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What makes Poland different from other countries

19 Sep 2006 /  #1
hello everyone!!!

I need you help!

i'm a graphic design student at mass college of art in boston, and i'm doing my senior degree project on poland ( my motherland btw)

i'm looking to get some feedback from you (preferably from forigners living in poland or from polish people that have been living abroud for a while) on :

1)what makes poland different from other countries?

2)what is you favorite and least favorite thing about poland (tourism- wise)

i'm polish, so i know about the unemployment and all that staff, i'm more interested in what poland has to offer to young tourists, it nightlife?...are there any interesting clubs etc.

i know it's very vague at this point...but that's why i need you help!

thanks a million!
19 Sep 2006 /  #2
1) People I think?
2) Favourite - some historic places haven't been commercialized yet. Not favourite - not too many facilities, not very good service.
OP yeahIknow  
19 Sep 2006 /  #3
thnks tlum that was quick......

what about the people?
19 Sep 2006 /  #4
People -- well, you'll notice what Polish people are like by watching and reading this forum :).
OP yeahIknow  
19 Sep 2006 /  #5
i have been....and jestem z polski......but it's hard to kind of step back at look at ourselves form the outside (getting a lillte psychological here:)........................i just need a view of an outsider!

i know that we are sarcastic....don't take ourselves seriously...etc.....but how is that goi8ng to affect a forigner visiting poland.......what kind of experience they can get from it!

also i',ve been reading wujek_dobtra_rada (he sounds like a good guy)and lef (...that seems to hate everything about poland)
it's kind of hard to find a middle ground here

once i'm done with my project i'll publish it online so you'll all see it! and i'll credit this forum for help!
Wroclaw 44 | 5,384  
19 Sep 2006 /  #6

Tourism seems to be doing well in Poland. Just look at Krakow.

But, here in Wroclaw we have a local government who are only interested in bringing in Foreign Business concerns. Banks, IT developers and so on.

Tourism doesn't seem to be on the agenda. You won't hear many different languages spoken in Wroclaw town centre.

There is nothing really special to put Wroclaw on the map. No alternative architecture, no big wheel [as in London ] Nothing for people to say "Wow ! I've got to see this place"

To prove my point try to find posts on these boards where people say "I must go to Wroclaw"

That said. Wroclaw is a beautiful city. But it is a city for young people who are only interested in "Rynek" and afternoon strolls along the river. You can do all the sights in one weekend and this shouldn't be the case for the fourth biggest city in Poland. For size Wroclaw would be in the top five when compared to British cities

Don't get me wrong, I love this city. It's just that it has so much potential and no-one is doing anything to capitalize on it.

I'm sure there are plenty of people who'll come back at me and say "What about ........"

"Wroclaw The Meeting Place" [yeah, for business]

"Wroclaw The City Of One Hundred Bridges" [and who outside Wroclaw knew that]

London is said to make more money from tourism than business. You would think that they could make a little more effort to make tourism work here.
OP yeahIknow  
19 Sep 2006 /  #7
but there has to something else...the essence....i'm not trying to make any polish city "a second london" that's not the point...i think that in the long run what's goin to attract people to poland would be that unique thing that makes it different

frank what do you think? what is soo unque about it?
Wroclaw 44 | 5,384  
19 Sep 2006 /  #8

'what's going to attract people to Poland' As I'm sure you know there are many people who can't find Poland on a map. The first thing that is going to attract them is an awarensess of something different. The way of life, elements of culture [people in national costume for example] music, a sense of history, etc.

"a second London" I don't want a second London. I want Wroclaw to use London as a model to attract visitors. But you need something to bring them here. Why would anyone want to come all the way from England to visit a church or park. We need people to sell the idea that they [visitors] will find something different. Then when they are here they will soak up the essence of the country.

What that essence is, I can't define.

Here is an example of what we have to contend with.
"Oh, Rynek. It is beautiful. But then again it's not much different to any German city".

The point I'm making here is that visitors to Poland have already seen something similar and we have to educate them that there is more to it.
lef 11 | 478  
19 Sep 2006 /  #9
also i',ve been reading wujek_dobtra_rada (he sounds like a good guy)and lef (...that seems to hate everything about poland)

I find this remark about me insulting, if a person is critical of things in poland doesn't mean he is anti polish.. as a preface, I have been to poland 10 times in the last 20 years and have seen most of poland, I believe I am well qualified to speak about life in poland..

Firstly Poland is a beautiful country, just like the USA, Australia. New Zealand, Fiji, etc, what attracts me to poland is the people, traditions, and the way of life...(although things are changing and people are now more interested in making money and have deserted old values.)

The polish people cannot be blammed for the currrent situation as this country has been ruined by bad governments including the communist era.

To be frank when you talk about tourism in poland, the things which attact people to poland is Krakow and cheap grog, girls and food. Rest assured when prices match those of other countries like UK and USA, poland will have very little tourist..

Things that annoy me in poland. low grade hotels charging high prices, poor roads, having to pay to use a toilet, and almost everything you want you need to bribe.

Poles are not developing a amercian mentality, which I find revolting.

Am I anti polish, I don't think so.
OP yeahIknow  
19 Sep 2006 /  #10

thanks for the insightfull answer!!---was very helpfull

i know all that...already, what i'm trying to figure out is that's hard to do since i haven't travelled back home in over 6 years, and beofer that i haven't really travel that much!

thanks again!


don't be such a baby! i didn't mean to hurt your feelings

i agree with you about a lot of the things you wrote about (not everything ofcourse :)....i'm really interested to hear what do YOU like about poland? i know you wrote people but what abou them...traditions...again why?

what about the way of life...what is so attarctive about it?
20 Sep 2006 /  #11
Okay my first visit to Poland was July, I found it an amazing place, so much to offer - beautiful to visit, culturally rich - bars and nightlife amazing... food fantastic and people were pretty nice and polite.

the only gripe I have is the service is terrible, they're slow and dont really have the whole "customer service" ethos sussed out yet....maybe that will come in time, or at least I hope so, whilst I'm on my holiday and dont mind waiting but waiting 20 minutes for the bill at restaurant where the staff aren't exactly rushed off their feet is just pure and simple bad service....
Kowalski 7 | 621  
20 Sep 2006 /  #12
I agree that custome service is generally bad in Poland. I'm having it almost daily and everywhere, from grocery store to phone manners presented by people who are suppesed to help. In case of restaurants though the stuff sometimes is reluctant to show you the bill first and they wait for you to ask for it. As if they wouldn't like to sugest that you must leave.

Still in many places waiting stuff is plain bad and goes on in some type of ritual full of manierism or something. Well, I heard from an American visitor to Poland that is is very fine to be served be real people instead of trained customer service reps with fake smiles and being after your money.
OP yeahIknow  
20 Sep 2006 /  #13
thank you soooooo much, your input is very helpful!

i think i remember this thing about customer service in poland (or luck of it:)...mabye i should come up with a campaign on importance of customer service in poland?

i think US has a generally great service anywhere you go, i wish poland was the same, but i agree with shelly that Poland needs more time to understand that in order to compete in today's world you have to make your customers feel like kings!


thanks for your time
20 Sep 2006 /  #14
yeahIknow - work in retail and if you want any tips on customer service please dont hesitate to email for any details, my region comes top out the company in all our service waves..

I think that why the service thing really peerved me...

Oh by the way I liked Poland that much I'm off back in Dec and then again in it wasnt that bad..
Wroclaw 44 | 5,384  
20 Sep 2006 /  #15

Just a thought. If you want to find the essence of Poland then I think Christmas time might be the time to find it. Traditions and way of life are very different at Christmas. Where else in the world, on the coldest day, would your mother say "Put your coat on, open the windows and clean them" The rest of the world would think us mad. :) It's about how we do things at this time of year.

Regarding your second question in post#1. I'd like to see more tourists in winter. For skiing, traditional music around a log fire, the list goes on.

Also, are you aware of wildlife tours which are available in Poland. Fishing holidays. There are also battlefield tours.
iwona 12 | 542  
20 Sep 2006 /  #16
I agree that customer service in Poland is not great. I think that people are still rude they miss some manners.
But I wouldn't say that customer service is so great un UK or USA.

Ok, in UK in general everyone is polite but not always helpful. You can also say in polite way And in shops they are so pushy to sell you store cards. I find it annoying . Last time I was in BHS and woman there was so pushy....someone said that thye should hear 3 times no to stop. After 3 times I could get rather angry.
OP yeahIknow  
20 Sep 2006 /  #17

thanks again, i never even thought of the winter time, do you know a good online recourse that would have more info about winter activities and traditions in poland

aslo the wild life and battle field tours plus fishing holidays sound like a fantastic idea! where do I get more information about them?


thanks for the offer, but i was just joking about the campaign :), nontheless it would be a good idea!


i realize that neither usa nor uk are perfect when it comes to customer service, i hate being harrased by the telemarketers....however most times when you go out to the reustarant or to the bar you get a good service,

the only thing i hate is that people assume i'm a bad tipper just becuse i have an accent! which is not true because i always live 20% or more... otherwise i'm very happy
iwona 12 | 542  
20 Sep 2006 /  #18
I was thinking about 1st of November, All Souls Day.

It is very special day in Poland.Family members from all over the country meet together at family grave. It seem to be sad but it is special day for me. My husband is English I can't explain it to him. he has to go with me one day and see.It is time of silence, looking into yourself, muse....

Especially in the evening when it gets dark and all lights shine...

I suppose as way of life we are quite family orientated I mean we can argue, shout at each other but in general we are quite loyal.

Yes, I think we are quite loyal as nation.
OP yeahIknow  
20 Sep 2006 /  #19

you just gave me something to think about!!!!

i must agree with you

Polish are loyal not only to a family but also friends,
it seems that once you are someones friend you stay this way for life
Wroclaw 44 | 5,384  
20 Sep 2006 /  #20

Check the mushroom picking thread.

I'll get back to you on the other points.
OP yeahIknow  
20 Sep 2006 /  #21
ok thanks!


i must be retarded....but where's the mushroom picking thread again?
Wroclaw 44 | 5,384  
20 Sep 2006 /  #22
14th on Latest Discussions. scroll down the home page.
lef 11 | 478  
20 Sep 2006 /  #23
Just a thought. If you want to find the essence of Poland then I think Christmas time might be the time to find it. Traditions and way of life are very different at Christmas.

It is very special day in Poland.Family members from all over the country meet together at family grave

Those two points I agree with and make poland different to other countries, Traditions and enjoying the small things of life is what I like about poland, enjoying mushroom picking and only getting a few and nights around a table singing and enjoying a vodka appeals to me.

Customer service is much better now, and more so in private shops.
One thing that has made poland atractive for tourist is the buying power of the oxford scholar, I might add that when that equals the polish zlote, few people will be visiting poland.

Hygiene and public toilets needs to be improved, and poles need to be more easy going.

As for tourist attractions, apart from some castles and old churches not much to offer, better beaches and mountains elsewhere..

Are poles loyal to each other... answer listen to what goes on in polish politics
OP yeahIknow  
20 Sep 2006 /  #24

thanks for you input

i still think that Poland is a great country that has more to offer then just cheap goods, not everyone is looking for the same old crap when they travell...sometimes people want to experinece something different, esspecially americans

it might not appeal to you personally but i'm sure there's people out there that are going to appriciate places like poland,
lef 11 | 478  
20 Sep 2006 /  #25
still think that Poland is a great country that has more to offer then just cheap goods

You have made a big statement here, please explain yourself?

it might not appeal to you personally

As you grow older values and returning to roots mean more than money or good lifestyle, the point is that poland appeals to a lot of people, including the poms who buy cheap grog and are able to display there bad behavior without being dealt by the law..Believe me once the value of the dollar decreases so will the tourist.,

I'm not anti polish, just sharing my experieces...
OP yeahIknow  
20 Sep 2006 /  #26
First off, Thank you for sharing your experiences, this helps my research enormously.

What I meant by my statement of people enjoying Poland other than for the cheap goods is that there is so much culture (obviously since you cannot stay away) and things to enjoy. I want to bring this out in order to avoid people like the Poms coming to Poland for cheap thrills. Those are not the people who would be happy with a positive campaign aimed at culture, people, and economy. The Poms have one thing in mind and it is not to absorb the culture but to exploit it. This is why there might be a lack of quality, noone is looking for it just yet. Once you can get a better quality of people with positive critism, it will push the shop keepers and tavern owners to make better quality products and service. This will not happen over night but it will happen.

Having a pesimistic attitude "saying once the dollar increases so will the tourism" is a statement made by a person who is not willing to accept that Poland is growing. You are saying that Poland is only wanting short term growth that doesn't amount to any economic change. On the contrary, over one million people have left Poland looking for more profitable way of living. They will realize in the future that the profits of staying in Poland will far exceed the minimal proceeds received elsewhere especially if there is a huge multi-national tourist trade bringing new endurance for a country struggling to get back on its feet.

These are some of my personal opinions and not meant to offend you.


It seems like you have had a bad experience with something in Poland but used to love it before. What changed your opinion?
wolfman - | 5  
13 Jan 2008 /  #27
[quote=yeahIknow] once i'm done with my project i'll publish it online so you'll all see it! and i'll credit this forum for help!

Seanus 15 | 19,706  
2 Feb 2008 /  #28
The ubiquitous Maluch, they are everywhere.
PeterCpt 2 | 37  
18 Feb 2008 /  #29
Least favourite thing - many people are just rude. Its improving but its still bad.
outintheyard 27 | 517  
20 Feb 2008 /  #30
I do not like rude places. Are the ladies rude too? That would be bad

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