Would you keep a cell phone or a wallet if you happened to find one? Or would you hand it in at the police station? These are the questions the Readers Digest magazine asked. A survey did not seem to be the right way to find out — mostly, people would not admit that they would actually keep the phone anyway. That is why the journalists decided to make an experiment. They chose some of the world’s cities and capitals and “lost” 30 cell phones in each of them. Then they checked the nearest police stations and waited for a call from the finder. According to the number of cell phones they got back in the end, they put together a list of world’s top ten honest cities. TOURISM-REVIEW.COM introduces the winners.
1. Ljubljana, Slovenia
The capital of Slovenia was definitely a very surprising winner of the test. The inhabitants of the Eastern Europe are generally not considered to be the models of honesty and uprightness. Here the Slovenians proved this prejudice to be a bit out of date! In Ljubljana, 29 out of 30 lost cell phones returned to their owner and only one changed its possessor definitely, which is simply amazing.
2. Toronto, Canada
The largest city of Canada can also be proud of its inhabitants. Only two cell phones got completely lost here, 28 were returned. This rank is nevertheless not in the slightest as surprising as the victory of Ljubljana — Canada has for many years occupied top ranks in the surveys of life quality and contentedness of population. Why would the happy satisfied Canadians steal other people’s cell phones?
3. Seoul, South Korea
As for newest technologies and so-called “toys for big boys”, South Korea is one of the world’s leading countries. What we Europeans consider modern technology is “from the past” for Koreans. It is thus no wonder that only 3 people wanted to keep the cell phone they found — and it would not be much of a surprise if these three people were tourists.
4. Stockholm, Sweden
The first north European city on the list, Stockholm ranked fourth. This is a bit of a disappointment actually for the countries of northern Europe are said to have one of the lowest criminality rates in the world — a story says that a guy left his wallet on the bus stop and found it on the same spot two dates later, with all the money and cards in it. On the other hand, Reykjavik or Oslo did not even manage to get into the top 10 — so congratulations, Stockholm. Only four phones could not be traced!
5. Mumbai, India
The second Asian city in the ranking, Mumbai has nothing to be ashamed of. Considering the living standards and comparing them to those of e.g. the above mentioned Stockholm, it is quite surprising that this city ranked among the top 5. Obviously, the poverty does not make one less honorable. Only six phones lost.
5. Manila, The Philippines
Another Asian surprise! The capital and second most populated city of Philippines shares the fifth rank in this “honesty contest” with Mumbai and New York and beat such rivals as e.g. Helsinki. 24 out of 30 citizens returned the cell phone they found to its owner and thus supported the good image of their city and country.
5. New York, USA
Fifth position is not a bad one for New York — considering the number of inhabitants and tourists, plus the absolute anonymity one has in the Big Apple, it is actually amazing that four fifths of this enormous variety of people, no matter what their nationality or religion, are honest and trustworthy.
6. Helsinki, Finland
Sharing the eighth position with the two eastern European capitals, Helsinki is the second and the last representative of Northern Europe. This proves that the post-communist countries are treading on the heels of their partners from the Western Europe, which is definitely a good thing to do.
6. Budapest, Hungary
The success of Eastern Europe in this little contest is marked not only by Ljubljana being the winner, but also other two capitals in the top ten. Budapest, the capital of Hungary and a popular destination for tourists from near and far, boasts of the eighth position.
6. Warsaw, Poland
Even though there are many jokes about Poland and the Poles, especially as to their strong religiosity, jaggedness and greed, the capital of Poland made it to the top ten. It is a shame for Prague, which is still very popular with the tourists, to have ranked far behind the top ten.