11 Things Contestants on The Amazing Race Should Remember

11 things you may want to remember if you are a contestant on The Amazing Race.
11 things you may want to remember if you are a contestant on The Amazing Race. | Source

The Amazing Race on CBS has been a staple of reality television since 2001. It's an entertaining show that highlights pairs of contestants racing around the world to win $1,000,000. They perform various tasks, and each week one team wins and the last team to check in usually gets eliminated.

It's roaring fun and one of the best shows on television.

Watching the race in our house is a family affair, and we haven't missed an episode in years. We usually tape it and watch it together, commenting on things that annoy us, or dreaming of visiting the beautiful locations.

One thing that we notice every season is how many teams make the same mistakes over and over again. Of course, everything we see is highly edited, but there are some things that have become blatantly obvious over the years.

So, for all of you wannabe contestants, play the game the way you want to play it, but here are 11 things you might want to keep in mind.

Watch "The Amazing Race" from the beginning

1. Read and Reread Your Clues Carefully

How many times have contestants taken a taxi when they shouldn't have, or forgotten to take something with them, only to be penalized?

I can only imagine how crazy it gets behind the scenes, but take the time to read and reread your clues.

2. Learn How to Drive a Stick Shift (Manual) Car

They don't sell as many stick shift cars anymore, but if you plan on being a contestant on The Amazing Race, it's worth it to borrow a friend's car and learn the basics.

A lot of time has been wasted grinding gears and panicking because of a stick shift car.

Just curious...

Have you ever seen The Amazing Race?

  • Yes - I love it and I've never missed an episode
  • Yes - and it was ok
  • Yes - but I didn't enjoy it
  • No - but I think I will now
  • No - I don't watch television
  • No - I can't stand reality TV
See results without voting

3. Learn How to Swim

Inevitably there will be a challenge that requires swimming, so it's best to master that skill.

I don't know how much time the contestants have between the time that they are chosen and the time that the race starts, but a couple of swim classes are a good investment for non-swimmers.

4. Don't Make Alliances With Other Teams

It drives me crazy to see teams pair up with other teams and make promises that they probably won't keep.

Do you honestly think that another team is going to give up their place just to help you out? It has happened, but it usually ends up hurting teams in the long run.

5. Don't Have Your Taxi Follow Another Team's Taxi

There have been a number of times when a taxi driver doesn't know where he is going, and if your team has decided to follow one of those lost drivers, then you are in trouble.

Figure out where you need to go yourself. It's better in the long run.

Can't be a contestant? Try playing the game at home!

6. Be Aware of Various Cultures

I am always amazed at how many contestants hug or kiss the people they get the clues from. Contestants even hug and kiss people on the street that help them out.

I'm also surprised at the outfits that some of the contestants wear. While the ladies look good in their short shorts and skin-tight spaghetti strap tank tops, they look completely out of place and inappropriate in some of the countries they are in.

I am guessing that the producers brief contestants on the cultural mores of the various countries they visit, but I don't know. Just try to use a little common sense.

7. Remember That You Are Being Filmed

As I've said before, I can only imagine how chaotic it must be on this show. Contestants are traveling from country to country, going through different time zones, and all under an incredible amount of stress.

Even knowing this, some of the things that teammates have said and done to each other are horrible, and they are immortalized forever on camera.

Contestants have also said some tactless things about the countries they are visiting.

Even though I can't imagine forgetting that the camera is around, keep it in mind when you are lambasting your teammate or criticizing an entire population.

8. Make Sure You Are in Good Shape

You don't have to be an Olympic superstar, but you definitely need some stamina and good physical strength. There are many tough physical challenges and if you aren't in shape, you probably won't last long in the race.

Did you know...
The series began in 2001 and is currently airing Season 24
The show has 12 international versions
Phil Keoghan is the host
The series is aired on CBS
One season is filmed over approximately 25 days

9. Try to Leave Your Fears at Home

This is a really tough one, I know.

Practice going up on high buildings or eating gross foods.

It might be worthwhile to find a place to bungee jump or go visit a really tall building and get used to it.

Try eating foods you really can't stand. It can't hurt to practice before you go.

10. Stop Speaking With a Fake Accent

OK—this is just a pet peeve of mine, but every season there are contestants who speak to the locals with some weird accent that just magically appears. I guess they are trying to sound like the locals, but it comes across as silly and insulting.

It also doesn't help to yell at people in English. If they don't speak English, then yelling at them in English isn't going to make much of a difference.

11. Take Notes if You Are Allowed to

While I understand there is no way to know what the final challenge will be, have a little notebook and jot down facts about the places you travel to.

I can't imagine a much worse outcome than losing the game in the last round because you can't remember where you've been.

Now Go Out and Win That Million Dollars!

It's really easy for me to give advice sitting in front of a computer screen, and while I don't know what happens behind the scenes, as a devout fan of the show it's clear to me that some teams need to remember some of the tips listed here.

So try to keep them in mind, follow the rules, run the race you want to, and good luck if you are on the next season of The Amazing Race!

© 2014 Glimmer Twin Fan


Nadine May profile image

Nadine May 2 years ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

I loved your hub on The Amazing Race. We watch every episodes and I totally agree with all your points that you mention. We often say, Gosh I wish we could take part, but we are not living in the USA and we are probably far to old!

tillsontitan profile image

tillsontitan 2 years ago from New York

I love your take on the show and your observations. I've seen it a few times but I'm not a big fan, however your advice sounds spot on to me.

Voted up, useful, and interesting.

billybuc profile image

billybuc 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

I rarely watch television but I actually have seen this show once or twice. I found it entertaining and I was also quite happy that Bev and I were not participating. LOL

Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

Glimmer Twin Fan 2 years ago Author

Hi Nadine - Thanks for reading and commenting. My husband and I would love to go on the show, but are not in great shape so we would probably end up losing in the first round. I also hate heights. Oh well, it's great fun to watch.

Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

Glimmer Twin Fan 2 years ago Author

Hi tillsontitan - Thanks for stopping by. This is one of the few reality tv shows I watch (or at least I'll admit to watching). Glad you enjoyed the hub.

Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

Glimmer Twin Fan 2 years ago Author

Bill - Thanks for reading and I bet you and Bev would be awesome on the show. A million bucks isn't too shabby to win either. We just love seeing the places they go to and my daughter really loves it too. Have a great day. Took some time away from HP, but trying to get back in the swing of things again.

VVanNess profile image

VVanNess 2 years ago from Prescott Valley

This is such a creative article! I've always wondered what it would be like to be on that show!

FlourishAnyway profile image

FlourishAnyway 2 years ago from USA

Great points of advice, and that video has me still laughing. I'm not sure which "best moment" I liked the best. The comeback about nearly drowning was pretty good, the watermelon bopping that woman in the face, the runaway cheese, or the little person with a big load to carry ... all were comical.

Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

Glimmer Twin Fan 2 years ago Author

Thanks VVanNess - I have always wondered what it would be like too. My problem would be that I would want to see more of the places we were visiting and I'm guessing the contestants don't get much time at all to do that.

Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

Glimmer Twin Fan 2 years ago Author

That video is funny to me too FlourishAnyway. We watched the episode where that poor girl was crunched in the face with the watermelon. It really looked like it hurt! Thanks for stopping by and reading.

Jackie Lynnley profile image

Jackie Lynnley 2 years ago from The Beautiful South

LOved the video but haven't seen the show, sounds like it would be worth catching up on. Thanks for sharing the info!

tirelesstraveler profile image

tirelesstraveler 2 years ago from California

This was such a fun hub to read.

You need to try it! Apply to be on the show. You can do it.

Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

Glimmer Twin Fan 2 years ago Author

Thanks Jackie - It really is a fun show and I'm comfortable watching it with our 11 year old. I like shows that we can all watch together. Glad you enjoyed the hub!

vespawoolf profile image

vespawoolf 2 years ago from Peru, South America

This Hub brought a smile to my face. I've watched some episodes but this makes me want to watch more! I agree about the fake accents. : )

bdegiulio profile image

bdegiulio 2 years ago from Massachusetts

Hi Glimmer. I have to tell you that The Amazing Race is my favorite show. I am absolutely addicted to this show. I love the concept and to travel around the world in a race is just right up my alley. One of these days I am going to apply to be a contestant on the show. Maybe... hopefully, . And when I do your great tips will come in very, very handy :) Great job as usual.

vocalcoach profile image

vocalcoach 2 years ago from Nashville Tn.

I watched this show for the first time last season and did enjoy it. Your tips are right on! What an interesting and awesome hub this is. Sharing!

Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

Glimmer Twin Fan 2 years ago Author

Ha tirelesstraveler - I don't think my husband and I would have the stamina for the race, let alone get up the nerve to apply. Maybe one day. I hope this show is around for a long time! Thanks so much for reading and commenting.

Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

Glimmer Twin Fan 2 years ago Author

I'm so glad you enjoyed it Vespa - You should definitely watch more. It's such a fun show. Glad you agree about the accents, not sure why but it really bugs me. Thanks for stopping by!

Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

Glimmer Twin Fan 2 years ago Author

Bill - You should definitely apply. With your travel knowledge you'd do a great job. We are with you and love this show. My 11 year old daughter wants to be on it, but I told her she was way too young. Hopefully it's around when she is old enough. Thanks so much for reading. Good luck if you apply!

Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

Glimmer Twin Fan 2 years ago Author

Thank you so much vocalcoach! I'm glad you liked the hub and appreciate the share. It really is a fun show for people to watch.

teaches12345 profile image

teaches12345 2 years ago

We used to watch this show and found it so entertaining. The competition is so interesting and challenging. I don't think I would make the first leg of the race. Wish I had time to watch it now.

MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean

I would recommend you for coaching. Thanks for your very wise analysis. Voted Up!

Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

Glimmer Twin Fan 2 years ago Author

Thanks teaches! I'm with you and I don't think I'd make it too far in the race. Some of those challenges are really tough! I'm not good on heights either.

Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

Glimmer Twin Fan 2 years ago Author

Hi MsDora - Glad you enjoyed the hub and thanks for your kind comments.

DeborahNeyens profile image

DeborahNeyens 2 years ago from Iowa

I used to watch this show all the time. I think my husband and I would do very well as contestants. However, we don't bicker enough so we wouldn't make very interesting television. : )

Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

Glimmer Twin Fan 2 years ago Author

Thanks Deb! I know, my husband & I would not bicker enough either. Although I can't imagine how stressful the race is. We always take bets on who will be divorced within a year. Thanks for reading and commenting.

Tracie Bruno profile image

Tracie Bruno 2 years ago from Delaware

Your analysis of the show is similar to my husband's analysis to football games. Both make me chuckle. I would never be able to be a contestant, but I will catch some episodes and try being an armchair coach. Loved the hub.

Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

Glimmer Twin Fan 2 years ago Author

Like you I think I like being an armchair coach although I would love to travel to some of those places! Glad you liked the hub. Thanks for reading.

aviannovice profile image

aviannovice 2 years ago from Stillwater, OK

I don't have a TV, but it does should like an interesting show that could be quite amusing at times. Imagine the birds that I could photograph!

Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

Glimmer Twin Fan 2 years ago Author

Hi aviannovice - You definitely could get lots of pics of birds, but I'm not sure if you'd have enough time. They go so quickly from country to country. That would be my down point, I would want to stay in all of these countries and really explore them. Thanks for reading and commenting.

Kristen Howe profile image

Kristen Howe 19 months ago from Northeast Ohio

Glimmer Twin Fan, great hub on Amazing Race. I watched it since season one. One day my brother would try it with my SIL or my cousin, maybe in his dreams. Are you enjoying the new Blind Date edition that premiered two weeks ago? Voted up!

Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

Glimmer Twin Fan 19 months ago Author

I love the new season Kristen! It adds a nice twist. I'm still not bored with this show and we love watching it as a family. Glad you enjoyed the hub. Thanks for reading and commenting.

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