other bits you need. --inas 03:25, 18 October 2009 (EDT)

Cities, other destinations and interesting villages

What do we want from the "Other Destinations" list in relation to the "Cities" list? It seems like we just sum up the largest cities of a country/region in the cities list. The "other destinations" is usually a list of stand-alone national parks, far-to-reach archaeological structures and islands.

But some countries have some popular small towns and villages -- this group usually gets left out and cannot be included anywhere. An example is the Netherlands -- many travelers would visit one of the typical Dutch villages in the Waterland and Zaan Region (either Volendam, Edam, Broek in Waterland, Monnickendam, Marken, Urk, etc), but none of them are listed. That's because they are "cities", and thus belong in the cities list. But that list is already filled with 9 of the biggest cities of the country, some of them probably less interesting. I think other countries also have problems with this, such as Poland where someone made a division of metropolitan cities and "little pearls" [7]. Is there any way to solve this? Globe-trotter 23:14, 22 December 2009 (EST)

If there are cities in the Cities list that are "less interesting", replace them! Otherwise, if there are a bunch of little towns that are collectively interesting, include their region in the Other Destinations list; it's bending the rule slightly but I think it's justifiable (as long as it's not a top-level subregion). LtPowers 09:28, 23 December 2009 (EST)
We have already bent that rule a bit as suggested with Bali (after discussion) and I am sure elsewhere. The grouping of small villages that is Amed for example makes a nice OD. I would fully support such moves. --Burmesedays 09:32, 23 December 2009 (EST)
I'm a big fan of putting information on where to go, what to see, that doesn't fit into the little navigational lists at the top, into a subsection of "See," like "Historic villages" or something of that sort. --Peter Talk 14:23, 23 December 2009 (EST)


Get out, again

Since this all seem to be up for discussion at the moment, I would like to propose a phased renaming of the "Get out" section. If you look through our articles, quite few of these sections seems to actually contain what they where meant for. I also remember from my first edits here that I myself found it confusing what to put there. I'm not quite sure what would be a good replacement "Where Next?" "Nearby destinations/places" "Go here" or something along those lines seem to convey the point much better. --Stefan (sertmann) talk 15:17, 23 December 2009 (EST)

I seem to recall from previous discussion that there is little problem getting a consensus to change this. It all seems to fall apart when we try to get a consensus on an alternative. Perhaps we need to get together the previously proposed alternatives, and structure the discussion towards actually picking one. --inas 15:24, 23 December 2009 (EST)
Ian is quite right. Someone will also need to provide a script before we'll find support for a change.
Previous discussions:
Suggested replacements:
  • Nearby
  • Get away
  • Excursions
  • Daytrip
  • Get off (problematic!)
  • Move on
  • Nearby destinations
  • Get out and about
  • Onward
  • Next stop
  • Next move
  • Going further
I'll add a Go next, which I think keeps our imperative verb style and is really clear.
If we're serious about changing this, I would advise participants in this discussion to eliminate unacceptable options and be willing to accept any one of the several better ones, rather than choose only one favored change. Hopefully that would make a new consensus more feasible. Personally I like Move on, Onward, and Go next. --Peter Talk 16:11, 23 December 2009 (EST)
I'm fine with anything that's an imperative, including the current option. LtPowers 16:22, 23 December 2009 (EST)
Wow, hadn't seen those discussions, interesting read. Bus since Even isn't around anymore, it would seem easier to find consensus for a change. I like Nearby, Next Stop and Onward --Stefan (sertmann) talk 17:01, 23 December 2009 (EST)
I like Move on and Onward. Part of the discussion is that this wouldn't cover daytrips (as then you move on, but also move back the same day). Another option could be Go on. The Dutch Wikitravel uses "Rondom" which means something like "Around" or "Surrounding". Globe-trotter 17:17, 23 December 2009 (EST)
See also the discussion at #Article Template Headings . . .. If we are going to change it, lets change it to something that makes people put the right stuff in the section. As I said above, I like Where next? As it asks the question we want answered in the section, and you don't need to read the doco to understand what to put there. I dislike Nearby, and Out and About, Excursions, and Daytrip, as they don't convey accurately what the section is all about. Get away, Move on, and Onward have the same problems as Get out, that is it just as sensible to put How information in there, but we actually want Where information. I could live with Go Next, as it fits with the rest. I could also live with the other Next headings. --inas 17:31, 23 December 2009 (EST)
For the same reasons as Inas, I prefer Where next? --Burmesedays 01:03, 3 January 2010 (EST)
Hmmm...Where Next? is good and it conveys the info we want (and it's looking like my favorite so far), but I could see newcomers adding their travel itineraries or putting down destinations that are far away, like listing every destination accessible from a major city's airport. Then again, some Get out sections by neccesity have destinations that aren't exactly "nearby", which is why I'm not sure I want Nearby, Excursions, Daytrip, or any others like that. Is there something that can convey both "Where" (as opposed to "How") and "Nearest"? PerryPlanet Talk 13:02, 3 January 2010 (EST)
I seem to recall making a suggestion at one point for "Go away".  ;) LtPowers 09:18, 3 January 2010 (EST)

We really ought to try bringing this to a head, as the Get out section is probably the largest source of (understandable) confusion at Wiktitravel. Let's list the favoured alternatives from the comments above:

  • Where next?
  • Go next
  • Move on

--Burmesedays 10:51, 10 March 2010 (EST)

My quick take on those three: 1) not an imperative, jars with our style; 3) still vague, could mean "how" to move on rather than "to where"; 2) conveys the meaning clearly enough, is an imperative. I say Go next. --Peter Talk 10:57, 10 March 2010 (EST)
Using the metric of "for which of these would I not be suggesting a change if they were in place before I joined the site", I'd say either "Go next", "Move on", or "Go away." LtPowers 18:41, 10 March 2010 (EST)
Of the three I think "Where next?" is the least bad - it differs from the imperative style used in other headings, but I don't personally think it's all that important to have all imperative headings, and it's the clearest of the three in conveying what the section is for. "Go next" just looks... improper is I guess the best way to encapsulate my thoughts - it looks like poor English. "Move on" has the same problems of the current "Get out" in that it's not entirely clear that it refers to nearby destinations.
Long ago when Evan roamed the site and "External links" was still a part of the standard template I had proposed simply calling this section "Nearby", and I would still prefer something along that line. It isn't an imperative, but neither is "Regions", "Cities", etc, and I personally think it's more important to have clear headings rather than to try and wedge every heading into an imperative. -- Ryan • (talk) • 19:43, 10 March 2010 (EST)
"Nearby" does have the advantage of being easy to understand. ChubbyWimbus 23:55, 9 April 2010 (EDT)

My votes would be for:

1 Nearby destinations
2 Next stop
3 Where next?
4 Nearby

Personally I don't think we should be too concerned about the "imperative" thing. I don't think people really care about what grammatical form the word takes, as long a the meaning is clear. I've been using WT for about 12 months now and I didn't even notice the WT imperative style until I started to read these discussions! Also, I suggest that we should rename the "Get In" section to clearly indicate that it is actually for information about arriving AND leaving the destination. I suggest "Get In / Get Out", "Get In, Get Out" or "Get In and Out". Cheers, Lturner 16:02, 11 August 2010 (EDT)

"Nearby destinations" is a nice complement to the "Other destinations" header in the region article template and one that I'd be in favor of. That said, for a change this massive we'll need consensus with a large number of users weighing in, something that we haven't achieved at any time when this issue has been raised over the past 4-5 years. -- Ryan • (talk) • 16:29, 11 August 2010 (EDT)
I support a change to "Nearby destinations", --ClausHansen 17:02, 11 August 2010 (EDT)
Support for "Nearby [destinations]" or whatever else others agree upon--we definitely need to rename GetOut as it's very confusing now.
Also, support renaming GetIn to GetInOut or whatever else variation mentioned by Lturner above. --DenisYurkin 17:24, 11 August 2010 (EDT)
I strongly oppose moving away from the imperative style that has served Wikitravel well as a distinctive trademark for many years. I also oppose changing "Get In" to "Get In and Out". That will leave the traveler wondering "why are they telling me how to leave before I've even gotten in?" LtPowers 18:44, 11 August 2010 (EDT)
LtPowers, not all the headings are imperative/infinitive verb forms as it is. "Regions", "Cities", "Other Destinations" and "Districts" are exceptions to this. Do you think we should change them? It makes sense to use them, because these sections are describing places, not actions....the "where" not the "how". Which is excactly what the "Get Out" section is supposed to be. It makes more sense to use nouns not verbs for these sections. Your second point, there is plenty of information in the "Get In" sections that deals with leaving the destinations. I agree the arrival and leaving info should be grouped together because there is so much overlap, but the heading should clearly reflect that. Lturner 19:34, 11 August 2010 (EDT)
"Regions", "Cities", "Other Destinations" and "Districts" are in place to allow navigation of our geographical hierarchy. "Get out" is not, and it should be more than the simple list the other sections are. The consonance of "Get in", "Get around", and "Get out" is aesthetically appealing (although I understand that the "Get out" section is not actually symmetric with the "Get in" section, and so I'm willing to accept another imperative in place of "Get out"). "Get In and Out" is cumbersome and unappealing. LtPowers 20:51, 11 August 2010 (EDT)
The majority of "Get Out" sections I've seen are just lists. What else is it supposed to be, and where are some examples of this? In some of my first edits I put some "leaving" information (ie stuff that was specific to getting away, not getting in) into a "Get Out" sections and people moved it up to "Get In". It's currenty very confusing to the new user and new contributor. Lturner 03:55, 12 August 2010 (EDT)
I'm not going to weigh in on a change to "Get out" at the moment, but I can safely say I am never going to support "Get In and Out". The information for getting out might belong in Get In, but Get In sections are written from the perspective of arriving at the destination. To change the header to "Get In and Out" would mean adjusting the language of all the Get In sections. As a more selfish reason, I like how the section headers makes sense as a narrative; first you "Get In" to the city, then you "See" the sights, then you have to decide where to "Eat", and then you got to "Sleep". PerryPlanet Talk 22:25, 11 August 2010 (EDT)
No love, then, for "Go next"? --Peter Talk 13:49, 12 August 2010 (EDT)
If the problem is that "Get out" is ambiguous then I don't think "Go next" is a huge improvement. It's better, but to my mind it's not nearly enough of an improvement to warrant the effort required to update every article on the site. "Nearby destinations" seems to be the choice that offers the clearest indication of the heading's purpose, it bookends nicely with "Other destinations", and I agree with Lturner's argument that its use is essentially just to list destinations. I'm biased in this discussion though - I've never really gotten the imperative thing, and my preference is that where an imperative gets in the way of clarity then clarity of purpose needs to be the determining factor. -- Ryan • (talk) • 13:57, 12 August 2010 (EDT)
"Go next" is an improvement because it naturally fits with the question-word "where" rather than with "how". One asks "Where do I go next?", not "How do I go next?". It would thus result in fewer attempts to put "how" information into the section. I do not like "Nearby destinations", and not just because it's not an imperative; it's long and not very snappy, which I think is important for the last section on the page, and city articles don't have an "Other destinations" section with which it can appear to bookend. LtPowers 14:13, 12 August 2010 (EDT)
I'll throw in my support for Go next. PerryPlanet Talk 21:44, 12 August 2010 (EDT)
With all respect to those contributors that are very much enamoured of the idea of the WT "imperative style", I have to present the case for the other side one final time. So here it is:
1) The importance of this "imperative style" is being vastly over-rated. Most users of WT probably couldn't care less what the headings look like as long they are simple and the meaning is clear - which is currently not the case for "Get Out". People come here to get up-to-date travel info, not marvel at the consistency of the tense and aspect of the words in section headings.
2) Even if we want to keep an imperative style for the headings that use verbs (which I do agree with), that doesn't mean we have to twist every heading into a verb. Some things are just better described using nouns, like places. We can maintain the imperative verb forms for all headings that use verbs, no problem.
3) What is the purpose of WT, to provide info for travellers or to be aesthetically appealing? Word consonance and aesthetic appeal should not be more important than clarity, as Ryan mentioned above. Form should follow function. Aesthetics should come after clarity where possible.
Having said all of this, if the use of an imperative is non-negotiable, then I would support a change to "Go Next", as it is better than the current label. While I think it's a bit vague and clunky, at least it's not actually confusing to the reader and contributor in the way "Get Out" most definitely is.
Cheers Lturner 13:05, 16 August 2010 (EDT)
Excellent summary, thank you Lturner! --DenisYurkin 15:59, 16 August 2010 (EDT)
Time to revisit this discussion. I was unaware that "Get out" was for places to travel to and stay in next, rather than places to go for day trips from a particular place, as LtPowers and Inas are asserting in the VfD thread on Daqin Pagoda (texugo dissents). I would submit that there is no good reason to keep a confusing subheading, other than pure inertia. I think "Nearby destinations" is probably clearest, but almost any of the changes proposed in this thread would be clearer than "Get out." I'd eliminate "Get off" as an inappropriate phrase (at least in American English), "Get away" as only a bit clearer than "Get out," and "Excursions" and "Day trips" are OK only if we decide that this section is in fact for day trips, not for places to travel to and stay in. Every other alternative word or phrase I've seen in this subthread would be acceptable to me without further discussion. Ikan Kekek 01:13, 5 December 2011 (EST)
My understanding was that there are many different views, but Go next was the closest to consensus. That is that everybody doesn't think it is the best subheading, but I think there is universal consensus that it is acceptable and better than Get out. --Inas 15:38, 5 December 2011 (EST)
Recognizing the voting tends to be discouraged on Wikitravel, in six years there hasn't been agreement on what to change the "Get out" heading to, so this may be a case where a vote would work best to clarify people's preferences. If we give everyone two votes and include "Get out" as one of the options that should hopefully clarify whether there is a strong enough preference to change, and whether or not one option has strong support. That would provide some objective information as to what people prefer, and would then narrow the discussion about whether or not to actually make a change. My two cents. -- Ryan • (talk) • 15:49, 5 December 2011 (EST)
IMO better for each to list not only what they prefer, but what they would accept. My feeling is that there is probably one or two here acceptable by consensus, even though it may be the preference of a few. --Inas 17:06, 5 December 2011 (EST)
Use approval voting, then; for each option, voters can approve or not approve the option, and then the option that gets the most approval is accepted. LtPowers 18:41, 5 December 2011 (EST)
Would it actually be a ridiculous idea to have both a "Go next" section (with suggestions on where to stay next) ánd a Daytrips/nearby destinations one? Get out has always greatly confused me. For many countries nearby towns and villages may be interesting as a daytrip at best, but not a recommended next destination. When making articles about the Netherlands, I've always found it silly that I was told Get out had to be about the villages in the area (very uninteresting for most travelers) and not about recommended next stops, even if they are 1 or 2 hours away (or even more!). Justme 06:47, 6 December 2011 (EST)
My understanding is that if the attractions are commonly visited from that destination, then we can list them in See/Do, even if not strictly within the region boundaries. Get Out in some article suggests next stop destinations can certainly be many days travel away - I know nothing of any 1 or 2 hour limit. Can we take it you agree with Go next??
Philadelphia is 1 hr 20 min by Amtrak train from New York City, so it can be a day trip, but it's clearly another destination. New Haven is 1 hr 45 min by Metro North, but I would not support putting a trip to New Haven in the "See" section of the New York City article; "Get out" or whichever substitute we agree to for that misleading phrase seems to me the appropriate section to mention New Haven.
For the record, I support Justme's suggestion, and it would apply nicely to the Daqin Pagoda, which is over 60 km and over an hours' ride from Xian - a day trip, not a "See" in the city. Though that article already has an "outside the city" section or some such, which also works.
I find "Go next" acceptable, though not that elegant. "Where to go next" is nicer, but I won't insist on the two additional words. Ikan Kekek 15:52, 6 December 2011 (EST)
I think we still have a broader problem of content sorting that is rearing its head in this discussion. But can we all agree that "Go next" is, if not perfect, better than "Get out", and thus do the unthinkable and actually "Get rid" of that hated phrase once and for all? --Peter Talk 06:45, 12 December 2011 (EST)
I remain willing to accept another imperative, but I don't agree that any of them are better than what we use currently. LtPowers 17:03, 12 December 2011 (EST)
You were involved in the the discussion that led to this being revisited, where the ambiguity even to some of our most experienced contributors was apparent. I would have thought less ambiguity was a step in the right direction.
And for the record I agree with Go next, and I think the discussion above represents a consensus for change. --Inas 18:08, 12 December 2011 (EST)
I can live with Go next, but I don't think it lessens the ambiguity that much. A lot of the confusion seems to be around where to stick listings that are outside of a city, so I think clearer guidelines in the article template descriptions would help. Maybe something along the lines of the following could be added to the Get out/Go next description in the city templates:
Do not include listings for attractions and activities outside of a city. These should be listed in the See or Do sections of the nearest city. - Shaund 10:07, 14 December 2011 (EST)

Whatever happened with this discussion? We still have "Get out," and it's still as confusing as ever. People now and then delete the subheading at the end of articles, presumably thinking the phrase is a snide remark about their home town. Should we take a vote on whether or what to replace "Get out" with, or did we already reach a sufficient consensus to change the templates and start editing articles? Ikan Kekek 07:01, 20 April 2012 (EDT)

Given the magnitude of the change I think a vote might be useful before any change is made. Note: I'm not suggesting a vote would be binding, but it would at least clarify people's preferences. I'd suggest that "Get out" be one of the voting options, and that people be asked to rank their top three preferences since no one seems particularly enthusiastic about any one choice. -- Ryan • (talk) • 10:57, 20 April 2012 (EDT)
Ranking (aka instant runoff voting) is complicated to execute and to tabulate. Since our goal is simply to come up with something that everyone can live with we should use approval voting. We provide a full list and everyone states which of the options they can accept. Easy. LtPowers 18:46, 20 April 2012 (EDT)
I'm not super-enthusiastic about "Go next," but I hate "Get out." Where will the vote take place? Ikan Kekek 19:48, 20 April 2012 (EDT)
I'm going to flip flop after reading the above arguments and support "Nearby" over my initial suggestion of "Go next," in particular because Go next does not clearly include simple day trip excursions. The "Get out" section serves a navigational purpose akin to Regions, Cities, and Other destinations, so ditching the imperative actually isn't a break from our style. I prefer "Nearby" to "Nearby destinations," because it is snappier, and just as clear.
I am not comfortable with deciding this via vote, but do think a poll would be useful to test how people feel about the above options. Lets continue the discussion in this thread, and keep the voting in a separate, easy to read section below. --Peter Talk 16:31, 21 April 2012 (EDT)
Yeah, "Nearby destinations" and "Nearby" are better. "Go next" is an awkward phrase. But it's still way clearer than "Get out." Ikan Kekek 17:56, 21 April 2012 (EDT)
"Nearby" lacks the finality of "Go next" or "Get out"; it sounds like a heading that should be under "See" or "Do". It also has the problem that many "Get out" destinations are not actually nearby. Finally, I would like to know why my arguments against trying to impose a ranking system were ignored. I continue to assert that a simple approval poll would produce clearer results and better point the way to a true consensus option than a ranked poll. LtPowers 21:55, 21 April 2012 (EDT)
Nearby is a relative, not an absolute term. I could easily see putting Philadelphia in that category in the New York guide because it's only 1 hour 20 minutes away by Amtrak. And in Texas, "nearby" might be as much as an 8-hour drive. So unless it's truly necessary to make some kind of hard and fast rule about what amount of distance "nearby" is limited to (and I wouldn't favor that), I think the term is more or less as clear as the others in this respect, and certainly clearer in meaning than "Get out." And I cite the fact that I put Philadelphia in the "Get out" section of the New York City guide some time ago, and someone decided to remove it, but then another person put Boston - much further away, but still a possible, though lengthy day trip, or a good several-day side trip - in that section. I thought that was fine and didn't remove it. To summarize: Whatever we call this category, there still will be some disagreements about what distance it should be limited to in which context.
But I can't address why your arguments were ignored. Ikan Kekek 22:16, 21 April 2012 (EDT)
LtPowers, I wasn't ignoring anything—you were opposed to our deciding this question by polling preferences, and I am too. People simply stating their preferences, on the other hand, doesn't seem objectionable, and it's what we have been doing throughout this whole thread. --Peter Talk 15:22, 23 April 2012 (EDT)
I was not opposed to deciding the question by polling preferences. In fact, I think it's the best way to come to a solution that the maximum number of people can accept. But not if it's done the way the poll below is formatted. LtPowers 18:41, 24 April 2012 (EDT)
I agree with LtPowers that a "what you will acccept" poll may be useful. I also think Nearby changes the meaning of the section. Sydney has Auckland as a Go Next, but it doesn't (to me at least) seem nearby. Lets not replace one confusing heading with another equally confusing one. Go Next asks the question we want the section to answer. --Inas 04:01, 6 May 2012 (EDT)
I agree with Inas -- I think Nearby changes the meaning of the section. Where I live, the common next stops are often many hours of driving away (e.g., Vancouver - Okanagan or Vancouver - Rockies, Calgary - Edmonton, Edmonton - Jasper)... so they don't seem "nearby". - Shaund 07:46, 6 May 2012 (EDT)
I'd agree that "nearby" isn't perfect for remote places, but I think most people will understand that it's there as a standard heading, and that the meaning is "here are some of the closest places to visit", even if those places might be a few hundred miles away. -- Ryan • (talk) • 17:10, 2 July 2012 (EDT)
I'm not sure I agree. If "Nearby" is meant to include places a few hundred miles away, it seems almost as confusing as our current "Get out" heading. But my major stumbling block (which I didn't explain well the first time) is I don't think "nearby" is the same as "go next". Nearby, to me, implies places that are close by and likely day trips (although could be destinations in their own right). Go next would be common next stops on a trip where a traveller would be likely to stop and stay a night. I'm not 100% sure what the intent of "Get out" is, but "go next" is closer to what I think it means than "nearby".
Not sure how familiar people are with the Vancouver area, but using it as an example, Nearby places would be Richmond (British Columbia) and the Fraser Valley, but Go next destinations would be Seattle and the Okanagan. Places like Victoria and Whistler could be either Nearby or Go next. -Shaund 17:47, 2 July 2012 (EDT)

Poll

Please state your picks for new names, in order by preference:

User 1 2 3
Peter Talk Onward Go next Nearby
Ikan Kekek Talk Nearby destinations Nearby Go next
Ryan • (talk) • Nearby Nearby destinations -
PerryPlanet talk Nearby Nearby destinations Onward
LtPowers Get out Any imperative Anything that doesn't say "nearby"
inas Go next Next stops Move on
Shaund Go next Next stops Moving on
Vidimian Get out Go next Get out and about
Jonboy Get away Move on Get out
Texugo Get out Any imperative Anything that doesn't say "nearby"
Ravikiran Go next Next stops Move on
AHeneen Nearby Destinations Nearby Daytrips (plural)

Options that have been suggested: "Nearby", "Get away", "Excursions", "Daytrips", "Get off" (problematic!), "Move on", Nearby destinations", "Get out and about", "Onward", "Next stops", "Next moves", "Going further", and the existing "Get out".

Would people like to try the "approval vote" that LtPowers suggested. I would personally need an explanation of how it works ;)
I think it important to get this question settled within a month. --Peter Talk 07:54, 22 June 2012 (EDT)
It's simple (see wikipedia:Approval voting). Everyone who participates votes "yea" or "nay" on each of the available options. The option with the most "yay" votes wins. This produces a result that the greatest number of people can live with. It's better than preference voting because it doesn't require voters to impose what may be an arbitrary ranking on their choices, it's easier to calculate, and its far less subject to gaming the system (for example, it's sometimes beneficial to rank your top choice low, if it ensures that your second-favorite beats out your least-favorite). LtPowers 09:47, 22 June 2012 (EDT)
Would you please get it started. --Peter Talk 09:50, 22 June 2012 (EDT)
Hopefully I've added my votes correctly - I'm ambivalent about "Next stops" and "Go next", but considering the work effort required to change this heading I'm not a fan of anything that doesn't make the purpose of this section dramatically clearer, and I don't think the proposed imperative headings are more effective in communicating "places to visit after this one". -- Ryan • (talk) • 12:12, 22 June 2012 (EDT)

Approval vote

OK, I'll get it started, guessing at what it should look like:


Term Approvals Total
Daytrip AHeneen 1
Excursions AHeneen 1
Get away LtPowers 2
Get out LtPowers, Texugo, Shaund, AHeneen, Vidimian 5
Get out and about Vidimian 1
Go away LtPowers 1
Go next Peter, Ikan Kekek, LtPowers, inas, PerryPlanet, Shaund, Justme, jpatokal, Vidimian 9
Going further 0
Move on Peter, LtPowers, inas, Texugo, Shaund, jpatokal 6
Moving on 0
Nearby Peter, Ryan, Ikan Kekek, AHeneen 4
Nearby destinations Peter, Ryan, Ikan Kekek, AHeneen 4
Next move inas, PerryPlanet 2
Next stops Peter, inas, Shaund, Ryan 4
Onward Peter, Ikan Kekek, PerryPlanet, Texugo, Shaund, AHeneen 6

I'm having a hell of a time being able to see how to edit this when I'm in the edit screen. My pro/con votes:

Pro: Nearby, Nearby destinations, Go next, Onward. Con: Get away, Getting out and about, Get out Neutral: Moving on, Move on, Next stops. If detailed remarks are relevant here: "Get away" sounds like a very unfriendly command - probably even worse than "Get out." "Getting out and about" sounds like a place to list nightclubs, etc. "Next stops" sounds relevant only to train lines. "Move on/Moving on" are OK but sound like they really exclude day trips. Ikan Kekek 15:59, 22 June 2012 (EDT)

I've put your votes in the table. LtPowers 16:18, 22 June 2012 (EDT)

Guys, it's "approval" voting, not "disapproval" voting. Just "yes" or "not yes". I'm really surprised no one else is familiar with this; the various Wikimedia projects use it frequently. Use three tildes to sign just your name. LtPowers 16:18, 22 June 2012 (EDT)

Okay, my votes are in. Again, avoiding the Nearbys, which IMO fundamentally change the section rather than just thinking of a better name for what it currently means. --Inas 00:26, 23 June 2012 (EDT)

Added my vote. I've decided to yank my earlier support for Nearby, since I think some good arguments were made here against that (what if the closest destination isn't "nearby"?). "Go next" has a nice snappy quality to it I like, plus it doesn't feel like a command, but "Onward" I really like too - it makes me think 'Adventure!' PerryPlanet Talk 00:41, 23 June 2012 (EDT)

I am disappointed that "Go next" is receiving so much support. I know it is grammatical in sentences like "where should I go next", but as a header I really think it is grammatically awkward. This voting only allows me to approve a couple that I think are ok, but if I could I would put "Go next" lower than almost anything else. Lined up with the other headers as they are, I think it sounds just as unnatural as replacing When to go with "Go when!" or Cope with "Do while!". texugo 15:14, 2 July 2012 (EDT)
I think it is bound to get a good amount from an approval vote, because it satisfices. It is much clearer and maintains the imperative that many people like. That said, upon further consideration, I think onward also meets those goals, and is a bit more friendly and poetic. I'm happy to see us making any progress towards getting rid of the chronically misunderstood "get out" heading, though, either way. --Peter Talk 15:24, 2 July 2012 (EDT)
This has been stated previously, but I think the effort required to change this heading on all articles will be wasted unless the new heading is significantly more obvious than "Get out". Most of the suggested options do not seem to meet that criteria, in large part due to the requirement that they use an imperative format. I'm an engineer, not a writer, so I'm probably not wired to discuss this type of subject properly, but is it really so important to have imperatives for all headings that we sacrifice clarity of purpose? -- Ryan • (talk) • 15:44, 2 July 2012 (EDT)
I think the first six in this list either change the meaning (undesirable?) or are not clearer than "get out." One of the biggest problems with "get out" is that it is too similar to "get in." Without the context of the get in section, people might not be so prone to mistake the section's purpose (as it is not for discussing transport routes). Using a more different sounding imperative, even if on its own it is not so much more clear, would I think be an improvement. --Peter Talk 15:53, 2 July 2012 (EDT)
I don't understand Texugo's objection. "When" and "while" are conjunctions, so of course those constructions sound awkward; "next", though, is an adverb, which fits perfectly well with the verb "Go". LtPowers 16:40, 2 July 2012 (EDT)
My point is that, as evidenced by the other headers, one would expect an imperative, but "go next" is not a grammatically valid imperative (unless you put a destination between the two words). I'm saying that, as much as I'd rather not break up the imperative principle we have going, that would be better than using this faux-imperative "go next". texugo 16:47, 2 July 2012 (EDT)

Events

Per Inas suggestion in Wikitravel talk:Using Mediawiki templates#User Page Banners, I propose to create a third-level section "Events" where all the major local holidays and events of major interest to traveler should go. The discussion started with an idea to have info on New Year / Christmas for every major destination where people travel for these holidays (see my early drafts in User:DenisYurkin/New Year Travel), but I completely understand that in templates we should cover much broader scope with such a section.

So are there any objections on adding it to Wikitravel:Big city article template (to start with)?

And is Do generally a right place to stick it? (as WTSI currently suggests for festivals) --DenisYurkin 14:55, 12 February 2010 (EST)

"Do" is the right place, but I'm not sure a standardized subheading is necessary. Different articles will have different requirements. See, e.g., Rochester (New York)#Festivals. Would you propose changing that to "Events" or am I missing your point? LtPowers 15:43, 12 February 2010 (EST)
I think the idea is that we indicate there is a standard section for attractions that are on at a certain time. Adding this as a subsection will encourage people to add things to see and do that are only available at a particular time of year. I think we can make it clear in the text that if a name like Festivals is more appropriate at the destination, that we can just change it. --inas 16:01, 12 February 2010 (EST)
Of course I'm fine with an option to change heading where necessary. Alternatively, we can have something one-size-fits-all, like "Festivals and events", or "Festivals and national holidays" (yep, too long). --DenisYurkin 16:15, 12 February 2010 (EST)

Any other objections/opinions, please? --DenisYurkin 16:45, 14 February 2010 (EST)

OK, as we see no objections on the idea in general, here is the first take on what to add (supposed to become a subsection of ==Do== in Wikitravel:Big_city_article_template#Do):

===Events===

Most cities have local events, festivals etc. And in most countries, people have national holidays, be it Christmas, New Year or Easter. List local events; share tips on how to make most of them.'

Please help to polish this text further. --DenisYurkin 16:21, 6 March 2010 (EST)

Again, I don't think it's necessary to have a standardized subheading here. Nothing's stopping you from putting this information into any article, but I also don't want to see city articles filling up with St. Patrick's Day Parades and Memorial Day events. LtPowers 16:42, 6 March 2010 (EST)
Well, as long as it's made clear it's optional I guess I'm okay with providing some advice. I'll think about wording. LtPowers 18:38, 6 March 2010 (EST)
Thanks for being positive :-) And to address your concern on StPatrick Day Parades, we can make it clear that we most welcome (a) truly local events (to this level of hierarchy, but currently we are focused on big cities, as I understand it); (b) holidays (not necessarily local) which are in itself reasons to travel (where Christmas and New Year should qualify, in my belief). Should we allow any other category/-ies here, BTW? --DenisYurkin 17:22, 9 March 2010 (EST)
Well, Christmas certainly is a reason for travel, but in the vast majority of cases, that's to visit family. Do you have an example of what kind of text might be used to write about Christmas travel? LtPowers 18:25, 9 March 2010 (EST)
I'm not a good candidate specifically on Christmas, as in Russia it's not a reason to travel at all (unlike New Year which very much is--although rarely to meet family). I'm afraid I'm too unaware how things are about Christmas in US or Western Europe--however I can write something on New Year, does it make sense? --DenisYurkin 07:33, 10 March 2010 (EST)
Yes, I'd be interested to see an example of that as well. =) LtPowers 10:08, 10 March 2010 (EST)
For template purposes, New Year can be mentioned like this (far from perfect, but gives an idea):
Most cities have local events, festivals etc. _Many travelers use major holidays as a reason to travel, e.g. they use New Year holidays to ski in Alps or to change chilling weather of their home city to a beach or tropics._ List local events; share tips on how to make most of them; _list the most popular offerings for holidays as a reason to travel (like Christmas markets or tips on choosing a restaurant for a New Year dinner, or local customs and dishes for New Year celebration_).'
Did you mean template purposes, or how it can look in any given article? For the latter, probably something from User:DenisYurkin/New Year Travel can give the idea. --DenisYurkin 17:12, 10 March 2010 (EST)
Does it help in any way, or have I misunderstood what you asked for? --DenisYurkin 17:05, 13 March 2010 (EST)
Sorry, I missed your post from earlier. I was wondering how you thought such a section would look in a destination article; to that end, the example you give on your New Year Travel page for Spain is a good one, but I fear it might be a little too specific. I don't know. Maybe I'm not the right person to be asking about this. LtPowers 22:29, 13 March 2010 (EST)
Then, do you still object to adding to the template a piece like the original wording in the beginning of this section? --DenisYurkin 08:42, 14 March 2010 (EDT)
It just strikes me as unnecessary. I'm not the final arbiter by any means, though. LtPowers 10:29, 14 March 2010 (EDT)
What if I add the section to the big city template, and after several months we decide whether it brought more harm or good?
Alternatively, maybe it's really better to stick to the original idea--to make New Year Travel a travel topic article, and add links there to destination guides with any substantial amount of content on New Year traditions / practicalities (similar to Travelling with children)? --DenisYurkin 19:07, 16 March 2010 (EDT)
I don't know. I'd like to see what others think. LtPowers 07:13, 17 March 2010 (EDT)
Others, please stop sitting on the fence on this :-) --DenisYurkin 11:06, 17 March 2010 (EDT)
Also strikes me as unnecessary, would rather not see it added to the article templates – cacahuate talk 22:36, 18 March 2010 (EDT)
Hmm, in fact I have already been wondering where to put information about festivals (and intuitively I did not choose "Do"). I'm not so sure about "New Year" in city articles, as it is rather universal although celebrated in different ways and intensities around the world. But especially local festivals should have a (obvious) place to go. Why - if it is a really big and special thing in that city - not mention a St. Patrick's Day Parade? The more "foreign" the culture is, the more important those informations - for many Indian articles the Hindu festivals are rather important for the average traveler. --Sebindi 07:46, 27 April 2010 (EDT)

Updating how we display articles

A user started playing around with the display for the Holbox article today and put something in place that, while in need of work, seemed interesting to me. In the many years that I've been contributing to this site, and especially since User:Evan left, there haven't really been any significant proposals for changing how we present articles, and as a result I think we're getting a bit dated. At present our articles are long blocks of text with a few interspersed images, and aside from a tiny TOC there isn't a great way to navigate the article or quickly call out important items. The idea behind the Holbox article changes seemed interesting on the following grounds:

  • It provides an additional way to call out important sections of the article - this approach seems more user-friendly to me than the TOC.
  • It might make for a more obvious place to display things like routeboxes, star icons, and map links, thus improving article usability.
  • If we implement these sorts of headers as templates we would then also have an easy way to make global article updates if needed - change the template, all articles change.

Obviously there are numerous drawbacks (the "welcome to..." verbiage needs to go, printable versions might suffer, it would be a lot of work to update all articles, CSS is bound to interact badly in some cases, etc.) but this seemed like an interesting idea and one worth discussing. Any thoughts? -- Ryan • (talk) • 20:51, 8 April 2010 (EDT)

That's looking like a far superior ToC—when I see new users start to read the site, they almost always miss our current one. It's quite small and not terribly eye catching. --Peter Talk 21:08, 8 April 2010 (EDT)
Honestly, I find the horizontal layout much easier to miss than a large rectangle on the left side of the article. LtPowers 21:43, 8 April 2010 (EDT)
While I think something more prominent than the current TOC would be easier for navigation, I guess my interest in this sort of header is more for things that we don't currently do with the TOC. Since IB isn't going to make any back-end changes, a template might be the best option for adding additional navigational elements. See User:Wrh2/Sandbox for an example that calls out the US map in the header, makes a DOTM icon prominent, and could be used for other elements (such as perhaps routeboxes) that might make navigation easier.
To be clear, I'm not suggesting we immediately embark on a massive "change the site" exercise, but I do think our layout is falling behind the times and could potentially benefit from some usability enhancements. -- Ryan • (talk) • 22:55, 8 April 2010 (EDT)
I am very keen to explore new display formats for Wikitravel. The site is indeed looking a bit dated. The US example in your sandbox Ryan is definitely a step in the right direction. --Burmesedays 22:58, 8 April 2010 (EDT)
I think the horizontal version is more eye-catching - but is real-estate going to be an issue? Anyway, I think we need an updated look, even if just for the sake of change. --inas 01:41, 9 April 2010 (EDT)
I have never been a fan of change for change's sake. LtPowers 10:26, 9 April 2010 (EDT)
Again, to be clear, the goal in bringing this subject up was merely to start a discussion as to whether people are interested in a change, and if so what ideas people might have for making a change - "change for change's sake" is not the goal, although anyone who is a fan of occasional UI updates might see any change as a benefit. Personally, I think it would be an interesting exercise to try to create some mock-ups to demonstrate addition of new navigation features, and it would be great to have feedback and suggestions for those mockups. If the consensus is that the status quo is better than any change then obviously we wouldn't move ahead, but it would be good to get additional ideas on what people like/dislike about the current layouts and how we might address some of those preferences with minor UI tweaks. -- Ryan • (talk) • 12:19, 9 April 2010 (EDT)
I'll consider any proposals, but I don't really see a great need to change. As a "wiki", I do think there is an advantage to using a format that is familiar to those who know wikipedia. When our articles are at their best (star status), I think they look quite nice really. I tend to be cautious when it comes to change, though. ChubbyWimbus 23:54, 9 April 2010 (EDT)
I definitely like the looks of that. Of course the simple looks of the plain wiki-style have some advantages but overall a little more color and layout would be a nice thing in my opinion. Having a printable format might be important but at the moment we are not taking too much advantage of the huge possibilities of Wikitravel being a website, are we? --Sebindi 08:01, 27 April 2010 (EDT)
Wikitravel's currently on MW 1.11, which is way behind the times. Wikipedia's been on 1.16 for a while now, and its new "Vector" skin alone is far more slick than what we have on WT. Jpatokal 06:50, 12 August 2010 (EDT)
I don't know if Vector is included in the 1.16. But I did submit a tech request on Shared to do an upgrade: shared:Tech:Upgrade to MediaWiki 1.16. LtPowers 09:33, 12 August 2010 (EDT)
I think Wikitravel could definitely use the 1.16 update. I hope we can convince IB to upgrade. --globe-trotter 14:26, 12 August 2010 (EDT)

How can I create new Article Templates for my wiki?

Can I, as a administrator, create new Article Template for my wiki? How? I did not find technical information about it. Where I can find guides about it? —The preceding comment was added by Sarajistka (talkcontribs)

The templates aren't anything special, just a normal page that you can copy and paste into the edit box. Is there something beyond that that you wanted to do? LtPowers 09:48, 17 November 2010 (EST)


Thanks but how i can to insert or show this template above edit box of new page? —The preceding comment was added by Sarajistka (talkcontribs)

Ah, I believe you can edit MediaWiki:Newarticletext (don't edit ours! edit yours on your wiki) to change what gets displayed when a user is creating a new article. LtPowers 09:23, 18 November 2010 (EST)

Understand before/after Regions

The country template has Understand before Regions while the Region template has it the other way round. I know this has come up before, but a) having the Regions first creates a layout problem when you have a lead photo because it separates the Regions section from its map (ex. Rio de Janeiro (state)), and b) isn't it just better to have the section order the same, for consistency's sake? texugo 21:43, 13 February 2011 (EST)

Moving the Regions section down hinders navigation; having it near the top lets browsers jump right to the subregion they want to see. LtPowers 18:32, 14 February 2011 (EST)
While I agree that "Regions" should be as close to the top of the page as possible, I also think that "Regions", "Cities" and "Other destinations" naturally go together, so for that reason I'd suggest always putting "Understand" first rather than breaking up those three sections. That said, if there was a way to provide a quick navigation to the region map from the top of the page I'd very much be in favor. -- Ryan • (talk) • 18:49, 14 February 2011 (EST)
Or maybe we should move the lead photo down under the map in cases where it separates them. I don't really care which solution we take, but I'd like to see the region map always sit next to the key. The region template doesn't do much good if you have to scroll back and forth to see where things are on the map, especially with the subtle colors we use in many region templates. texugo 22:21, 14 February 2011 (EST)
I like having "Understand" first. If you go to a region/country article, it's nice to have the overview right at the top for quick reference and I don't think it typically pushes the regional breakdown and city list that far down. The consistency is also nice. ChubbyWimbus 23:17, 14 February 2011 (EST)
The 'overview' is the lead section, which is right at the top. Do we really need the lead followed immediately by the Understand section? In most cases, if image spacing is an issue, the lead is too short. LtPowers 13:01, 15 February 2011 (EST)
The understand section was moved to the top of country articles because the quickbar template forces the first image way down the screen, most often far past the regionlist template. I don't think the problem is terribly frequent with region articles, and is usually solved by opting for a horizontally aligned lead image, or simply filling out the lede a bit, and perhaps tossing in a <br clear="all" /> for good measure. Btw, moving understand to the top of the Rio region article linked above wouldn't help for the same reason—it's empty! --Peter Talk 19:09, 15 February 2011 (EST)
I've always viewed the "Understand" section as an extension of the overview. It gives more in-depth information on history, along with climate and other general information, so I like it there. I just don't see it as an issue most of the time, especially in the case of regions, which typically have very short "Understand" sections. The only page that I have ever felt annoyed by the Understand section is the China article, because it's SOOOOOOOOOOoooo long but I think that's just due to its need for some consolidation in the history section. ChubbyWimbus 00:55, 16 February 2011 (EST)
New York (state)#Understand would look completely out of place in the position Texugo suggests. Putting history and climate above the descriptions of subregions strikes me as odd to say the least. LtPowers 20:10, 16 February 2011 (EST)
And to me it looks strange the way it is now, in part because it's inconsistent with the country and city article structure, but also, since I view the "Understand" section differently, it just seems to make more sense to have all that general information first, followed by the regional breakdown, and then all the other topics. ChubbyWimbus 05:48, 17 February 2011 (EST)
The regional breakdown is navigational; it is entirely unintuitive to push navigational information to the interior. That's basic UI design. LtPowers 20:31, 21 February 2011 (EST)
If that's the case, then Wikitravel simply doesn't follow basic UI design, because it's always been "Understand" before region/city listings. It doesn't seem to make sense that articles between country and city would flip these sections. If we assume that all articles are useful and that people who want to visit a regional page are there because they want more information about the region and are not just using it to find the list of cities, it doesn't seem to interfere with anything. I've never seen this as a problem or heard of it being a major issue. I don't think Wikitravel is difficult to navigate at all with "Understand" before regions/cities. ChubbyWimbus 15:57, 22 February 2011 (EST)
What do you mean "it's always been"? LtPowers 16:10, 22 February 2011 (EST)
Yes, as I allude to above, understand at the top of country articles is the only exception to the rule of putting the navigational sections first, and was done to accommodate the mass of space taken up by the quickbar. I'd still prefer to just delete the quickbar..., which would allow us to move regions right back up to their ideal spot, and bring country templates back in line with our standards. --Peter Talk 17:42, 22 February 2011 (EST)
How would deleting the quickbar bring things back to 'standard'? If the standard is in actuality to have the "understand" below the regions, then I'd say the site has gone wayward, because based on actual placement, it appears to be that we place "Understand" above it in most cases. I think the quick bar is useful. When articles are at their best (especially country), they can be rather long, so it becomes annoying to try to find a specific subheading or subheading of a subheading without it. ChubbyWimbus 18:13, 22 February 2011 (EST)
Take a look at the discussion I linked above, as well as this one. Countries are the exception to the regions-at-the-top rule, and became so only because of problems caused by the quickbar, and subsequent complaining and belly-aching from my part ;)
I'm not sure why you have an impression that understand ever comes above the navigational sections aside from the country article template. --Peter Talk 19:22, 22 February 2011 (EST)
And I'm also not clear on how the quickbar helps "find[ing] a specific subheading". LtPowers 12:06, 23 February 2011 (EST)

improving a particular aspect of destination guides, wikitravel-wide

Swept in from the pub. This discussion started as a side discussion to one about Tipping, see Talk:Tipping


The issue seems more general, and for me it looks similar to any aspect of article which is rarely covered well in a destination article, but someone is willing to create a coordination point for others interested in that aspect, to showcase the best-practice examples of how this aspect is covered in some destinations for other editors to follow, and to make it visible how few destinations are described well in this aspect, and how many more are actually needed.

Aspects may be various: dutyfree shopping in airports (will provide a link to a relevant discussion if someone is interested); business travel; travelling with children; facitilities for disabled traveler, gay/lesbian; how to find a great restaurant--to name only a few.

Looks like we don't have a good solution for the issue. Existing options I know are:

  • creating a travel topic with general info; provide a list of destinations where this aspect is covered well, or at all: see Travelling_with_children
  • listing "articles missing aspect" (and needing them): see Wikitravel:Regions_map_Expedition
  • (it seems to me there was an expedition aiming at improving one aspect wikitravel-wide, listing articles where the expedition succeeded in doing so)
  • (maybe there is some other way which I am not aware about)

Another way I am thinking of in the last months is to create a single article listing all [most important] we are interested in improving here at Wikitravel, and for each aspect to give one to several showcase articles where this aspect is described particularly well. For example:

Maybe implementing such a list can help in the above discussion. --DenisYurkin 17:23, 11 January 2011 (EST)

Perhaps we can look again at our article and listings templates? We could, for example, mandate a tipping second level heading in country articles. Including disabled, children, gblt friendly in our sleep/eat listings? --inas 18:31, 11 January 2011 (EST)
That would definitely help--at least to have more articles covering at least very basic pieces of these aspects. Do we need to also link to this discussion from Wikitravel talk:Article templates? (and/or other policy discussion--which one?) --DenisYurkin 17:22, 18 January 2011 (EST)
Sounds reasonable to me. I might also Plunge forward with the tipping heading, and see if it stimulates any discussion. --inas 17:26, 18 January 2011 (EST)

Layout issues

Swept in from the pub
Vancouver squashed.png

So, who can see the problem in the image to the right? LtPowers 18:36, 22 June 2011 (EDT)

The break between "nightlife and" and "accommodation listings — consider"? --Peter Talk 18:39, 22 June 2011 (EDT)
Yes, specifically, and the very small amount of width available to the lead in general. Vancouver's hardly the only article with this problem (and it seems to show up a lot more often when the ad column on the right is wider due to having a graphical ad, as it is here). Having the TOC on the left and an image over (say) 350px on the right makes for a very very narrow lead section. I really wish there was a way to get the TOC out of the way, but barring that, I think we should think about limiting lead images to 350px. LtPowers 18:45, 22 June 2011 (EDT)
Instead, perhaps we could revisit this: Wikitravel_talk:Article_templates#Updating_how_we_display_articles. You seemed against the idea, but I think that opposition was mainly because you didn't see much need to make the change? I'm still a fan of a more colorful table of contents in any rate, but avoiding the squishing problem (which is also a big problem on articles with quickbars) would be a clear advantage. --Peter Talk 19:12, 22 June 2011 (EDT)

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