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Wikitravel talk:Big city article template

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Would it be a good idea to add an "Extras" heading to some templates - like this one for big cities (but also smaller cities and districts) - to cover all the other things a traveller might need / want to know about.....? Examples might include: currency conversion, banks, laundromats, interpreters, hospitals / doctors and so on. Many popular guidebooks include this type of section and I know I'm always keen to learn these bits of vital information that help smooth a traveller's way...... Anyone else got an opinion on this?

I think we need this, actually. You may have noticed that most of the headers are short little saxon verbs or phrases -- "Get in", "Get around", "Eat", "Sleep", etc. Maj and I were discussing how to handle the "extras"-type stuff (places to exercise were my pet idea, for example). We thought maybe just "Live". What's your thoughts? -- Evan 10:35, 13 Nov 2003 (PST)

Hmmm, well, I still like "Extras", but then... I would, having suggested it (!) But I see where you're coming from with the verbal descriptors.... First thing that came to my mind, however, when I saw "Live" was: Is that "Live" (as in the verb) or (A)"Live" as the adjective? A little ambiguity there, but I guess it doesn't matter that much, once people are used to it.... Places to exercise is a great idea for inclusion.... I know I've always found it totally maddening to find a decent gym in some of the cities I've visited..... even in some places where it shouldn't be hard to find somewhere. Local knowledge is very important in this regard to save the run-around..... pjamescowie

I do the same Live/Live thing! What about "Get it done" ? That covers the laundry, exercise, etc etc stuff. Or the really ambiguous "Be"Majnoona
OK, I have one more suggestion: "Cope". I was thinking "Deal" or "Handle", but I realized those were probably just California slang, ("Dude, you need to deal."). Also, "Cope" is a nice sharp little word. -- Evan 07:10, 14 Nov 2003 (PST)
=Read= comes to mind as something really nice. I have some commentary on a couple of the geneva guidebooks, but I don't really know where to put it, or if I should put it in at all.

In regards to Extras (for any size city or for that matter region), what about an "Information" section added to the template designated for official tourism offices, listing visitor center locations, hours of operation, phone number, website etc.? I currently manage a tourism office and know first hand how these official offices are invaluable resources prior to and during travel. I am relatively new to this and have not seen this handled consistently in posts(if at all), but welcome suggestions and discussion. Nwdude

For the most part I think people have been adding sub-sections under "Understand" for official tourism offices - see Falkland Islands and Singapore for two examples. I'm not sure that it would be a good idea to modify the template to include an "official" subsection for these offices since that section would probably quickly become a magnet for travel agencies and other non-official sources, but adding a sentence of two indicating that creating a sub-section under "Understand" is the way to list official tourism offices seems like it would be fine. -- Ryan • (talk) • 14:55, 4 May 2008 (EDT)
Thanks Ryan, makes sense and I understand what you mean about non-official tourism agencies. There are many in destinations that are store fronts or kiosks for time shares and select outfitters. Nwdude


I re-inserted the splurge subsection of 'Sleep'. Bill's comment ("One splurge is enough!") doesn't make sense to me. One is the section for expensive places to eat, the other is the section for expensive places to sleep. --Evan 11:54, 18 May 2004 (EDT)


Where is the best place to put coffee shops and desert places and other similar places. They don't fit very well in the ===Budget===, ===Mid-range===, ===Splurge=== model for food. Food is usually relatively cheap, but quite small servings and many would say that paying $4 for a fancy coffee and $3 for a scone is a ===splurge===. However, I think that people looking in these sections expect restaurants. I wonder if it might be better to separate out cafes and include a special ===cafes=== section of ==Eat== or maybe ==Drink== (I've see that done in at least one of the articles) For now I will include them in ==Eat== under the seemingly best section and make sure to say it is a coffee shop -- Webgeer 14:11, Aug 4, 2004 (EDT)


Is the "work" section really travel-related ? Seems very vague and generally off topic here. There're many different professions and any information here will hardly be useful for most of the travellers. Wojsyl 08:39, 2 Jan 2005 (EST)

We could put information for business travelers here. 00:24, 12 Mar 2005 (EST)

Wikitravel is not a guide just for tourist travel -- it is a guide for all types of travel. Is there some special need that businesss travelers have that this guide does not already fulfill? -- Colin 00:27, 12 Mar 2005 (EST)
I see the Work section as being very applicable to travelers. In some places the traveler may be able to get a job, with no questions asked, at the drop of a hat; in others, the jobs may be freely available at certain times of the year but you need to have done the correct paperwork in advance, first, to get one. Not every country has an unemployment problem, some have employment problems and need people to do all the jobs available at certain times of the year. Sometimes the jobs are there but the travelers need to be warned about taking on employment of certain (perhaps illegal) types, or payroll tax issues, visa restrictions, etc. -- Huttite 05:31, 19 Mar 2005 (EST)

Get out --> Nearby[edit]

This issue has been discussed elsewhere but I can't seem to find that discussion... anyhow, aside from the obvious problem that it would be a pain to clean up existing articles, is there any reason why "Get out" couldn't be changed to "Nearby" or something similar? This section seems to be a source of confusion to many contributors, and as a result we don't have many articles with useful information about other nearby destination suggestions or day-trip ideas. Just as an example, the Las Vegas article gets tons of edits and seems like one that should have lots of good nearby listings, but there isn't even a Get Out section on the page, must less links to sites that people typically combine with Vegas such as Lake Mead National Recreation Area, Death Valley National Park, the Grand Canyon, etc. -- Wrh2 13:44, 23 Jun 2005 (EDT)

Now there's a Las Vegas#Get out.
I'm not sure I believe changing "Get out" to "Nearby" will increase the number of "Get out" sections on pages. Also, we've had "Get out" almost since the beginning of Wikitravel. I'm very fond of "Get in/Get around/Get out"; it's part of the "house style". "Nearby" also fails to be parallel with the verbal format of section headers in the Wikitravel article templates. --Evan 14:55, 23 Jun 2005 (EDT)
Las Vegas was just the first example I thought to look up, but throughout the site it seems like "Get out" is just not well understood by people who aren't very familiar with Wikitravel. Consider San Francisco -- the get out section is used to point out a bus line and bicycle rental, both good suggestions, but both more on "how to get out of" the city with nothing mentioned about "where to visit nearby", including obvious nearby destinations such as Muir Woods, Point Reyes, Napa, etc. New York (city) doesn't have a Get out section, nor does Chicago, despite the fact that people must know tons of good nearby destinations. Given its purpose, one would think that this section should be like "External links" and suffer from too many entries rather than too few. Articles that do have good Get out sections such as Paris and Seattle, in general have had them added or updated primarily by experienced Wikitravel users (Mark and Paul Richter in those two cases), not by the numerous other users that contributed heavily to the articles.
Many articles don't have one or another section. This is a wiki; we work on them together. I just don't think that "Nearby" is going to magically appear on those articles when "Get out" wouldn't. --Evan 13:13, 24 Jun 2005 (EDT)
If the preference is to keep "Get out" because it's semantically similar to "Get in" and "Get around", how about finding some way to make it clearer to people that the section is not meant to be "How to get out" but "Where to get out to"? Perhaps changing it to "Get away" (not great, hopefully people can come up with a better suggestion) or something to make it slightly clearer that the section is about nearby places to visit? -- Wrh2 15:36, 23 Jun 2005 (EDT)
I like the Get away idea -- it fits with the style and clarifies the intent. -- Colin 16:42, 23 Jun 2005 (EDT)
Brilliant! You win the prize, whatever it is! -- Mark 17:56, 23 Jun 2005 (EDT)
Many thanks for the prize (I'll take whatever is behind door #2), but the "Get away" suggestion was off the top of my head, and (as noted) it's not ideal. A new user should be able to look at a skeleton article and know what kind of data should go into each section, and "Get away" still seems like it could be misunderstood to mean "this is how you get away from the destination" instead of "these are nearby places you might also want to visit". I've got a mental block in coming up with anything that uses the "Get ..." semantics, but there must be something. Any other suggestions? -- Wrh2 19:38, 23 Jun 2005 (EDT)
I'm at six colons now. Let's see..."Get lost?" Someone might take that the wrong way. "Get around?" That one's already taken. "Get out and about?" Maybe this is better. At least it rhymes. It would be easy to modify existing pages too. -- Mikito 20:34, 23 Jun 2005 (EDT)
Well, at least the expression "I need a getaway" actually means go take a trip. On the face of it, "Get out" seems to be merely directions for how to leave town (and I've seen contributors write "the opposite of how you got in"). At least "Get away" doesn't immediately lead the mind to an obvious-but-wrong definition. I love it. -- Colin 22:39, 23 Jun 2005 (EDT)
Get out is very specifically for how to get out of town (or village or region), and places to go if you want to do that. It's not a misunderstanding at all to describe it that way. We normally don't add lots of exit info here if it's obvious from "Get in", but it is the right place to put it. --Evan 13:13, 24 Jun 2005 (EDT) has a handy list of phrasal verbs starting with "Get", none of which seem be particularly useful, although I'm now tempted to rename "Cope" as "Get along" and "Drink" as "Get off" ;).

Anyway, I agree that Get out is by far the most misunderstood name in the current templates. A crystal clear noun version would be "Excursions", but unfortunately "Excurse" or "Excur" doesn't quite cut it as a verb. "Daytrip" as a verb is a little borderline (and a little limiting too). Jpatokal 04:01, 24 Jun 2005 (EDT)

I like the Get along suggestion a lot. Did you see the Get away idea on one of the other pages? -- Mark 05:29, 24 Jun 2005 (EDT)
Get along is a great idea, a fantastic replacement for Cope (which has a tinge of desperation about it....!) Get away I'm also impressed with..... I'm up for the change.... Anyone else? (Just as a joke / an aside: How long before someone suggests a return to red-light districts and suggests the heading "Get f***ed"? LOL. Pjamescowie 09:03, 24 Jun 2005 (EDT)
Uh-oh, I wasn't being entirely serious. Phrasal verbs are one of the trickiest bits of English and not very user-friendly for the non-native speaker. Also, while all the other Gets refer to moving around, "Get along" doesn't.
And while I agree that "Get away" is better than "Get out", it's still not very clear in my opinion. Jpatokal 10:25, 24 Jun 2005 (EDT)
"Get out" is about what destinations to move on to, and how to get there, as well as what local excursions there are. There's a text description on the template we're commenting on. --Evan 10:57, 24 Jun 2005 (EDT)
Yes, all of us here discussing this know this, but it's manifestly unclear from the mere words "Get out". In particular, drawing the fine line between what goes in "Get in" and what goes in "Get out" continues to mystify many of our contributors. See eg. Huay Xai and Xiancheng, where Get in now has incoming bus schedules and Get out has outgoing bus schedules... Jpatokal 11:14, 24 Jun 2005 (EDT)
Ah. See, I thought the words "in" and "out" were pretty self-explanatory. Does this help?
I don't think bus schedules for leaving the city are inappropriate for "Get out", although I do think tabular bus schedules are inappropriate.
Anyways, I'm fine with changing this header, if it really sticks in people's craw, but I find the arguments pretty limp. I'm fond of the header since it's been part of our templates since waaaaaaaay back, and since it's parallel with "Get in". I think a mass switch of "Get out" to "Get away" would be a huge waste of time. I think we shouldn't kid ourselves that contributors are going to magically know what to do if we find the most excellent perfect section headers; we should probably just face the fact that experienced contributors are always going to have to fiddle with info input by new users. That's what wiki is all about. --Evan 13:02, 24 Jun 2005 (EDT)
Just to be clear, if your thought is that "Get out" (exit) is really just the opposite of "Get in" (enter), then the real discussion should be about two different issues: (1) that there isn't an obvious place to put nearby destinations, and (2) that there aren't likely to be articles where "Get out" contains anything other than a reverse of the "Get in" information (destinations requiring a base jump entry and a subterranean raft trip exit notwithstanding). My understanding is that "Get out" should be used for nearby destinations, and that exit information can be inferred from "Get in". -- Wrh2 16:39, 24 Jun 2005 (EDT)
We crossed paths... I have a response below. Let me know if that answers your questions. --16:56, 24 Jun 2005 (EDT)
So, is the confusion we're talking about the confusion between "Get out" as "Exit" (the intended meaning) and "Get out" as "Get off your duff and see this fine city"? --Evan 13:16, 24 Jun 2005 (EDT)
How to move on from the destination. Try and include as many options as you can think of -- land, air, sea. Other nearby destination suggestions or day-trip ideas should go here. Don't replicate information that's up in "Get in", though. If there's really no extra information, just leave this section out entirely.
It seems that most new users (including myself when I first found this site) see "get out" and assume it is "how to exit a destination", which isn't very valuable information -- off the top of my head I can't think of any destination where getting out (as an exit) is any more complicated than "the opposite of how you got in". As a new user, I automatically left "get out" off of any articles I was working on, thinking it wasn't worth having. Having been here a while longer, it's now apparent that "get out" is the only place appropriate for listing nearby destinations, a topic that is extremely helpful to travelers and a topic that is missing from the vast majority of articles. The purpose of this discussion was meant to be finding a way of making it clearer to users what the section is for. Changing the heading to something like "Nearby destinations" would make the purpose clear, although the concern was raised that it doesn't semantically follow the other sections, so "Get away" was brought up as a possibility. Personally, I like "Nearby destinations" despite the syntax differences (although it does follow the same syntax as "External links") since it makes it completely obvious what the section is for, eliminating the confusion for new users. -- Wrh2 16:18, 24 Jun 2005 (EDT)
It seems to me that you boldfaced the wrong sentence in that quote. How to move on from the destination seems to me to be the key point. "Get out" is for more than just "nearby destinations". I agree that there's a lot of info that'd be duplicated with "Get in", and we don't want to bother with "just go back the way you came." But there is other information that goes there. Some examples: some countries have exit taxes. Info on how to get to the airport or bus terminal is also useful for a lot of places. Some island and remote sea towns are on a ferry loop that doesn't go back the way it came. Ditto with a number of trekking destinations in the Himalayas and Andes.
I realize that "Get out" doesn't mean "Nearby destinations", and that a lot of our "Get out" sections have nothing but. But I don't think we should just write off all the other info that goes there. Would an entry in Where you can stick it help? --Evan 16:31, 24 Jun 2005 (EDT)
Exit taxes should be listed in same section as the airport/border crossing, which is invariably in Get in. (I like to highlight them with an infobox, because it's a real hassle to forget them.) Methods of getting to an airport/bus terminal/camel oasis are invariably the same as the methods of getting from the airport/bus terminal/camel oasis to the city (can you think of an exception?), and hence belong in Get in. I have yet to see a trail, in the Himalayas or elsewhere, that cannot be trekked in both directions; just because there's a conventional direction doesn't mean you have to follow it. And one-way ferry loops is really stretching it, how many % of Wikitravel's articles can this possibly apply to and doesn't this fit naturally in Get in anyway? "Foo is served once per week by the Bar-Foo-Baz ferry line...".
The only thing that's left over is nearby destinations, which is what prompted this discussion in the first place. I'd also like to note that I have never seen another travel guide with a "Get out" section, while every decent travel guide has a "nearby"/"excursions"/"day trips" section. Jpatokal 22:23, 24 Jun 2005 (EDT)
My Rough guides all have sections at the end of city destinations with bus/ferry/train schedules as well as info on depots and stations. --Evan 12:20, 26 Jun 2005 (EDT)
So do the Wikitravel articles I work on — and the information is in "Get in". Does your Rough Guide have one section for getting into depots and stations and another section for getting out of them?
And, um, you didn't really answer my question. Aside from nearby destinations, what information is there that should go in Get out, but cannot go in Get in? Jpatokal 21:29, 26 Jun 2005 (EDT)
I still like "Get out and about" because it suggests the idea of wandering around. It rhymes, it's still fairly short and to use Evan's term, "punchy". -- Mikito 22:48, 24 Jun 2005 (EDT)
Quick summary of where the discussion stands, partially written down as an answer to Evan that can be easily responded to:
  1. "Get out" is misunderstood by new (and some old) users.
  2. Several users of the site seem to feel that the purpose of the section is to list nearby destinations, and changing the heading to make that fact clearer would be helpful.
  3. Evan's argument is that "Get out" is to describe both nearby destinations and how to exit a destination. Myself and a few others seem to feel that for exit information such as departure taxes and "Foo-Bar-Baz" transportation routes, "Get in" is sufficient and is where that information already lives for a number of articles.
  4. So the debate is then whether exit information is needed outside of "Get in", and if not then what the most appropriate header is to make it clear that the section should contain nearby destinations.
My preference would be to lump exit information (if any) into "Get in", and that seems to be a popular opinion. More contentious is the idea of changing the heading name. I would suggest "Nearby destinations", but there seems to be a strong preference to keep the "Get" syntax around, so this is obviously not a popular opinion. -- Wrh2 00:48, 25 Jun 2005 (EDT)
My response: popularity doesn't factor. It's never worked so far for Wikitravel, and it doesn't make strong arguments incorrect. (Ask Jpatokal; his opinions on our sex tourism policy are strong but unpopular). Additionally, it's important to realize that a majority of people who comment on a single talk page in the space of a week are not a majority of Wikitravellers. I know that it's harder to make changes that don't face any opposition, but I can say pretty surely that if we can choose a path here that everyone participating can live with, we're much more likely to have better guides with better participation later.
Evan, no offense, but aren't you now just using the "consensus" gambit to protect your own opinions? If you insist on absolute consensus, meaning that nothing can be changed unless everybody including you agrees, then there's no possibility of ever changing anything that you personally like — no matter how many of Wikitravel's users and administrators disagree with you. This isn't going to lead to a guide that "everyone participating can live with"! Jpatokal 21:43, 26 Jun 2005 (EDT)
Here are my reasons for opposing this change of "Get out": 1) it's predicated on the incorrect assumption that "Get out" is only for listing nearby destinations. 2) "Get in" and "Get out" are nicely parallel; the temporal format of our headers really favors having "Get in" ... "Get out" as bookends for the guide. 3) Even if "Get out" is only for listing nearby destinations, it's still a plenty good name for that section. 4) New contributors will always make mistakes; we can meet them half-way, but we shouldn't sacrifice the quality of the guide to ease of use. I think adding a line to Where you can stick it would be a easier way to solve that issue. 5) The advantages as stated (Making "Get out" be just for nearby destinations, and have a different header name, would be easier for new users to find and contribute to) isn't sufficient to justify changing so many pages. 6) It's been "Get out" for almost 2 years. It's part of the Wikitravel house style that I've grown very fond of, and I'm not really amenable to quick, unconsidered changes.
The biggest reason I see to change the name of this section is that we have a problem with another section, "Drink". "Drink" is for all kinds of nightlife, but as has been pointed out several times, there are a lot of venues where you can't drink, and a lot of people who don't just go out to drink. Unfortunately, most of the other short verbal forms for nightlife use the word out, e.g. "Go out", "Step out", which are easily confused with "Get out". I think that changing "Get out" to... something else would free up the word "out" for use in "Go out" (although this loses the pleasant parallel between "Eat" and "Drink"... c'est la vie). I'd like to see Get in and Get out remain parallel bookends to the guides, and keep entrance and exit info at the beginning and end respectively. Maybe changing "Get in" and "Get out" to "Get there" and "Get away", with "Drink" changed to "Go out" in the process? Not quite as pleasantly opposite, but I can live with it. --Evan 12:20, 26 Jun 2005 (EDT)
One last thing: I find the argument that new users are putting exit info into the "Get out" section to be contradictory to the argument that there is no exit info to put in there. --Evan 13:48, 26 Jun 2005 (EDT)
Here's an answer, although unfortunately it is mostly a repeat of points already brought up in this discussion: Your point #1, that "Get out" is for both exit information and nearby destinations, is one that is agreed upon but which there seems to be some momentum to change, since it is not clear that exit information is common or different enough to merit its own section (it can be included in "Get in" if needed). Your point #2 is agreed on by (seemingly) everyone. Point #3 is where I (and others) disagree. There seems to be a Wikitravel learning curve before new users understand that "Get out" can/does mean "these are nearby destinations you can get out to". Point #4 (new users will always make mistakes) is something everyone agrees with, but the discussion was started in the interest of finding a way to help them make fewer mistakes, and hopefully increase the quality of the guide as a side-benefit. Point #5 (that it's a lot of work) is agreed, and I would not have made the suggestion unless I thought there was a lot to be gained (nearby destinations are very important, and Wikitravel seems to be lacking in them). Point #6 is similar to point #2, and no one seems to disagree with it. Lastly, in answer to the comment that new users are putting exit information into "Get out" is contradictory to the fact that the section isn't being used properly, the point was being made that nearby destinations almost never end up in that section, while the information tends to be of the "you can get out on highway 12" variety, despite "Get in" already having that same information.
I don't have an opinion on the "Drink" --> "Go out" suggestion, but in terms of "Get there" and "Get away", to my mind that's still entry/exit, and it seems like changing those headers would be a ton of work for no real gain (unless people really want "Drink" to become "Go out"). The idea behind changing headers in the first place was simply to make it clear where someone can list nearby destinations, since they are a very, very valuable part of any travel guide.
At this point the discussion seems to be rehashing the same arguments, so I'll hold my tongue unless any new ideas come up, and leave things with my opinion being that "Get in" can be used for any necessary exit information (such as departure taxes) and is already used for that purpose in several articles, and that "Get out" would be better renamed with a title that makes it obvious that its purpose is to display nearby destinations, something Wikitravel seems to be currently lacking. -- Wrh2 14:57, 26 Jun 2005 (EDT)
So, I'd like to address the base problem: Users can't figure out that nearby destinations go into "Get out". Here are some other things we can do to lessen the problem: 1) document it on the template pages (done). 2) Document it in Wikitravel:Where you can stick it (done). 3) Make sure there are good examples of "Get out" sections on lots of guides. (ongoing). 4) Add a "Nearby" sub-section to "Get out" in the template. I think that the drastic measure of removing the Get out section and splitting its content across "Get in" and "Some other new header meaning nearby destinations" is excessive for the scale of the problem. --Evan 10:15, 27 Jun 2005 (EDT)
I fully agree with Wrh2 regarding "Get out". And I oppose "Go out" as it's very open to misinterpretation, esp. by users who aren't native speakers of English. Jpatokal 21:29, 26 Jun 2005 (EDT)
I can't believe this argument is still going after so many edits. It seems to me that the majority are convinced that at least "get out" is a bad heading. It is silly to keep arguing this point as it is pretty much a given and perhaps the argument should move on and concentrate on what to change it to. (Also there is another similar argument on the Article Templates Talk page) --Colin Angus Mackay 03:55, 25 Jun 2005 (EDT)
How about if we avoid the verb form entirely and change "Get away" to "Getaways"? -- Mikito 16:32, 25 Jun 2005 (EDT)
Hey, sorry for sitting this one out for a while, but I've been busy. Plus I haven't always felt comfortable with the tone of this discussion. That said; I don't think the folks arguing here are convinced that Get out is necessarily bad at all, just that there could be something better, and that it's worth considering. For myself, the only problem I've got with Get out actually isn't with Get out itself but with the potential collision with Drink. Contrary to most of the opinions expressed here I do think that a lot of new users are inclined to see Get out as get off your duff and see this fine city.
Of course it's always possible to re-organize stuff. No big deal, we were just tossing out ideas. Oh, I don't like Nearby at all, and I don't think we're likely to reach a consensus on it.
Meanwhile this topic seems to push some buttons for some folks, so maybe it would be better to just agree to come back to it sometime down the road a ways. -- Mark 10:51, 27 Jun 2005 (EDT)

Cope >> Get along[edit]

Just to get away from the Get out / get in / get lost / get away debate....

Would anyone care to voice support or opposition to changing Cope to Get along ??

Personally, as I noted above whilst seconding Mark's support, this sounds a whole lot more positive, less desperate, and fits into the "Get ...." schema...

Comments please! Pjamescowie 15:17, 26 Jun 2005 (EDT)

Get along sounds fine with me. As you said, it fits the "Get..." schema. We'd better not make everything fit the "Get..." pattern, though, or we'll end up with things like "Get a clue" instead of "Understand". -- Mikito 17:13, 26 Jun 2005 (EDT)
Personally, I don't like this. According to the template "Cope" is supposed to be used, among other things, for laundries and computer repair; to me "Get along" sounds a lot more like "Respect". Jpatokal 22:05, 26 Jun 2005 (EDT)
From the article template for cope: "This section is for all those little items that people need to know when they're in a city. Where can you do laundry? Go to a gym? Get computers repaired? Anything that has to do with the practicalities of daily life should go here." While "Get along" is a good alternative for the word "Cope", without reading the article template it isn't necessarily clear that "Get along" means "this is where you do your laundry, workout, and take care of life's mundane details". Off the top of my head "Services" and "Practicalities" are the two best alternatives I can come up with, but sadly neither fits the naming scheme. -- Wrh2 04:33, 27 Jun 2005 (EDT)
There is another phrasal verb: 'Get by -- Mark 10:10, 27 Jun 2005 (EDT)

GetOut: place for info on outgoing flights?[edit]

I have several pieces on outgoing travel [by air] from Vienna and maybe some other places -- like 'When flying from Vienna to Moscow, don't be too hury for boarding, as most Russians appear there right at the deadline time'. Is GetOut a best place for that info? What subtitle would be recommended for this kind of info? --DenisYurkin 13:57, 18 Oct 2005 (EDT)

I think the logical place for any and all airport-related info is in the Get in#By plane section. Splitting it up in several places makes it harder to find. Jpatokal 22:33, 18 Oct 2005 (EDT)

Gay & Lesbian travelers[edit]

Is there som ereason that there's not a section in these templates for Gay & Lesbian travelers? It seems like a common section in most guidebooks, particularly for big or huge cities. -

Wikitravel includes that kind of information (when someone contributes it, of course) in with the rest of the listings. See Wikitravel:Information for gay and lesbian travellers for a more full explanation of why. (Personally, I prefer not having the info segregated, for visibility and all that.) There's also a Travel Topic Gay and lesbian travel with specific info about gay-friendly (and hostile) destinations. - Todd VerBeek 14:46, 22 May 2006 (EDT)

Splurge/Top End[edit]

Have renamed Splurge to Top End - I don't really like the word splurge - maybe its more widely used in America. Hkpatv 21:11, 7 August 2006 (EDT) Reverted by Wrh2 - sorry wasn't aware changes to this had to be agreed. Anybody else want to chip in? Is this best place for discussion?Hkpatv 21:18, 7 August 2006 (EDT)

I'm not opposed to "Top End", but it's potentially a lot of work to change existing articles for what seems like a small improvement. Maybe "splurge" is an uncommon word for a lot of English speakers, in which case this change makes more sense, but otherwise my preference would be to leave the template as-is. -- Ryan 21:23, 7 August 2006 (EDT)
Much agreement. I don't have any attachment whatsoever to the word "splurge", but we should be conservative with this kind of change so we don't have to modify thousands of articles each week depending on arbitrary changes to the templates.
I like "Top end" since it makes the sub-headers parallel, but if I were going to suggest a change here at all, it'd be to change all three elements to verbs, to fit in with the rest of the headers. Maybe "Skimp", "Save", "Splurge"? --Evan 21:34, 7 August 2006 (EDT)
I'd rather leave things just as they are. If it ain't broke, don't fix it. -- Bill-on-the-Hill 22:05, 7 August 2006 (EDT)
I'm with Bill on this. Jpatokal 22:33, 7 August 2006 (EDT)

Eat categories[edit]

Am I the only one who doesn't like the restaurants grouped by cost? I think grouping them by type of cuisine is much more useful, especially when there gets to be a lot of listings-- we are already listing the price range in the individual listings anyway. I realize there is a fat chance of it getting changed, but.. does anyone agree here? Texugo 01:24, 21 August 2006 (EDT)

I kind of like the status quo, because depending on where I'm traveling to and how much my last pay check was I eat at places that can best satisfy my financial needs and allowances.. -- Andrew Haggard (Sapphire) 01:36, 21 August 2006 (EDT)
I just think that if you have, say, 30 restaurants listed like 10 Budget, 18 Mid-range, 2 splurge... grrr. I dunno. Just bugs me. The grand majority of listings will be in one of the first two categories anyway, and pricing is relative to what country you're in. Plus some restaurants have a wide pricing range that makes it hard to put it in one or the other. Texugo 01:47, 21 August 2006 (EDT)
Have you seen the Template:Eatpricerange template that User:Jpatokal created? I think it resolves some of the issues about the different ideas of budget, mid-range, and splurge. I've employed it's use in Cincinnati and I want something similar to that for sleep listings. -- Andrew Haggard (Sapphire) 02:09, 21 August 2006 (EDT)

I'd like to revisit this question, in light of the discussions that have been going on with the Albuquerque article -- justly one of our Stars (really fantastic for content and superbly written), but one where there is a grouping by cuisine that's proving somewhat controversial. "Large" cities pose an organizational problem in articles because of the likelihood that there will be too many interesting restaurants to fit into the usual 9-or-less pattern for lists, yet the lists can't be shortened by districtifying. (After all, avoidance of districts is precisely what distinguishes a "large" city from a "huge" city.) In my opinion a breakout by cuisine type is a viable way of handling that, particularly if the city features a cuisine that's clearly defined and distinctive (as is the case for Albuquerque, "New Mexican cuisine" being what it is). However, it may not be appropriate for all "Large" cities. So how to proceed? My temptation is to say "do whatever is necessary to make an article as good as the Albuquerque one is" -- it's that good -- but specific guidance would be a good thing. -- Bill-on-the-Hill 12:11, 31 March 2008 (EDT)

Hasn't the unwritten policy always been to use "budget / mid-range / splurge" where it makes sense, and if there is a better grouping then use that? Albuquerque's restaurants seem like a good example, just as having a non-standard "Nearby" sub-heading under Yosemite#Sleep (another star) make sense. There was a similar discussion about whether to use something other than "Cities" for regions that contained no cities (such as Falkland Islands) and the consensus was that if it doesn't make sense, use something else. Similarly, in cases where it makes sense let's allow flexibility with sub-headings. -- Ryan • (talk) • 13:10, 31 March 2008 (EDT)
Albuquerque is a unique case, because it has the combination of a large list of restaurants with one very distinctive cuisine that makes up much of those restaurants. Except in those cases, I'd generally be against splitting up every restaurant in terms of cuisine. In fact, San Diego/Old Town does that and it has always struck me as a little excessive - most of the categories have only a few restaurants. PerryPlanet 13:19, 31 March 2008 (EDT)

I used to believe that we always have Budget/Mid-range/Splurge as top-level categories, and they can be sub-categorized by cuisine or some other criteria. At least, it always worked for me with an exceptions (like tapas or sushi or tora fugu) discussed in Wikitravel talk:Restaurant listings#price ranges. If our de-facto policy is different, it make sense to write it down somewhere. --DenisYurkin 16:31, 31 March 2008 (EDT)

Learn and Work[edit]

See also #Learn

I've been thinking about these two sections...with a few exceptions, these sections hardly ever seem to hold much weight. I don't think they should be eliminated, but I feel like they don't work well as sections of their own.

So here's my idea: what if we make Learn and Work sub-sections in Cope? Cope is supposed to be for all those things which deal with "the practicalities of daily life", why not stick Learn and Work in there? PerryPlanet 12:19, 31 October 2008 (EDT)

Personally, I would rather vote on eliminating Work, and to restricting Learn to attraction-like courses, like cooking or making local crafts, and stuff like that. --DenisYurkin 13:03, 31 October 2008 (EDT)
I read it, and I'va gotta say, I like the idea, I mean they just don't really fit much into their own. They can barely come up with on topic information (ones i've seen that're long just end up having stuff on livng there). it doesn't make sense having trhem like thAT. support. keep smiling,Edmontonenthusiast 13:05, 31 October 2008 (EDT)
I agree that Learn should be restricted to attraction-like courses. How to determine if a course is aimed at travellers? I think three criteria should apply
* Should be able to do with a tourist visa, and not require a special student visa.
* Should have local content, i.e content relevant to local culture, or not common throughout the world.
* Should be possible to complete in less than 6 months.
These three criteria will get rid of the lists of universities and colleges that we are getting in some articles, and get more of the local language short courses, cooking, etc that I think we are looking for here. If we can agree this, we can then move on to Work --Inas 01:41, 19 March 2009 (EDT)
Many non-traveller-oriented language courses can easily fit into 6 months. Maybe something shorter, like 1mo or 2mo? Or we can require it that a language course should be exclusively travellers-oriented. --DenisYurkin 04:49, 19 March 2009 (EDT)
I also agree that 6 months is a bit long. I was thinking 3 months max. Texugo 06:52, 19 March 2009 (EDT)
Happy with 3 months. I was thinking six would get rid of degree and diploma courses at universities and similar that generally take a year or longer, but allow a single semester short course. Still I think any longer than 3 months and you are no longer a traveller taking s course, but an international student. --Inas 18:22, 19 March 2009 (EDT)
I think that's a bit too purist -- becoming an exchange student is a popular form of travel, and I think including major universities with foreign exchange programs is fine. Few cities have more than a handful worth mentioning, eg. Tokyo#Learn manages nicely with four.
I do agree that colleges and non-tertiary education (high schools etc) are right out. Jpatokal 02:03, 23 March 2009 (EDT)
In my view helping potential exchange students choose a school/destination is outside of our goals. They are going to have to go through their own institution for that anyway, and practically every university in the US has some kind of exchange program or other. Texugo 03:45, 23 March 2009 (EDT)
Programs, courses, fees, visas, eligibility for exchange. A one liner in wikitravel for a university is not going to be enough for an exchange/international student travel. There are full guides just on student exchange. International students will still come to wikitravel to find out how to get in and around, and what to see when they are there, even if we don't list all the universities and tertiary courses. --Inas 08:25, 23 March 2009 (EDT)
I am fine with removing "learn" and "work" from the city article templates (although I think these sections can be useful at the country level). I don't think we should ban the sections altogether, though. If a destination guide already has such a section with worthwhile content, leave it. While such information is obviously not going to be enough on its own to set someone up with a job or program, it can spark an idea while reading about the destination. Also, often universities can dominate large sections of big cities, and it's useful to have an overview discussion them in the learn section in part just for orientation. Learn sections can also be useful when a city's universities are reasons for travel as well—touring universities is not what we think of as tourism, but it definitely is travel, and we cater to all sorts of travelers here. --Peter Talk 17:11, 1 April 2009 (EDT)
If universities constitute and attraction, they should be in See not in learn. THat way the qualities of the university as an attraction can be listed. Go visit Berkeley, its pretty, and you can wander around. Don't bother trying to visit NYU, the security guards will stop you at the door.
I'm not in favour of removing Learn or work. I think the fact that some towns in Australia are fruit picking towns, which employ travellers on an ad-hoc basis is worth knowing. The fact that you can learn join scientific trips to study whales for 2 weeks, is also worth saying. However a list of universities, with no other information, is of no possible use to a traveller. --Inas 17:19, 1 April 2009 (EDT)
I agree that Wikitravel should not suggest a university to an exchange student, but when looking at the other way, I mean when a traveller loves the city s/he's visiting and looks into possible opportunities for an extended visit there while grabbing the Wikitravel guide to the city, voilà, there is a university in the city accepting exchange students.--Vidimian 11:16, 4 April 2009 (EDT)
This just seems disconnected to me. Love the city - look on wikitravel, find a university, and then enroll in a university as an exchange student? It just isn't the way these things happen. If you want to do a university course overseas, there are applications, there are visas, and living to consider first. Then you have to consider the institution, and their facilities. If you want to do an exchange, you really need to involve your home institution. I really doubt any exchange or university study opportunities have ever become apparent through wikitravel, and even if this were the case, there isn't even any guarantee that the universities listed do offer exchange to a traveller. If you like a destination enough to consider study exchange, Wikitravel is never going to be your guide. There are many other sites that offer comprehensive lists of universities.
However, if you are wanting to do a short course, cultural course, language course, scientific tour, then Wikitravel may well be the guide you choose. --Inas 00:05, 6 April 2009 (EDT)
I'm sure there is a lot of paperwork to enroll as an exchange student, although I didn't go through the situation myself. And I have never thought of Wikitravel as a place which supplies complete guides to any university offering student exchange in any given city. All I'm saying/'ve said is that it can be a starting point, telling the probable traveller above, "it is very well possible, start dreaming and researching more on the subject". Just a little mention. How successful the exchange-student-candidate can be in his/her attempt is the job of other sites, of course. And universities offering no courses whatsoever to the travellers should be totally out (But then what's a "traveller"? Can't someone travelling in his/her home country -and who thus needs no visas or many other legalwork to enroll- considered a traveller?).--Vidimian 11:30, 6 April 2009 (EDT)
I think I'm with Vidimian on this one. I can totally see someone looking at a Wikitravel guide, saying "wow, this city is great - I wonder if there are any universities here?" and then seeing the names of the major ones in said city, which would prompt further research outside of Wikitravel. Of course, you could do the same thing on Wikipedia, which would have more detailed info, and since we link to Wikipedia articles through our travel guides, it's probably not necessary to have universities mentioned on Wikitravel. But I don't really see a problem with it, either. PerryPlanet Talk 13:12, 6 April 2009 (EDT)

So, are we ready for making a decision on removing universities and the courses taking more than 3 months? Any serious objections? --DenisYurkin 06:49, 10 May 2009 (EDT)

If I'm not mistaken, I think about half the comments here, including mine, were objecting in varying degrees to this proposal. But I'm still not sure I understand precisely what the policy change would be. Would this change entail the removal of, say, Chicago#Learn? Would you mind first drafting the wording of a policy here. My hunch is that we can at least find a compromise solution to this problem that would suit everyone. --Peter Talk 16:56, 10 May 2009 (EDT)
I think there is a wider definitional issue coming to the fore here. What is a traveller? I would have said a traveller is someone who stays in a place less than 3 months. This is my personal definition - when I have stayed put for more than 3 months somewhere, I consider myself living there for a while. The accommodation choices change to renting a place, etc. The visa issues change, as most only last for 3 months, and you have to look at getting a local drivers licence. If it is accepted that this is the definition of a traveller - the learn section falls into place. It won't include 3 year degree courses, as these are for someone who isn't travelling, but moving somewhere for 3 years. There are whole range of issues to then be considered, different to what we have here on wikitravel. Different visa, different accommodation. We just don't have that stuff here. For example we delete long term rentals, under our accommodation listing policy. Universities could still find a place under See it they were attractions, or under Learn if they offer unique short courses of interest to travellers, or under Understand if it was a university town, with university culture to be explored. --Inas 23:14, 10 May 2009 (EDT)

Section Order - Stay safe and Contact..[edit]

There is a benefit in maintaining a standard order of sections between articles. When a common section is added to articles that isn't in the template for that article type, it is clear where the section goes, as the ordering is always the same. Currently there are a couple of variations in the order of sections between article types. I can see a reason for Get around appearing in a different area in country level articles, however I believe that the differences in the ordering of Stay safe and Contact sections was probably just an oversight. Can anyone see any legitimate reasoning here, or can I just align the ordering of these sections between the two templates? --inas 21:22, 25 June 2009 (EDT)

It's an oversight, please go ahead. --Peter Talk 22:32, 25 June 2009 (EDT)
done. --inas 21:13, 28 June 2009 (EDT)
The order is still unclear. This page has Stay Safe above Contact, while the Wikitravel:Quick_big_city_article_template has Contact above Stay Safe. Chicago and San Francisco have Stay Safe above Contact, while Washington, D.C. and New York City have Contact above Stay Safe. What should it be? --globe-trotter 12:02, 26 July 2011 (EDT)
Go with this page; the templates are less often updated. LtPowers 13:10, 26 July 2011 (EDT)
It's even more confusing. The Big city article template (and its quick version) has Stay safe first, then Contact. The Huge city article template (and its quick version) has Contact first, then Stay safe. Following this discussion, I believe the big city article is now in the correct order, so I will update the huge city template accordingly. I'll hear it if anyone has a problem with that. --globe-trotter 15:29, 14 October 2011 (EDT)


The Sydney article has a Read section as a top level heading. The Chicago article has a similar thing as a third level heading beneath Understand, at Chicago#Literature. I must say, I prefer Read - as it is in the imperative wt style. I prefer it being a third level heading beneath Understand. Is there any policy anywhere I have missed, other precedents or opinions? --inas 22:03, 10 January 2010 (EST)

I don't feel strongly either way, but our third level headings are usually nouns. --Peter Talk 00:11, 11 January 2010 (EST)
Yeah, maybe - Certainly with headings such as Splurge, By car, we are not afraid to stray from regular nouns.. Oh - and I just noticed South Korea uses Books for the same thing, so that is three varieties at least. --inas 01:01, 11 January 2010 (EST)
4. Bali uses Reading. --Burmesedays 01:10, 11 January 2010 (EST)
I prefer the noun. It's not imperative that a traveler read all of those books — they're a supplement. There are probably a few variations on 'Climate' from article to article, too, but I doubt any of them are an imperative verb. ('Dress'? 'Feel'?) Gorilla Jones 08:04, 11 January 2010 (EST)
Do you have a preference from the available nouns. Books, Reading, and Literature seem to be on the list - others? Do we have a consensus that a subheading of the Understand is the place for this information, and that the current Sydney second level heading is wrong? --inas 16:56, 11 January 2010 (EST)
I like Books — good match with a Movies or Films section, which might follow it (as with Chicago#Movies). Literature is fine as well, though. I'd agree with making it a third level heading as described above. Gorilla Jones 00:08, 12 January 2010 (EST)
I'm happy with Books too. Literature has an advantage that it may stop people adding travel guides, but has shades of meaning in different contexts. (academic, classics, advertising etc). Oh, and Myanmar uses Suggested Reading, so that is 5. --inas 00:14, 12 January 2010 (EST)

Wikitravel:Where you can stick it says "Read", which fits our imperative style, so that's what I've been using. LtPowers 20:05, 3 March 2010 (EST)


swept from pub:

See also #Learn and Work

I have been struggling to understand the real purpose of our learn sections. Three templates include this as a standard section and the pointer texts are:

  • Country: Information about schools and classes for language, culture, or other activities that international travelers may be interested in. Note cities where there are large international student opportunities. This can be about general stuff, with contact info and other specifics in the city guides.
  • Huge City and Large City: If there are opportunities for travellers to study in this city -- from language to cooking classes up to full university courses -- add that here.

The country template text seems to get it right emphasising language and cultural education opportunities. That makes a lot of sense in a travel guide. The city templates though start talking about full time uni courses. That seems like open season for listings of conventional universities. And it happens. I hate to pick on South Asian articles again but there are lots of lists of universities in those. What use is that for a traveller? Surely, nobody will decide to enroll on a four year civil engineering degree course at a university due to a mention in a travel guide? If there is already a discussion along these lines, then please post a link here. --Burmesedays 09:51, 3 March 2010 (EST)

I believe that "Learn" was originally created due to the fact that people were including study abroad programs and foreign language classes in articles and we had nowhere to put them. That said, I can't say as I recall ever seeing a well-written "Learn" section - if anyone knows of one and could provide a pointer it would help guide this discussion since at the moment it's not entirely clear what should go in this section, and as a result we get everything from technical colleges to cooking schools to yoga classes, most of which is of questionable value to a traveler. -- Ryan • (talk) • 15:20, 3 March 2010 (EST)
We had a very inconclusive but somewhat interesting discussion about learn (and work) here. I can't say whether Chicago#Learn is a good example of what we want (since I don't think we know what we want), but it is at least well curated. For the U.S., at least, touring colleges is something a good portion of the 11th and 12th year high school students do before choosing their college/university of choice—this is a pretty significant bit of domestic travel. As that discussion makes clear, there isn't any consensus on what this section should be used for, but personally I think that in a big city article like Chicago, it is useful to know which universities are where and whether they are near each other. --Peter Talk 15:32, 3 March 2010 (EST)
I think Inas summed it up well at the end of that discussion questioning what is a traveller, to aid us in serving them. My best friend did one year travelling with his wife, I think they're a good benchmark - they did a two week Spanish course on arrival in South America to help them cope, and a couple of cookery courses (each of 1-3 days duration) as a way of enjoying the local culture at places on their travels. By that sort of benchmark, neither the university one-semester course listings nor the descriptions of the universities as nice places to wander round, are of much use. The same logic applies for the Work sections - I think we want casual bar work, fruit picking work, casual tefl work, lasting weeks and some info on how much the traveller can get away with doing under the radar of formal work permits in that particular regime. Andyfarrell 17:51, 3 March 2010 (EST)

I'm not sure how many regulars here have actually studied abroad, but at most universities (in the U.S.), the Study Abroad Offices typically have specific providers chosen from which students can pick from. Finding others is usually possible, but there's more to the process and credits are often not guaranteed to transfer. Also, those that are outside of major cities are often those with special relationships with specific universities that are not open for other students to join. If a student wants to find a study abroad program in a specific nation or city, they should visit iiepassport or for a general overview, but more importantly, they must consult their study abroad office or whoever deals with this at their university. I don't think that a student would be inspired by our website to choose a city; I think our website would better serve them if they were considering two programs and wanted to see which city seemed more interesting. Because of this, I think it is mostly useless to have the "Learn" section in city guides. I agree with Peter that it is useful at the country-level. There, we can list some of the most popular (or those with the most foreign affiliations) and let the students take it from there. Advising students on study abroad is way beyond our scope!

Most nations only have a handful of cities for foreign students anyway. For large nations that have a lot of popular options, like the U.S., perhaps going to a lower-level would be okay, but for most, we could easily nix this section from the city guides. I think a traveller taking a class is more likely to want a class that is one evening or a few days so that they can continue travelling. For these kinds of classes (which I think are usually cultural experiences), they could easily be options under "Do".

Work may be kind of similar... Will someone really find a job from our travel guide? Our Teaching English article is worthwhile, but that is focused and specific. I think this one could generally be left at the country level, as well... ChubbyWimbus 21:51, 3 March 2010 (EST)

Any more thoughts on this? I was just looking at the South African country article and saw all those Unis listed there. I am really struggling to see the point of that in a travel guide.--Burmesedays 12:19, 2 April 2010 (EDT)
Well my opinion was well summarised above. When I have stayed anywhere for longer than 6 months I no longer consider myself a traveller, but I'm settled for a while. An exchange student isn't a traveller, they are an exchange student. So, I don't think we have the space to do justice to the foreign exchange student, or the person seeking to work somewhere for a year or two - we will lose the travel focus of our guide if we do that. We would have to give details on 12 month house rentals, college accommodation etc. So we want info on short term work the traveller can do and any legal info that is relevant. Similarly for learn. If the universities are destinations, they should be in see. --inas 04:13, 3 April 2010 (EDT)
So, is there anyone who would see this edit [1] as adding any value to a traveller? --inas 01:38, 9 April 2010 (EDT)
Yeah, it's very difficult to see how that could be useful. Maybe they're not even useful at the country level. Perhaps they are just points of reference on city maps. ChubbyWimbus 03:02, 9 April 2010 (EDT)
None whatsoever.--Burmesedays 06:27, 9 April 2010 (EDT)
I assume you don't mean the formatting but rather the addition of the list in the first place? Because the addition of asterisks to produce bullets is definitely a good idea. =) LtPowers 10:30, 9 April 2010 (EDT)

Stay Healthy[edit]

We have traditionally not used Stay Healthy outside of Country or large Region articles, incorporating health information into Stay Safe. Is there a reason to change that now? LtPowers 19:36, 14 October 2011 (EDT)

I also would prefer to omit stay healthy from city articles. --Peter Talk 19:51, 14 October 2011 (EDT)