Learn some of the local language!
Not a vast amount and I don’t mean you should be fluent; far from it! Here are the best sentences or phrases that by learning before you set off on your travels will improve your journey immensely.
‘No thank you.’
‘Where is ____?’
Counting from 1-10
To test the theory, whilst in India I wore sunglasses and had my dark hair on show and ordered two train tickets to Trivandrum. The cashier charged me local rate which is approximately 5% of the tourist fare. Also, when local sales people start swarming around you trying to sell you holiday tat, a simple ‘No thank you’ in their language will earn you a little respect and they are a little more likely to leave you alone.
It’s also advisable in certain countries to dress appropriately. For example in Pakistan, a female tourist is expected to wear a Hijab (headscarf) and in parts of the Middle East you must cover up. This will stop you looking like a cliche target tourist.