Xenophobia is the fear, hatred, or revulsion felt by a person towards another group, culture, or people. Xenophobia is the opposite of xenophilia.
In short, it is the hatred of strangers.
The word xenophobia has also come to mean, in science fiction novels and the like, a human fear or hatred for alien lifeforms or robots, but this is the less-relevant definition for us travelers.
Xenophobia as a word originates from two Greek words:
“Xen-” comes from Greek xénos, which as an adjective means foreign or strange; as a noun, it means a foreigner or a stranger.
“-phobia” comes from Greek phobos, which means fear. It is common to use it as a standalone word these days, as well.
Also, though this isn’t travel-related, I can’t help but share with you how great my SEO checker by SEMrush is:
See that? My SEO checker tells me that to help this page rank better for the term “xenophobia,” I should add one semantically-related term: Donald Trump 🙂
How great is that!?!
(Not great at all, really, thanks to all the xenophobia and nationalism going on in the world today, but it does provide a momentary instance of amusement, no?)
If you liked topics such as xenophobia and racism, check out our post on the difference between race and ethnicity.