It can sometimes just be a simple slip up, an admin error. When the hotel welcome card says “Mr and Mrs” instead of “Mr and Mr”, it’s something that as a gay traveller you just shrug your shoulders at and go “here we go again”. There’s no malice involved, just an assumption.
However, there are other times when being a GLBT+ tourist doesn’t come without its own set of anxieties. “Are the staff going to be gay-friendly?”, “will I get strange looks when two guys order a double bedroom?” or even a simple “should we hold hands in public?”.
Even to this day in our supposedly more enlightened time I still scour the face of the hotel receptionist for any perceived slight. Will there be an eyebrow raised when the penny drops, was that a sharp intake of breath? We may be more liberated but the stain of years of being a second-class citizen is hard to wash away.
A recent Virgin Holidays survey of 1000 GLBT+ couples found that nearly 100 per cent of them were worried about showing affection when on holiday. Nearly 100 per cent!! That compared to 84 per cent of straight couples who were at ease showing a partner affection.