Wikivoyage talk:Country article template

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"Understand" section[edit]

What?! There's no heading for what the people of the country are like.. possibly one of the most important things about visiting a country!

I believe that would go under Understand. Also, check out using talk pages. -- (WT-en) Evan 12:21, 9 Nov 2003 (PST)

Template implementation[edit]

So, after a big overhaul of the country article template -- based a lot on comments on the CIA factbook imports, and common practice for pages -- I've tested it out with a big rewrite of United States of America. Any comments on the template? On the implementation in the USA page? -- (WT-en) Evan 09:30, 14 Nov 2003 (PST)

Template for a very small country[edit]

What template do I use for a country like Singapore which is a small as a city? A mix of city and country template? (WT-en) Srijith

Hmmm. I have two thoughts on this. Singapore, as far as I know, actually has a couple of other much smaller cities, right? So one way to handle it is to do Singapore (country), with the country template, and then do Singapore (city) as well as... hmmm... I think it's Victoria (Singapore)?... and whatever other villages there are. Another possibility is just using the huge city article template and making the other cities districts of Singapore. Then you could add in the sections from the country template that aren't in the city template -- Talk, etc. I think it boils down to how independent the other cities in Singapore-the-country are -- are they really destinations of their own, or just neighborhoods of Singapore that happen to have a mayor? It's your call, in other words. -- (WT-en) Evan 05:39, 13 Nov 2003 (PST)
Singapore is divided into smaller parts only for election constituencies. There are no seperate official cities/towns in Singapore. No mayor etc. So the intutive thing to do would be to use the huge city article template and modify where required.(WT-en) Srijith 23:04, 16 Nov 2003 (PST)
Cool! That sounds excellent. -- (WT-en) Evan 06:53, 17 Nov 2003 (PST)

Visa Requirements[edit]

Moved from travellers' pub by (WT-en) Evan

How about including comments (or a table) within Country articles discussing Visa Requements? --(WT-en) Caffeine 05:19, 2 Jan 2004 (PST)

It's supposed to be in the Get in section, I believe. --(WT-en) Evan 07:09, 2 Jan 2004 (PST)


Discussion swept in from Pub

Should we add information about VISA requirments for every country? I know it's wanted information (WT-en) Bong 12:38, 30 Dec 2004 (EST)

Have a look at Project:Country_article_template#Get_in concerning Visa Requirements. -- (WT-en) Huttite 16:38, 31 Dec 2004 (EST)
Besides listing this info on every country it would be cool to have a more general article about acquiring VISAs, explaining the procedure, and giving an indication of the cost... (WT-en) Guaka 10:00, 9 Jan 2005 (EST)
Since the requirements for VISAs are dependent on the issuing country (where you want to travel), how about a two-pronged approach: have a page about getting them, with sections (subpages?) for the different countries, and a section on the country page on where to get it.
So, if you want to go from A to B, you check the VISA page on B whether you need one and how to get it, and then A (your current location) for where to get it (where's an embassy/consulate). --(WT-en) Jae 13:48, 20 Jan 2005 (EST)

I certainly think the best way to do this is include a Customs and Immigration subsection of the Get In section. It should be in the template to encourage it being added. Most of the time entry information is simple enough to not need a whole seperate page as suggested, including it within the article is easy. An example: Visitors from the USA, Canada and EU member nations do not require a visa, those from all other nations should obtain a visa prior to arrival. "prior to arrival" could be linked to a general article about how to apply for visas. (WT-en) Russeasby 20:09, 10 September 2006 (EDT)

I am suprised no one has commented on this. VISA requirements are a very important part of travel and the vast majority of articles on wikivoyage lack any information at all about them. I would be more then glad to go nuts adding this info to country articles in wikivoyage, but not unless there is some standard for it and its including in the template. (WT-en) Russeasby 19:54, 13 September 2006 (EDT)
The 'standard' right now is to place the visa info right at the top of the Get in section. This makes a lot of sense to me: you need to know whether you can go before deciding how to get there. (WT-en) Jpatokal 04:51, 14 September 2006 (EDT)
I realize that, I am just suggesting an actual header added to the template within Get In section for Customs and Immigration, having it in the template would encourage more people to actually fill in this very important information. Why is this not a good idea? (WT-en) Russeasby 08:32, 14 September 2006 (EDT)
Because I don't see why we need an additional header for it. If customs and immigration goes in its own section, what goes in the empty space between "Get in" and "C&I"? (WT-en) Jpatokal 09:18, 14 September 2006 (EDT)
Why does something have to go in it? There is nothing wrong with Get In being nothing more then a header for the following subsections, and I am sure people will come up with things to go in there. If your only reason for not wanting to include a subsection for Customs and Immigration is because you dont like the way it might look, then perhaps the entire template is flawed and needs to be revisited, there is something wrong if this extreamly important traveler information is not able to have a specific section when far more minor things do. When editors visit these pages and see an empty C&I section they are more likely to fill it in. (WT-en) Russeasby 09:27, 14 September 2006 (EDT)
I wanted to note as well that China is a good example of how I am suggesting the template be changed, a Visa subsection was added to it, it looks fine and the subsection also allows the Visa entry to be listed in the contents for the article. Though personally I prefer it to be titled Customs and Immigration, as information about import duties on goods you bring into the country is also relevent, I will relent on the naming of the subsection and mainly just want to see it added reguardless of name. (WT-en) Russeasby 09:33, 14 September 2006 (EDT)
Changes to the article templates are extremely rare, and we've been hesitant in the past to add a lot of second-level headers. Visa info is already specifically called out for the "Get in" section before the "By..." sub-sections. It is filled in for many countries, and I don't think that the lack of a specific sub-heading has kept people from adding the info. --(WT-en) Evan 09:36, 14 September 2006 (EDT)

External links[edit]

Hey, I was just looking at the external links sections of some countries and realized that it might be more print-friendly to have the actual url as well as the site name. For example:

  • [http:/ Great site]

Isn't as useful printed out as

Sure, some of the urls will be ugly, but I can imagine how annoying it would be to have printed out a page that you know had the tourist site on it and then not be able to see it offline. OTOH, are urls usefull offline? Maybe to give to someone else? (WT-en) Majnoona 15:37, 6 Mar 2004 (EST)

Boilerplate text[edit]

I notice that several times this and other template articles have been copied onto a country page. The latest was Ireland. I have been thinking that there should be some boilerplate text at the top of the page that could be quickly copied rather than having to edit the whole template. It could be something like this:

==Other destinations==
==Get in==
===By plane===
===By train===
===By car===
===By bus===
===By boat===
==Get around==
==Stay safe==
==Stay healthy==
==External links==

We should make it easy for people. -- (WT-en) Huttite 08:08, 1 Apr 2004 (EST)

Indeed! --(WT-en) Evan 11:10, 1 Apr 2004 (EST)

Do people think we need something about public holidays? Obviously the dates change from year to year but most of them follow rules ie second monday in March or whatever. (WT-en) Caroline 16:51, 31 Jul 2004 (EDT)

I think it's a good idea. Catholic countries have holidays that the uninitiated Protestant has never heard of, and many countries have a national day. Israel and Muslim and Hindu countries make things difficult by having different calendars - e.g. Yom Kippur is always waxing gibbous in the early fall, but the date varies on the Gregorian calendar. -(WT-en) phma 21:21, 1 Aug 2004 (EDT)

Where do we write the time zone? I think that's pretty relevant to travelers.

I'd say that fits in "Understand" for countries and/or regions(WT-en) Majnoona 20:41, 24 Oct 2004 (EDT)

For discussion - Include a UNESCO World Heritage list section?[edit]

I've plunged forward and added a section on Tunisia positioned between Cities and Other destinations. I have considered the UNESCO World Heritage List (WHL) but would regard this as an index. I believe these sites are of such fundamental interest to travellers they deserve a separate section on the Country page. I also agree with the WHL style that the title should be exactly that as inscribed on UNESCO's list to avoid ambiguity, and in adoption date order as on UNESCO's site, which is an easy resource when contributing.

It seems the linking discussed in WHL talk has met with concensus, apart from my opinion that WHL sites should go on the Country page. My argument is much the same as that for significant cities - to prevent users having to drop in and out of Region/City pages to find them. This is particularly true of isolated sites which will be redirected to the nearest City likely to have Sleep data, which is a sensible, but arbitrary choice.

I also think the description should be a one or two line summary of nothing but the reasons for UNESCO adoption/inscription because that describes the specific interest of the place. I don't see a problem with a duplicate entry in cities, e.g. 'Islamic Cairo' in WHL section and Cairo in Cities, because there are so few cities which meet the criteria for inclusion in both. I rejected my idea of putting the descriptions on the WHL page because I think this is best left as an indexing tool.

One thing to consider in your deliberations is that tourist destinations often become WH listed, and we don't want to have huge edits forced upon us. It would be good to adopt a structure where the WHL page could be automatically propagated to the Country pages periodically. UNESCO have two selection meetings a year.

Oh, and am I correct to link any references to World Heritage site back to WHL? --(WT-en) Richard 2005 Jan 17

I think that places on the UNESCO World Heritage List should be listed in the country article under the sections where they naturally fall. I do not think a separate template section is necessary, although a subsection under one of the template sections could be appropriate. Some of these places are regions, cities or destinations in their own right and deserve articles, while others are just a building or area of land. The variety means these places do not always fit into a single template category. For example, some UNESCO World Heritage list places in New Zealand, like Fiordland, are considered whole regions of the country.
Also, definitely link back to the UNESCO World Heritage list If you linked to using a section link like so [[UNESCO World Heritage List#Country|UNESCO World Heritage places in the Country]] then you link immediately to the section in the list that shows all the WHL places in the country. -- (WT-en) Huttite 03:51, 18 Jan 2005 (EST)


One thing which doesn't fit comfortably anywhere in the current template is the country's electrical system (110/220V, what kind of plug, etc). Any ideas? One possibility would be to add a line to the quickbox... (WT-en) Jpatokal 01:59, 5 Feb 2005 (EST)

How about it being a subsection under the ==Cope== section. -- (WT-en) Huttite 02:28, 5 Feb 2005 (EST)
The Cope section is not a part of the standard templates. Should it be added? (WT-en) Jpatokal 03:36, 5 Feb 2005 (EST)
It's in the Project:Big city article template, but not on this one. --(WT-en) Evan 07:53, 5 Feb 2005 (EST)
It's also missing from the Huge city template. But as written, the description doesn't really make sense for entire countries:
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.
One more thing missing from the templates: where to put embassies/consulates for other countries. (WT-en) Jpatokal 08:46, 5 Feb 2005 (EST)
I suggest to make a special Plug type page with an overview of all the different socket/plug types worldwide, including photographs and a small icon. This icon can now be put in the country quickfacts together with voltage and frequency and a link to the plug type page. This is handier then a teadious description for every country. (WT-en) Ronald 15:42, 4 Feb 2006 (EST)

Quick bar standardization[edit]

Electricity230V/50Hz (British plug)
Calling code+66
Time zoneUTC+8

I suggest the following lines be added to all the World Factbook quick bars:

  • Electricity volts/hertz (plug type)
  • Calling code +NN
  • Internet TLD .xx
  • Time zone UTC±N (UTC±M in summer)

Comments? See example box from Singapore. (WT-en) Jpatokal 02:05, 5 Feb 2005 (EST)

Teaser pic atop infobox[edit]

I've always found infoboxes a rather dull way to start a country article, so I tried adding a picture atop the Singapore infobox. Comments? 12:11, 28 Dec 2005 (EST)

Me too. I'd love to move the infoboxes to a template and then figure out how to stick them at the end of the article. Anyways, yes, that looks good. --(WT-en) Evan 12:29, 28 Dec 2005 (EST)

Money section[edit]

In Russia, Morocco and probably other countries separate sections for Money exist. Is it time to add a Money section under Buy in this template? --(WT-en) DenisYurkin 18:51, 2 December 2006 (EST)

That might be a good idea, but I don't think it should be under the "Buy" section, but rather an independent header or under the "Understand" section. -- (WT-en) Andrew H. (Sapphire) 19:40, 2 December 2006 (EST)
Have a look at the description under Project:Country article template#Buy - I think the description covers everything you want included. Therefore, aside from better-organizing the content within the "Buy" section, what do we gain by adding this heading to all country articles? There's nothing stopping someone from adding the sub-heading to a specific country article, but putting it in the template means that it's expected to be there. I don't disagree that it might be a nice way to re-organize content if we had lots more country articles to create, but given that every country has an article the question is whether it's worth the effort to retroactively add a sub-heading to all articles. I'm not opposed, but I don't see a need for it either. -- (WT-en) Ryan 19:53, 2 December 2006 (EST)

Appropriate to have sleep section in country page?[edit]

Archived from the Pub:

The reason I ask is that someone has duplicated (part) of the 'sleep' entry I made in the 'Nelson' section into New Zealand. Surely it is inappropriate to have a 'Sleep' section for a whole country (unless it is very tiny or lacking in possibilities to lay one's head)? (WT-en) W. Frank 09:07, 7 March 2007 (EST)

The sleep section for countries and regions is not for individual listings but rather to provide an overview on the accommodation in that particular area. Check out the Japan article to see a good example of what that section should look like. -- (WT-en) Ricardo (Rmx) 09:25, 7 March 2007 (EST)
Thanks for that clarification, Ricardo. I see that there have been quite a few jokers running around on New Zealand since I left my original message. I have just deleted the italicised section of this text:
In New Zealand, armed police are a media event (unlike gangs). Although all police officers are trained to handle firearms, these are normally only openly worn when the situation requires such weapons, such as an armed offender. Traditionally, New Zealand police only carry batons and offender control (pepper) spray. However, first response patrols will generally have recourse to weapons locked away in their vehicle. They don't really hesitate to do this and are known to run along the policy lines of a Dead criminal is better than a talking victim. but bribes should never be offered openly to police officers; this will make your situation worse, not better. In fact, offering a bribe is an excellent way of getting a free tour of a New Zealand prison, court room and police cell, not to mention deportation. But sexual favours are considered the exception to this rule
Hey, Frank, G'Day! Stop being sneaky and sign your posts, you old weasel! When are we going to see you in Omeath again?
(the Grandchildren are off to Singapore, Cebu and Nelson early next month so you could stay in your usual room)
...(WT-en) Gaimhreadhan (kiwiexile at DMOZ) • 12:36, 22 March 2007 (EDT)
I think you should keep your voice down in here, G - you don't know who's listening (grin). Since when did they make you an open directory editor?(WT-en) W. Frank 10:40, 23 March 2007 (EDT)

Moving "Understand" to section 1[edit]

Someone recently moved the Understand section of Russia up above Regions, and while it technically should be reverted, I think it was a genius move... I love Template:Regionlist, but it often seriously conflicts with Template:Quickbar. Sooo, is there any real reason why we shouldn't swap these around? I think Understand makes perfect sense as section 1, editorially and visually. What say, people of the status quo? – (WT-en) cacahuate talk 17:50, 3 November 2007 (EDT)

Just wanted to point out that the problem comes not from a conflict between the quickbar and regionlist templates, it results from the fact that the quickbar takes up all the right-aligned space through the prime map real estate of country articles. But more to the point, I think that this is a good idea, and that the advantages of putting Understand at the top outweigh the advantages of keeping the cities/regions lists as an index at the top. --(WT-en) Peter Talk 03:42, 4 November 2007 (EST)
BUMP! – (WT-en) cacahuate talk 02:34, 6 November 2007 (EST)
I'm kinda "meh" on this. Having empty space up top sucks, but not having a handy list of regions/cities as the very first thing in the article sucks more. (WT-en) Jpatokal 03:22, 6 November 2007 (EST)
To be sure, it would be awful to navigate Russia's regions, for example, if you had to scroll down each time to get to the region and city lists. But this proposal is just for the country template, which someone is only likely to navigate through once while surfing. And people likely have to scroll down now as it is because of the conflict between region maps and the quickbar. I say better an understand section than The Great Satanwhitespace. --(WT-en) Peter Talk 03:54, 6 November 2007 (EST)

I just moved the "Understand" section for Poland, because of the regionlist and quickbar conflict. The quickbar conflict was pushing the region map well below the "Regions" section. Barring any objections, I'll make the change official policy and start plugging away at other country guides. -- (WT-en) Sapphire(Talk) • 07:15, 16 March 2008 (EDT)

Any other thoughts on this? How strongly against it are you Jani? I'd really like to move forward on this if there's no serious objections – (WT-en) cacahuate talk 19:37, 20 June 2008 (EDT)
Alrighty, moving forward with this; I'll go slowly, and give people time to shout – (WT-en) cacahuate talk 22:01, 28 June 2008 (EDT)

The only thing that makes me bit uncomfortable is that it introduces inconsistency between templates: in Cities we have a list of Districts on top of article (and I strongly support that) while in Countries we have Understand go first. However, with enough eyes of us patrolling changes it's better to promote Understand. --(WT-en) DenisYurkin 13:24, 14 July 2008 (EDT)

See section[edit]

Shouldn't there be a "see" section on this template? Is this a mistake? --(WT-en) Peter Talk 23:58, 18 March 2008 (EDT)

And a "do" section—am I missing something here? --(WT-en) Peter Talk 10:43, 27 June 2008 (EDT)
I don't think it's a mistake, but I don't feel that strongly either way... it does almost feel silly to have them on a country page, wouldn't the region, city and other destination sections already cover most of the highlights of a country? The often are filled with random, mostly useless info when they are used... Australia and England for instance – (WT-en) cacahuate talk 11:50, 27 June 2008 (EDT)
Point taken, although by that logic, we should also get rid of country "respect" sections, since that's a time-honored fatuous blather magnet. Also, in the absence of a see section, where should country-wide itineraries go? And I'm still not sure how to answer this question. --(WT-en) Peter Talk 12:49, 27 June 2008 (EDT)
Itineraries can be {{related| }}... or put in "other destinations" maybe... don't know about sports, see or do would make the most sense. Several sections on other templates are optional, as needed, such as Stay healthy, Work, etc... maybe in this case it's one of those. There may be cases where there's substantial and relevant things to say in those sections, and then they should be used... but I personally dislike useless lists like: ski, snowboard, hiking, nature walks.... it's not about listing everything there is to see or do, just notable things, like cricket in India for instance – (WT-en) cacahuate talk 00:42, 28 June 2008 (EDT)
I agree with cacahuate; receational/adventure sports like Skiing/snowboarding/paragliding are different from spectator sports like cricket (in India), football (in Europe), or that weird helmet-bashing thing that they play in America. The latter can fall under Culture as well as Do. That's the problem. How do other guides like Lonely Planet sort this one out? (WT-en) Upamanyuwikivoyage( Talk )( (WT-en) Travel ) • 03:16, 30 June 2008 (EDT)

Project:Article templates says "See" is required. There should be some description here of the types of attractions one might find in the country, along with pointers to the most notable. In the U.S., for instance, we should point out Niagara Falls, the Grand Canyon, the Statue of Liberty, and of course the many itineraries that are already there. See and Do sections are, to me, the meat of our guides; that's where we put the information that tells a traveler why they would want to visit. To leave them blank is like a big flashing sign that says "there's nothing to do here". (WT-en) LtPowers 16:22, 23 May 2009 (EDT)

I also think that they should be added. Does anybody actually oppose this? (WT-en) Jpatokal 06:00, 1 July 2009 (EDT)
Also agree with (WT-en) LtPowers and (WT-en) Jpatokal. Leaving these sections out seems like there is nothing to see or do there, while having them gives us a place to point out the top reasons for visiting a country, which is especially useful for those countries not everyone knows much about. I'd love to click on Ghana or Tajikistan and see what the top sights and activities are, because I have otherwise no idea. (WT-en) Texugo 22:57, 1 September 2009 (EDT)
Yes, I like the idea of having "See" and "Do" in every country. (WT-en) ChubbyWimbus 23:12, 1 September 2009 (EDT)

See and Do[edit]

I have added a "See" and "Do" section to every country article. I have also added it to the template page with a brief description of what belongs there. Please adjust and add to the template description.

Also, please check the country pages of any country you are familiar with and add content to the "See" and "Do" sections. While some countries already had these sections, most did not, so even "guide status" countries, like Japan, now have blank sections! (WT-en) ChubbyWimbus 00:54, 20 September 2009 (EDT)

Exchange Rates Policy?[edit]

Swept in from the Pub:

I think we should adopt a policy to omit exchange rates from country articles with floating currencies. If there is a peg to the USD, or Euro, or if the currency is stable against another currency, then it is worth mentioning. Otherwise, the information is invariably going to be out of date and misleading. Especially in today's economic climate where EUR/USD exchange rates are changing by percentage points intra-day. There is enough stuff to update without doing exchange updates daily. The alternative would be some automated process to import the information where required, but wikivoyage has other strengths, and there are plenty of exchange rate sites.. I know this information is in other printed travel guides, but it is wrong there too.. --(WT-en) Inas 19:24, 22 September 2008 (EDT)

I'd support that – (WT-en) cacahuate talk 19:55, 22 September 2008 (EDT)
I'm not against omitting exchange rates but I do know that it is useful to have some idea of the rate when looking at listings. Often, when I visit a country for the first time, I have no clue, not even a ballpark figure, for what the rate looks like. (That said, sometimes a month can hit the rate right out of the ballpark!) --(WT-en) Wandering 22:41, 22 September 2008 (EDT)
I'd vote with Wandering. My suggestion is to put up the exchange rate in the Quick Facts box at a country level. Given the current financial turmoil, this may not be perfectly accurate - but is more likely to get updated than if the exchange rate is buried deep inside some article - as in the case with the India page --(WT-en) Pradyot
I don't think the exchange rate should be totally dropped, as a ballpark exchange rate, tagged with a date, is useful. That is, the Japan article should say "As of 2008, the yen trades at around 100 to the dollar", not "At 27 seconds past 8:31 AM on October 6th, 2008, the mid-market interbank FX yen rate in New York for quantities below 1 billion was 106.1234566789 to the US dollar". The vast majority of the world's currencies are kinda-sorta stable (that is, the number of zeroes is likely to be the same next year as this year), and for the rest we should note that they aren't.
But I think the best place to put them is where they're right now, namely the Buy section, since that's where the country's currency is discussed.
Otherwise we'll just end up with exchange rates in both. (WT-en) Jpatokal 02:31, 8 October 2008 (EDT)
I rather like seeing the exchange rates. Every traveler knows that they fluctuate and that they should find an official source for the latest figures, but it is handy to have an indication of what to expect in the country article, even if that is out by 15% or so. It might however be a good idea to always date the exchange rates, that way a reader will immediately know how much the quoted figures can be trusted. Obviously, for countries like Zimbabwe quoting figures simply does not make sense and it is sufficient to state that the economy is FUBAR and the traveler should check the exchange rate prior to any transaction. --(WT-en) Nick 09:24, 15 October 2008 (EDT)

Cost of living benchmark?[edit]

Swept in from pub:

One thing I try to research before visiting somewhere is the relative cost of living, ie how much spending money I'm going to need. Has there been any discussion previously on ways of incorporating any sort of easy benchmark of this into articles or as part of the templates? I'd love to be able to see at a glance that in Riga a diet coke is going to cost me 1.5lats and a pizza for lunch 4 lats. For instance. How to do it in a way useful to all is another question. Has this cropped up before? (WT-en) Andyfarrell 19:04, 31 March 2009 (EDT)

He, I'd be all in for swapping either Government or Religion out of the quick boxes in favour of the Big Mac Index, though I wouldn't know what to do with countries without McDonalds'. --(WT-en) Stefan (sertmann) Talk 19:14, 31 March 2009 (EDT)
This is already an objective. See Project:Country_article_template#Costs. How much money you will need, a cost of common items should be included in the Buy section of country articles, including how much a Big Mac costs, if you like. --(WT-en) Inas 19:33, 31 March 2009 (EDT)
I'd like to see both government and religion leave the quickbox (since that information belongs in "understand"), but I do think adding an infobox to each country's "buy" section displaying its big mac index score would be useful. It should be year end data, so it will be simple to update without following every fluctuation. --(WT-en) Peter Talk 20:20, 31 March 2009 (EDT)
Generally, the relative costs of things are found in the Buy section, although only some countries' articles mention such info. You'd need to find an appropriate index. Cost of living indexes and "most expensive for expatriates" include things like taxes, housing, etc. To further complicate things, prices can be drastically different throughout the country. Accommodation may not be uniform...for instance, a 4-5star hotel in an African capital might be comparable to that of a major European/US city, while small hotels and hostels might be drastically cheaper. It also depends on how you travel...W. Europe generally has much higher prices than the US, but for a long-distance trip, there's the Eurail and hostels everywhere...while long distance travel in the US is very expen$ive and cheap hostels are only found in some large cities. A week in Washington (in a hostel & using the subway) can be much cheaper than a week in London...but a week travelling from NYC to LA is probably much more expensive than a week going from London to Paris to Rome. I'm not against doing a price comparison...but there's LOTS of factors which may need to be spelled out to be effective. (WT-en) AHeneen 23:06, 31 March 2009 (EDT)

We did have an article called "What things cost" that was deleted after a very long messy discussion. I argued for keeping it, and rewrote most of it in the process. Put it up for undeletion? Use some of its text (my rewrite was of course brilliant :-) in a new article? (WT-en) Pashley 01:05, 1 April 2009 (EDT)

Could we add something like per capita GDP as a cost indicator in country articles? Could we automate getting the data? There's more than one way to calculate or estimate it, though. Wikipedia has several articles, one here, with links to data sources. (WT-en) Pashley 01:31, 1 April 2009 (EDT)

The main reason we didn't keep that article, though, was that we decided the information belonged firmly in country articles' buy sections (if I remember correctly). Per capita GDP's effects on PPP are very ambiguous and often marginal, especially as PPP is determined by a bunch of additional causes unrelated to per capita income. The big mac index is widely regarded as the most important and accurate measure of varying price levels across nations, so, while imperfect, I think we should limit site-wide information about country PPP to this index, while allowing ourselves greater latitude to go into details in each country's buy section. (E.g., while Japan has exceptionally high food costs that will show up in the big mac index, their high-end electronics are actually quite cheap by international standards.) --(WT-en) Peter Talk 01:40, 1 April 2009 (EDT)
Lets just make the guideline for the Buy section a little more prominent. I'm sure its not difficult to people to include the costs of a few common items in the buy section to give an idea of what things are going to cost, they probably just don't think of it. In the Australia article you will certainly find the cost of a few different styles of meals in the Eat section, what to expect to pay for accommodation in the Sleep section. Its not much good putting the costs of transport in the Get around or Get in sections because they vary so much between locations, but you will find pretty accurate costs in many of the City articles, as well as finer grained costs of accommodation. These are surely the three biggest costs travellers will encounter. I don't really see what is missing there, or what benefit there would be in putting it in a standardised table. I don't know if per capita GDP has any consistent relation to the costs of travel. The USA has a per capita GDP higher than Japan or Australia, but I would say it is cheaper to travel in. The Big Mac index is not a good judge of buying power, it is not officially available for many countries, and it smacks a bit of American cultural imperialism when applied to countries where you have to work a day to buy one. If people want to put the cost of a Big Mac into the Buy or Eat section of a country, where it is relevant to assess the costs of travel there, they are already very free to do so, and this should be encouraged where appropriate. --(WT-en) Inas 01:51, 1 April 2009 (EDT)

One of the many pieces missing from this puzzle is price ranges for the Eat section (and reaching a consensus on Project:Restaurant listings#price ranges what exactly price given for restaurant should reflect: only main dish / average set of meals for this establishment [type] / three-course full meal or something else]]). Anything constructive will be highly appreciated on this. --(WT-en) DenisYurkin 16:43, 1 April 2009 (EDT)

Glad I asked. That's given me some idea of the opinions on this! Thanks particularly to Sertmann for drawing my attention to the Big Mac Index, I like it, but think it's too narrow a measure - it doesn't tell me how much spending money I need to take. It doesn't appear that there is a quick and easy solution to go in an infobox so I guess I will just spend a little time adding to the Costs sections on places I know. (WT-en) Andyfarrell 18:52, 4 April 2009 (EDT)

I'm glad you asked too. I came onto wikivoyage as I'm looking into some voluntourism in Argentina, and would really like to see cost of travel there, but there's nothing in the country listing. I also read the "what things cost" discussion. I personally think it would be very hard to start to create, in a user-generated guide like this, but guidelines on cost could be added under anything that costs. Like, in the template, there are "costs" under "buy" but there could be costs under eat, drink, sleep, contact, but how are you supposed to monitor how people enter the data? Since there's nothing really comparable, as, yes, you could go to McD's, but it's the traditional food that most people want to try when travelling, so you can't compare it properly. I'd like to see something like "Budget" included in the country's page, whereby people could list basic costs for living as averages (Food shopping for week = x-yUSD @Date/Year, Rent for month = x-yUSD) Although I would be looking for this more for slightly more long term forays into places. I mean, if there was a budget section added, there would be no easy way to regulate it, but at least the idea to add it would be there, so those who knew anything about the cost of living in a country, would be able to include a budget for a week of a backpackers holiday, long-term stay in the country, or a more luxurious holiday, like a week in a hotel with B&B & eating out each night, with restaurants/whatever listed as low-end, middle or high end in the prices of the place. Not sure how this could be done, but it's a contribution I suppose! (WT-en) ElectricSocks 00:19, 10 September 2009 (EDT)

I like the idea of benchmark like this:
a budget for a week of a backpackers holiday, long-term stay in the country, or a more luxurious holiday, like a week in a hotel with B&B & eating out each night
I think I could contribute few bits of this for a country or two from my previous visits. No objections if we try this as a subsection of Understand in a respective country's (or city's) article? --(WT-en) DenisYurkin 18:25, 17 September 2009 (EDT)
Does anyone have any feedback, on whether Australia#Costs is a reasonable cost of living benchmark section, or whether it it is useless prose? I'd like to think it is more useful to have a section like this, than a big mac index. --(WT-en) inas 20:11, 30 September 2009 (EDT)
It may be a bit long but I think it's good overall. I'd move it after the "Currency" section, though, since that's where the Australian dollar is introduced. (WT-en) LtPowers 22:26, 30 September 2009 (EDT)
Excellent example, great work! I even think we need a dedicated page listing showcase sections of each kind, where this link should be definitely added. --(WT-en) DenisYurkin 03:58, 1 October 2009 (EDT)

Understand and regions/cities[edit]

What's the deal with the Understand, Regions and Cities subheaders with countries? At some countries Understand is at the top, such as the USA, while at others, such as Finland, Regions is at the top. Now I see in the template that Understand should go at the top, but why is it wrong with so many countries? Is there a kind of history here? --(WT-en) globe-trotter 18:10, 13 January 2010 (EST)

See #Moving "Understand" to section 1 and for more background Template talk:Quickbar#Delete the Quickbar. --(WT-en) Peter Talk 18:17, 13 January 2010 (EST)
Ah thanks, that was what I was looking for. --(WT-en) globe-trotter 18:32, 13 January 2010 (EST)

Per discussion at Template talk:Quickbar#Round three, I have devised a revised and much smaller "quickbar" that will permit us to move the Understand section back to where it is on all other article templates (below Cities/Other Destinations). Please comment there if you have any concerns, and feel free to test the new template before we commit to implementing it site-wide. (WT-en) LtPowers 20:09, 18 August 2011 (EDT)

I think it looks great, and am excited to see the upcoming change. --(WT-en) Peter Talk 23:30, 18 August 2011 (EDT)

How to link to another wiki for Get in -> By car and Get around -> by Car?[edit]

A new community wiki specifically for people traveling across multiple countries with vehicles has been created.

It's called WikiOverland, the encyclopedia of Overland travel and it contains mountains of data for people traveling by vehicle. It's in no way intended to duplicate the enormous amount of travel information here at wikivoyage, but supplement it with the very detailed information needed by travelers with a vehicle.

It currently includes things like customs paperwork and fees, the process at the border, vehicle insurance, up-to-date gasoline prices (in any currency and unit the reader chooses), gasoline frequency and quality, camping, roads, maps, navigation, vehicle maintenance, buying and selling vehicles and much, much more.

WikiOverland has a page for every country, much like wikiTravel, and currently links to wikiTravel for all the travel information here. WikiOverland can then specialize in the detailed information required by those traveling with vehicles.

My question is how should I link to WikiOverland in each country under the two major "by car" sub-sections?

Thanks -(WT-en) Dangrec 18:23, 29 November 2011 (EST)

It looks like an interesting project, and with a compatible licence. Particularly, our routes and itineraries tend to be considerably less developed than our destinations. However, I'm reasonably confident that our current policies don't permit it to be linked to those sections - we don't allow links to other guides. Perhaps Project:Fellow_Traveller_Expedition is a reasonable place for this discussion. --(WT-en) Inas 19:13, 29 November 2011 (EST)
Thanks, I moved the discussion to Talk:List of related projects. It seems like that page doesn't get any attention from moderators. I hope my discussion is noticed. Thanks (WT-en) Dangrec 19:55, 29 November 2011 (EST)
I'm sure it will be noticed, you can put a notice about it in the pub if you like to be sure. However, cooperation with other projects isn't something that has received much focus here, and the emphasis continues to be on getting the best information into this guide. We're also limited in adding interwiki links, since our tech requests rarely get acted upon unless there is some commercial interest to Internet Brands in doing so. Still, viewpoints may vary. --(WT-en) Inas 19:58, 29 November 2011 (EST)
Actually, the license isn't compatible, but that doesn't matter if we just want to link to them. (WT-en) LtPowers 10:32, 30 November 2011 (EST)
We're in talks right now to drop the "non-commercial" from our license. Decision pending. -(WT-en) Dangrec 12:08, 30 November 2011 (EST)
We've dropped the "non-commerical" from the license for WIkiOverland. -(WT-en) Dangrec 00:29, 1 December 2011 (EST)
I appreciate you going to the effort to retrospectively make my comment correct. --(WT-en) Inas 00:48, 1 December 2011 (EST)


Our current advice is to indicate what continent the country is on and list neighboring countries. That flies in the face of what we recommend elsewhere, and particularly for star articles—that the lede is a hook, and is the place for rhetorical flourish, not a list of dry facts. It's always a bit of an embarrassment when various journal/newspaper/blog articles praise our project, but on the other hand juxtapose some terrible, boring article lede with a creative one from, say, Lonely Planet.

Let's change this? --Peter Talk 18:23, 29 December 2012 (UTC)

I agree, the lede should be lively and interesting instead of dry and Wikipedia-like. Globe-trotter (talk) 15:42, 15 July 2013 (UTC)
I have totally rewritten the guidance. --Peter Talk 07:40, 17 July 2013 (UTC)

Moving Regions to top[edit]

Now that we have changed the Quickbar to a smaller size, is it time to move the Regions section to the top and the Understand section down? I thought that was one of the reasons why a smaller Quickbar was wanted. Globe-trotter (talk) 15:42, 15 July 2013 (UTC)

Yes, though I don't think changing the template was a priority because no one's creating country articles right now. =) LtPowers (talk) 18:04, 15 July 2013 (UTC)
Yes, it's time to move the navigation sections to the top (as with all other region articles). I moved the understand section to 1 only because of the issues with the long Quickbar. --Peter Talk 07:36, 17 July 2013 (UTC)
I just did it for Australia and there are some issues with the Quickbar (maybe the same issues as before? I wasn’t there at that time, so I’m not sure). But I think it’s much better to have the Understand section below, so maybe this should be fixed by writing more stuff in the first unnamed section. Fractal (talk) 13:48, 25 July 2013 (UTC)

This is a template[edit]

Contrary to assertions, this is in fact a template, intended for people to copy and paste. That it also contains explanations is irrelevant; complete explanations should go in Wikivoyage:Article templates/Sections. The Cope section should not be included in the template by default, just as it is not included in Template:Country skeleton. Powers (talk) 01:39, 10 February 2014 (UTC)

You'd have to be very silly indeed to copy and paste this explanation of a template, because then you'd need to spend a heck a lot of time removing all the explanatory stuff in each section just to end up with a few section titles. This may have been the (inferior) way that the "article page" was used back when we were actually creating new country articles but nowadays if you want to check the section heading order or standard subsection titles, it's much more efficient to do it differently: copy-and-paste the Wikivoyage:Quick country article template or just add {{subst:country}} to the page and save. --118.93nzp (talk) 01:46, 10 February 2014 (UTC)
I agree with 118 on this. The template is Wikivoyage:Quick country article template. This page explains the template and the sections within it. 118's explanation of how to use the optional "Cope" section does belong here, in my opinion. Ikan Kekek (talk) 02:09, 10 February 2014 (UTC)
As should be obvious from the titles, the Quick template is simply the quick version of this, which is the full template with explanations. The directions on this page even explicitly explain what to do if you copy and paste from this page. That's what "template" means. Powers (talk) 14:24, 10 February 2014 (UTC)
And this is what it says: "This is an informational template that describes the structure to use when creating articles about countries. Editing this template will not create a new article; for information on how to create new articles see Wikivoyage:How to start a new page."
"To quickly insert a complete blank country template, you can copy-and-paste the Wikivoyage:Quick country article template or just add {{subst:country}} to the page and save.
Stuff in italics below is editorial comment, with suggestions for what should go in each section. You should plan on ruthlessly eliminating it if you copy this code to a new country article."
So if you really think people are going to be so stupid as to copy this article and then go about deleting a bunch of editorial comments, rather than copying and pasting the quick country template or using the code shown above, we can put the title of the optional "Cope" section in italics, along with all the editorial comments about it and be done with it, if that would make you happy. However, an "informational template" is not an actual template, and I find your take on this strange. Ikan Kekek (talk) 19:13, 10 February 2014 (UTC)
I find your take that an "informational template" is not a template strange. Powers (talk) 20:49, 10 February 2014 (UTC)
It seems we have a consensus that we all have strange opinions. With regards to the template, since we already have articles for all existing countries, barring the occasional situation like South Sudan this template is for informational-only purposes now, so having an extra informational section doesn't seem to make much difference. Modifying a template that was still used for article creation would be a bigger issue, but that doesn't apply to country and continent templates. -- Ryan • (talk) • 21:09, 10 February 2014 (UTC)
It sets a bad precedent for other templates, and puts this full template out of concordance with the quick version. I don't see why it's important. Powers (talk) 21:44, 10 February 2014 (UTC)
If the concern is just that the quick version will be out of sync then let's make "Cope" an official part of the template. The proposed usage - pointers to consulates, common radio and newspapers, etc - is something that should be needed for the vast majority of country articles, and many (possibly a majority?) of our country articles already include this section. -- Ryan • (talk) • 22:10, 10 February 2014 (UTC)

Section names[edit]

Do you not think that all sections have weird names? --Sonusmarty (talk) 23:46, 9 March 2014 (UTC)Sonusmarty

What do you mean? They all match our standard section headers. Powers (talk) 19:14, 10 March 2014 (UTC)

Talk section[edit]

I've noticed a de-facto standard on starting this section with See also: XXX phrasebook, but I think it could be eliminate considering that in a printed article is a useless statement, and in a webpage could be considered redundat by the same wikilink embedded in the section text (e.g. Italy#Talk). What do you think? --Andyrom75 (talk) 20:14, 8 February 2015 (UTC)

I'm not sure why no-one replied to you in 2015. In Italy#Talk I see both a "See also" and a link. That seems best to me. Ikan Kekek (talk) 08:10, 6 January 2019 (UTC)

Placement of "Talk" section[edit]

The "Talk" section was moved to right after "Understand", based on a discussion at Wikivoyage talk:Region article template#Placement of "Talk" section on why the "Talk" section (optional at the region level) was put in a different place than in the country template, until now. Ikan Kekek (talk) 03:47, 20 March 2015 (UTC)

Lonely Planet style "itineraries"[edit]

Swept in from the pub

So this edit introduced an "itineraries" section that does not look like those are "supposed to look" per policy, but it got me thinking - Lonely Planet guidebooks usually have a list of "itineraries" on their first pages that gives suggestions for routes to take if you have x,y or z amount of time and want to focus on A,B,C type of attractions / cities while focusing on geographical area 1,2,3 or the whole country. We have an equivalent of the "highlights" sections at the beginning of LP guidebooks with our nine top listed cities and the way "see" and "do" are supposed to look in country/region/huge city articles. Is this a stupid idea or a good way to provide a significant portion of our readers exactly what they're looking for (judging by the type of questions we get in the Tourist Office at least)? Or are we ill-equipped to provide something like that because we lack the ability to make subjective judgment "stick" the way a guidebook with a fixed number of writers and a boss/editorial board who can issue Roma locuta causa finita type statements (which we can't, never will and should never even attempt). Hobbitschuster (talk) 20:08, 23 February 2017 (UTC)

It could be done, but they do seem awfully subjective. Powers (talk) 02:35, 25 February 2017 (UTC)
These things could be chosen by consensus of participants on destination article talk pages where they might be controversial. Siena is one case in which the main sights are really obvious and unlikely to be very controversial, so I simply plunged forward and organized Siena#See in a user-friendly way. Ikan Kekek (talk) 06:48, 27 February 2017 (UTC)

Country history sections[edit]

Swept in from the pub

So the issue has come up again on Talk:Germany how detailed should history sections be? And should we be a bit more explicit on the subject in policy than we currently are? Hobbitschuster (talk) 17:11, 30 May 2017 (UTC)

I just signed up yesterday to work on the Port Isabel article (partly because of the inadequate "History" section) and I have the same question. My community relies on tourism and attempts to leverage its history as one of its amenities to draw visitors from other nearby tourism destinations. It seems enough of a challenge in Wikipedia to provide balance in depth of "history" in a place article, and much more so for Wikivoyage. What is done in Wikipedia when this comes up is to create a new article specific to history, then provide a brief summery and direct the reader to the history page for detail. I don't see having a special page on history as being acceptable for Wikivoyage, but I am new here. To me, it seems the solution is to create the suggested "history of (place)" article in Wikipedia, then link to it in a summery in "history" in the Wikivoyage (Place). I don't see a lot of links in Wikivoyage to Wikipedia articles. Is that discouraged? Thanks ShoreCrab2000 (talk) 23:15, 31 May 2017 (UTC)
The governing guidelines are at Wikivoyage:Links to Wikipedia. We don't normally use inline links to Wikipedia articles, but we always add a link to the analogous Wikipedia article, if any, (e.g., w:Boston in the Boston article), so that it appears on the panel on the left side.
To give a quick answer to the larger question, I think that the thing to keep in mind about "History" sections on Wikivoyage is that they are geared toward travelers. So the thing we probably should be thinking is "What background would you want a visitor to know?" The way I look at it is that we're not being exhaustive, but a general overview with interesting highlights is great. And then if people want more detail, they can look at the Wikipedia article, which we hope has that detail. Ikan Kekek (talk) 23:37, 31 May 2017 (UTC)D

Moving the "Understand" section up[edit]

A lot of our country articles have the code <br clear="right" />, which sometimes prevents some awkward layout with maps but also creates a big white space that I think is an eyesore. I discussed this with Ypsilon, who said that the space can be filled with lede text. But in a more recent discussion at Talk:Georgia (country)#Lede, Ceever argued for excluding some content from the lede and Ikan Kekek argued for keeping the lede to only one paragraph. Regardless of your views on how long the lede should be, the fact is that many countries have short ledes, so the white space remains.

I want to suggest solving the problem by moving the "Understand" section above the "Regions" section, as has already been done in some countries such as Chile. This would also partially address the problem of some countries' ledes being so short and bland, because the reader could immediately continue to the "Understand" section after the lede. Thoughts? (Also pinging ThunderingTyphoons!.) —Granger (talk · contribs) 00:09, 24 June 2018 (UTC)

"Understand" is a continuation of the descriptive information which starts in the lede, so it would make sense to keep them together. K7L (talk) 00:21, 24 June 2018 (UTC)
Do you propose this just for countries, or also for regions with subregions and huge cities? ThunderingTyphoons! (talk) 18:53, 24 June 2018 (UTC)
Just for countries. The other articles don't have Template:Quickbar at the top, so this formatting problem doesn't usually happen with them. —Granger (talk · contribs) 23:32, 24 June 2018 (UTC)
I strongly support moving up the Understand section, also for huge cities and regions. It's weird to have districts or regions as a beef between the hamburger breads between the lead and the Understand sections. ϒpsilon (talk) 04:42, 25 June 2018 (UTC)
Agree the white space at the top of some countries does not look good. However moving all the Understand section above the region section I am also not enthusiastic about. It works for Chile but some countries like USA, UK and Germany which have large history, economic and political sections it would not. I do not want to scroll past all of that text to see the regions and major cities. Adding, or moving, enough to the lead so it goes to end of Quickbar would be the best solution. Alternatively rethink the quickbar display. --Traveler100 (talk) 05:01, 25 June 2018 (UTC)
For the record I've intentionally added the code (which unfortunately sometimes produces that whitespace) to country articles. The reason is that the quickbar otherwise pushes down the map of the regions, so that it becomes detached from the region list (in the worst case there were even a picture or two stuffed in after the quickbar which meant that the region map was literally halfway down the article). ϒpsilon (talk) 06:18, 25 June 2018 (UTC)
Traveler100, I understand your reservations, but I'm not sure expanding the lead is a feasible solution. It's hard to write a good two or three paragraph lead, so a lot of country articles still have a short one, and I think that's likely to continue for the foreseeable future, especially because when people do try to expand leads, they sometimes face opposition, as at Talk:Georgia (country). —Granger (talk · contribs) 01:11, 26 June 2018 (UTC)
Can we be flexible on this? The clear code appears to be needed to stop issues with maps moving, moving all the understand of large articles is too much but for other articles the lead is too small. Allow position of understand section to be in either position depending on relative sizes. Alternatively add left justify images or even we rethink having the quickbar. --Traveler100 (talk) 05:14, 26 June 2018 (UTC)

I'm not sure how I feel about this proposal, but another option would surely be to move the quickbar down to 'Understand'. ThunderingTyphoons! (talk) 09:20, 26 June 2018 (UTC)

Moving the quickbar down to Understand I think is a good solution. --Traveler100 (talk) 17:14, 26 June 2018 (UTC)
I agree. —Granger (talk · contribs) 00:34, 27 June 2018 (UTC)
Does anyone object to moving the quickbar to "Understand"? If not, I'll try to get started on that sometime in the next few days. —Granger (talk · contribs) 10:47, 1 July 2018 (UTC)
Since this is a significant change to all of our country articles, and only five of us have given views (and only three on moving the quickbar), let's put a request for comment in before acting. It's possible few people have seen this. ThunderingTyphoons! (talk) 11:18, 1 July 2018 (UTC)
Request made. Give it 48 hours or so, then if there are no major objections we can justifiably proceed. --ThunderingTyphoons! (talk) 11:23, 1 July 2018 (UTC)
I'm OK with moving the quickbar, but I'd also like to bring up another solution. In the Spanish Wikivoyage, they use horizontal quickbars that also include the lead section and some other practical stuff (example) and as it is horizontal nothing is pushed down. It doesn't have as much details as our current quickbars (electricity, driving side etc. are missing), but I guess those parameters could be easily added. What do you say, is this something we could adopt? ϒpsilon (talk) 11:46, 1 July 2018 (UTC)
That's an interesting idea. I think something like that would look good for articles with short leads, though I wonder if it would look awkward for articles with longer leads like France and Colombia. —Granger (talk · contribs) 03:29, 3 July 2018 (UTC)
I also fear it wouldn't accommodate longer ledes particularly well. Is it possible to run a demo version with a longer country lede? ThunderingTyphoons! (talk) 10:52, 3 July 2018 (UTC)
I have made a very crude Spanglish mockup for the UK (and its long lede) on my Spanish user page. Obviously all the links don't work, but it gives an impression of how ϒpsilon's proposal would look. It's not terrible, but I would argue it's inferior to what we currently have. What do you think? ThunderingTyphoons! (talk) 11:01, 3 July 2018 (UTC)
We could of course also keep the lead section as normal text like it's now and only use the central section "Spanish" quickbar for quick facts. In that way there'd be room for additional parameters.
If you want to know what it'd look like, go to TT's Spanish userpage, delete the content in the intro parameter and click Show preview (Mostrar previsualización). --ϒpsilon (talk) 15:20, 3 July 2018 (UTC)
That might be better. We could choose whether to slot it in between the lede and the banner or right after the lede, and just before 'Understand'. ThunderingTyphoons! (talk) 12:23, 4 July 2018 (UTC)
I think right below the banner is better.
Also, if I understand it correctly, our current quickbar template gets its information (and is updated) directly from Wikidata. This is IMO something that should be implemented into the new version of the quickbar.
Yet another suggestion, we could replace the photo in the Spanish quickbar with the flag of the country. ϒpsilon (talk) 18:30, 6 July 2018 (UTC)
Sorry but I do not like the look and layout of the alternative solution. Probably could improve on the colours and style but in the end I think it is making the page look more like a fact book and not a travel guide. Prefer the proposal to move the existing style down to the Understand section. --Traveler100 (talk) 18:33, 6 July 2018 (UTC)

It's been a couple of weeks, and there doesn't seem to be strong support for the Spanish Wikivoyage-style idea. It looks to me like the general consensus here is to move the quickbar down to "Understand". —Granger (talk · contribs) 05:50, 17 July 2018 (UTC)

Accordingly, I'll start moving the quickbars. —Granger (talk · contribs) 02:18, 3 August 2018 (UTC)
Granger: the new position of the quickbars looks good with the exception of one thing: in the Republic of the Congo article, there is a picture in the "Other destinations" sections above the quickbar. This means that the quickbar loses its prominence in the article — it makes much more sense that the quickbar comes before any images, with the exception of the map, since it should stand to readers. Selfie City (talk) 01:15, 4 August 2018 (UTC)
I don't think I agree. If anything, it might be better to have an image appear in the article before the quickbar. Better to start with something that grabs the reader's attention and illustrates the appeal of the destination, before going to the dry list of important but not-that-interesting facts in the quickbar. —Granger (talk · contribs) 14:10, 4 August 2018 (UTC)
Thanks everyone for finishing this discussion in my absence, and special thanks to Granger for moving so many quickbars. If there are any left to move, please let me know and I'll do them. ThunderingTyphoons! (talk) 16:52, 7 August 2018 (UTC)
I just finished moving them yesterday! :) —Granger (talk · contribs) 01:24, 8 August 2018 (UTC)

Flags and coat of arms[edit]

Swept in from the pub

Is it okay if we can add flags and coat of arms to articles? SpinnerLaserz (talk) 20:36, 15 August 2019 (UTC)

I'd say 'no'. This isn't Wikipedia. Flags and coats of arms may be interesting, but are not important to travellers. In most countries, the observant traveller will figure out what the flag is pretty quickly. The coat of arms is just trivia. Ground Zero (talk) 21:18, 15 August 2019 (UTC)
Depending on the individual situation, it could be a matter for 'Respect'. We all know examples, and don't need to go there now, but there are certainly some cases when a traveller knowing the meaning and use of a particular flag can help grease the wheels in certain places.--ThunderingTyphoons! (talk) 21:31, 15 August 2019 (UTC)
By the way, French Wikivoyage has the practice of using flags/COAs alongside the article's name, as part of the pagebanner. I quite like the look, though wouldn't advocate us copying.--ThunderingTyphoons! (talk) 21:35, 15 August 2019 (UTC)
Could this be a travel topic? --Comment by Selfie City (talk | contributions) 21:49, 15 August 2019 (UTC)
"There are also some cases when a traveller knowing the meaning and use of a particular flag can help grease the wheels in certain places" -- I don't know know what those cases would be. There would also be cases where knowing a country's national anthem/flower/sport/head of state would be useful, but if we include everything that may be possibly of use or interest, we end up with too much information, and not enough focus on travel information. We don't even include the national language(s) in the infobox, which is far, far, far more useful information than the flag. Why are we talking about adding flags before talking about adding languages? Because a small group of people love flags, that's why. I'm one of them, but I don't want to inflict my geeky hobby on Wikivoyage. Let's focus on what travellers need instead of adding cruft to our country-level articles which are often long and unwieldy. Ground Zero (talk) 22:01, 15 August 2019 (UTC)
Well, I didn't want to get into examples, but since you've asked (well not really, but...): when and where is the Confederate flag "appropriate"? How may a traveller behave around people waving the neutral Catalan flag or the pro-independence one? What do the uses of the Union Flag, the Tricolour, or the Red Hand mean in Ulster? (I do not want answers to these questions or a discussion of the issues raised here - they are just examples). As I wrote, they could be a matter for 'Respect' in certain cases, i.e. where a traveller could put their foot in it by being ignorant. In those few cases, it would be useful to have an image or description of the flag in question.
Please re-read the thread. Nobody has proposed adding flags to every country article's infobox at the expense of flowers or languages, nobody has even specifically asked to focus on country articles over region / city pages.--ThunderingTyphoons! (talk) 22:19, 15 August 2019 (UTC)
Fair enough. I read that into the discussion because the original question provided no specifics. I can see there being a reason to include a flag where it is an issue of staying safe,, such as your examples, but not as a general practice for countries, regions, cities. The matter should be handled on a case-by-case basis, not as a general discussion. Ground Zero (talk) 22:45, 15 August 2019 (UTC)
I can agree with that.--ThunderingTyphoons! (talk) 22:48, 15 August 2019 (UTC)
When you arrive in a country you may start to see the flag on signs, sometimes starting with the signs directing people to different immigration queues. Technically it is only the traveller's own home country flag that he needs to recognise, but I see no harm in introducing the flag in country articles. However as flags are used for political purposes, we should only do this on country articles, and only where the official recognition of the flag is clear. Flags for cities and other regions have more chance of being controversial, and so I don't think we should show these. AlasdairW (talk) 23:03, 15 August 2019 (UTC)
Flags that are culturally significant should be mentioned. A US history article should explain the Flag; otherwise, waste of time, unless it is a respect issue. --Comment by Selfie City (talk | contributions) 00:47, 16 August 2019 (UTC)
(edit conflict) I agree with Ground Zero. In the vast majority of cases a traveler doesn't need to recognize flags (except one's home country flag or maybe the flag of a protecting power), and I foresee this starting unnecessary debates about countries with limited recognition and subnational regions that we treat as countries. When there is a specific issue that travelers should be aware of, it can be discussed on a case-by-case basis, as is already done at United States of America#Respect. —Granger (talk · contribs) 00:54, 16 August 2019 (UTC)
I also agree with Ground Zero. Ikan Kekek (talk) 04:24, 16 August 2019 (UTC)
We actually used to have flags and coats of arms in the pagebanners, just like French Wikivoyage still does. I don't remember where the discussion was to remove them but I'd would rather have kept them and would certainly not object to reinstating coats of arms or at least flags for countries. The flag is the first thing you see when arriving into a foreign country (or for an island or entity with a strong local identity, the local flag), so I can't understand why they need to be censored from our articles. Ypsilon (talk) 04:47, 16 August 2019 (UTC)
Should we have debates about which flag to use for Kashmir? Do we use the flag for Transnistria? Ikan Kekek (talk) 05:10, 16 August 2019 (UTC)
We don't need to have a flag for all articles, though, for example there is no flag that could represent Central Europe. So if there is a flag that could represent the whole Kashmir region (flown both in India and Pakistan as of the present day), it could be used in the Kashmir article, otherwise not. Our articles for the Indian and Pakistani parts of Kashmir would of course have their own flags if such flags exist (e.g. this one for Azad Kashmir, just as in its Wikipedia article).
The Transnistrian government has defacto control of the area called Transnistria, regardless that no UN member has recognized it as a country. We correctly state that in the article, which is breadcrumbed directly under the Balkans instead Moldova. So I find it logical to use their flag in the Transnistria article. Ypsilon (talk) 08:04, 16 August 2019 (UTC)
I agree that we should go on a case-by-case basis if we want to add flags. Not every article has to have all the same features. --Comment by Selfie City (talk | contributions) 14:21, 17 August 2019 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────If you ask me, I don't mind having flags in the country articles, but it should not be in the sub-national articles, with a few exceptions such as Hong Kong and Puerto Rico. However, the question this raises is what do we do with disputed areas? That is a hole we probably do not want to go down into since it will probably result in heated and travel-irrelevant political debates. The dog2 (talk) 02:22, 18 August 2019 (UTC)

Agreed. --Comment by Selfie City (talk | contributions) 13:14, 18 August 2019 (UTC)
I oppose including flags in any article, for this reason. It's enough to have a global policy of recognizing all reasonably stable de facto independent countries as simply countries. Including their flags provides another level of recognition totally unnecessary in a travel guide. Ikan Kekek (talk) 03:54, 19 August 2019 (UTC)
I agree to have flags but only in the infobox on the country level. OhanaUnitedTalk page 19:45, 17 September 2019 (UTC)
  • I think it is a bad idea. While country only sounds ok, the definition of country itself is unclear. Kosovo? Somaliland? Far better to leave those arguments on wikipedia where the belong. --RegentsPark (talk) 20:22, 17 September 2019 (UTC)

Go next[edit]

The Go next heading isn't in the standard country article template, but there are many country articles and at least one region that have it. Now I've always understood Go next is for places relatively nearby. Secondly, country articles should mostly be about things that apply in the country as a whole.

So for small countries like Monaco, Barbados or Nauru having a Go next section does make sense, but I think not for countries like Canada, Mexico, Germany or Thailand. Yes, it's true that for instance the United States can be a possible destination to go next if you're in Vancouver or Toronto. But if you happen to start in St. John's, let alone in Alert you will have to travel quite a distance before arriving anywhere in the USA. Ypsilon (talk) 16:44, 25 July 2020 (UTC)

I thought this was merely a comment until I saw this in Requests for comment. I think any template has room for optional sections that are standard in any other template, on a ttcf basis. I generally agree with your guidelines. I'm not implacably opposed to a "Go next" section for Thailand, but its 513,120 km sq are bigger than California's 423,970, and California is quite a large state, but it does have a "Go next" section that may be useful. I could well imagine recommending someone go next to Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar, etc. As for Germany, it has and is internationally connected to an excellent high-speed rail network, so it's entirely reasonable to have a "Go next" section in the Germany article, and by the way, Germany has an area of 357,021 km sq. But basically, my feeling is, if it's helpful, have the section, and if not, don't, with a slight bias toward not deleting the section if it's already there, depending on the overall length of the article as well as how useful the section is. Ikan Kekek (talk) 09:45, 26 July 2020 (UTC)
Wikivoyage:Article skeleton templates/Sections#Go next says "Optional but strongly recommended for Region and City articles." Should we add "Optional for other articles."? --LPfi (talk) 10:50, 26 July 2020 (UTC)
I agree with making it optional for all articles. Each country will have a slightly different situation as to whether 'Go next' is appropriate or not, based on its size, borders and infrastructure.
Slightly tangentially, I really don't think it makes sense for Germany, not just because of its size (from e.g. Berlin, you might go on to western Poland, but probably not directly to France or Switzerland), but also because if you listed all its bordering countries and all the countries connected by ferry, the section would just be a long list of other European countries, some of which are the same size as a German state, and some of which are bigger than the whole of Germany.--ThunderingTyphoons! (talk) 11:40, 26 July 2020 (UTC)
Exactly my point. It's useful for countries where, no matter where you are in that country, can fairly quickly get to any of the places listed in Go next. --Ypsilon (talk) 11:55, 26 July 2020 (UTC)
It can also be useful where interesting options are limited enough. This is a good place to describe neighbouring countries or regions, or nearby cities, with one-liners, even when they are reachable only from some regions. I'd keep the list much shorter than the 7+2 --LPfi (talk) 12:14, 26 July 2020 (UTC)
To go back to the tangent for a second, is Germany#Go next a long list or a brief summary? It's not a long list, surely. If anyone thinks it's so useless that it should be eliminated, start a discussion at Talk:Germany, but I think as an American, my perspective is different from some Europeans' perspectives, because even the largest European country west of the former Soviet Union - France - is about the same size (actually a bit smaller, though with different dimensions and much better trains) as Texas. Ikan Kekek (talk) 11:06, 27 July 2020 (UTC)
I agree that the section as written in that article is useful. Probably it could be useful in any country article, but I still think it should be optional, as we then perhaps avoid somebody writing it without having a good touch on what to mention or how to write it. --LPfi (talk) 12:09, 27 July 2020 (UTC)
Absolutely optional. I don't think anyone wants to make it a required section at the country level. Ikan Kekek (talk) 20:04, 27 July 2020 (UTC)
I support making it optional, without any recommendation. Ground Zero (talk) 13:03, 29 July 2020 (UTC)
Taking ttcf to the extreme, perhaps a rule of thumb could be used here: if a country (or other destination) could and commonly is used as a means to access another place, a "go next" section is appropriate. If it's the norm for people visiting the place to visit only that individual destination, a go next section is unnecessary.
In the case of California, I'm ambivalent about the go next section. I like these sections of the article because they provide useful travel information, but at the same time if a traveler is visiting the neighboring states Arizona, Nevada, and Oregon, each of those cities has a city (including an airport) that makes traveling via California unnecessary. This is particularly true of Arizona with its Phoenix Airport and Nevada with its Las Vegas Airport, but even Oregon has an airport, in this case at Portland (although my understanding is that it's smaller than the other two airports).
I'm not sure why a large country would need a go next section. Countries such as France, Germany, Spain, and Italy are entirely tourist destinations in their own right, and if a go next section for a state is controversial, go next sections for these countries certainly should be. I don't have any statistics to support this claim, but tourists who visit France, for example, surely wouldn't visit the country on their way to another country? --Comment by Selfie City (talk | contributions) 13:12, 29 July 2020 (UTC)
I would visit France on my way to Spain or Andorra. The latter would be a destination I might not have thought of, and might be thankful of being reminded of, but probably only if I were in an adjacent region. Spain would be too obvious to be useful, but the Basque Country might not. The mentioned countries are such that Go next is nothing to be recommended for them generally, but if somebody writes a good one, such as the one for Germany, all the better. --LPfi (talk) 13:24, 29 July 2020 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── I agree with LPfi and with the emerging consensus to make the section optional in country articles. In medium-sized countries like Germany or France, "Go next" can still be useful for planning a long multi-destination trip. —Granger (talk · contribs) 15:27, 29 July 2020 (UTC)

Optional maybe, but not mandatory. For most visitors Spain would be relevant as a go next for southwestern France but not so for the rest of France, Germany for northeastern France and so on. (Of course the Schengen agreement and good transport systems makes visiting another country in Europe requires less effort and planning ahead than in many other parts of the world.) Ypsilon (talk) 16:40, 29 July 2020 (UTC)