20 People Share The One Thing You Should Absolutely NOT Do When You Visit Their Country.
Thank you for all the folks from around the world that shared their country's biggest no-no on Quora. They're going to save a lot of people from doing this...
1. Daniel Gospodinov from Bulgaria
If you are giving a woman flowers, avoid an even number of flowers in a bouquet or chrysanthemums. They are for dead people.
Also, don't mind people being a bit late (5-15 minutes is the standard). It's very usual for Bulgarians.
2. Maura Rodriguez from Brazil
Dont make the Okay hand gesture making a circle with your thumb and first finger may have a positive connotation in the rest of the world but has a very offensive meaning in Brazil.
3. Judith Meyer from Germany
As far as I'm concerned, there's only one "absolutely not" rule for Germany: Don't do the Nazi salute. Not even in jest. It's a crime and every year there are tourists arrested for it. Also don't carry any Nazi symbols on you.
4. Winston Ford on The United States from America
Don't assume all Americans are alike. We're a country of over 300 million people spread out over 3,000 miles. There are vast cultural differences between someone from the South, the Midwest, East Coast, West Coast, etc. Also, many Americans identify with their state first (New Yorker, Texan, Californian) before they identify with the country as a whole.
5. Balaji Viswanathan from India
Don't engage in physical contact with a member of the opposite sex. Hugging and handshakes are still frowned upon in most parts of the country among members of opposite sex. Unless the local offers to hug or handshake, don't. On the other hand, among members of same sex hugging is pretty common.
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6. Karthik Venkatesh from Italy
Do not order a cappuccino or a cafe latte after 11:00 (am). Also, do not go to a cafe and just say 'Coffee'. They would follow it up with 'which type?' Always be sure of what you are ordering.
7. Karthik Venkatesh on The Netherlands
Do not beat around the bush in order to convey anything. Dutch people are very direct and they expect everyone to be so. If they don't like something, they would tell that on your face. No hard feelings but that's how it works here and that's a whole lot better than being superficial.
8. Curtis Lindsay from the American South
Don't fail to smile back if someone smiles at you or to wave back if they wave at you, and don't ignore someone if they speak to you in passing. Refraining from pleasantry is considered capitally rude. Especially among older people, "yes sir/no sir," and "yes ma'am/no ma'am" are considered proper forms of address to all but close friends. It's considered especially important that young people speak to older people in this way.
9. Neha Kariyaniya on Malaysia
Never touch anyone's head or pass anything from above the head. It is considered to be the most sacred body part.
10. Jonathan Sanchez from Peru
Do not criticize peruvian food. Seriously, this is maybe the most sacred thing in our country. The one that ties all the people, no matter their social class. Do you want to make happy your peruvian friends? Make a compliment about the food: "The first thing I did when I visited your country was eat some ceviche, what a wonderful thing!"
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11. PS Stanley from Myanmar (Burma)
Don't feel insulted and take it seriously if you are being honked at on the road. People here don't take it to heart and sometimes being honked at can be a good thing also. For instance, if you want to jay walk but there are many cars non-stop driving on the road, suddenly one car stopped and Honked at you . It means the driver has a kind heart and he stopped the car for you so that you can cross the road. Quite weird, isn't it?
12. Makiko Itoh on Japan
Don't tip anyone. No one. NO ONE.Tipping is just not part of the culture. Don't even leave the small change. People will come running after you with it. Seriously.
13. Ethan Henry from Canada
Don't ask how far it is to another city without checking on a map first. It's a big country.
And if you're in Quebec don't ask if someone speaks English. If the person speaks English, they'll speak to you in English. They can very clearly tell you don't speak French.
14. Alexandre Coninx from France
Avoid speaking about money, earnings and salaries, and if you do, absolutely don't mention any figures. For example you can tell you quit a job because you were underpaid, but you should not mention how much exactly.
15. Pachara Yoosawat from Thailand
Do not get into a taxi if the driver doesn't use the meter. Also, be careful when you catch a taxi, and always make sure that you know the direction.
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16. Sinan Ozel from Turkey
Do not drink the residue at the bottom of the Turkish coffee! No Turk ever drinks that. Apparently this is a joke among some waiters working in touristic places.
17. Togi Chinbat on Mongolia
Don't bump shoulder to shoulder with someone on the streets. This act is seen as very disrespectful. And if you bump the wrong person, your challenge will be happily accepted. I view it as a remnant from the "Ataman" culture we inherited from Russians.
18. Eivind Kjrstad from Norway
Don't be insulted if people don't seem to "respect you" for being somehow distinguished. People are very informal here and being on a first-name-basis with anyone short of the King is the norm. Even the prime-minister of Norway is most often referred to by first name; "Erna" (and previously: "Jens")
19. Alisanta Tjia from Indonesia
Don't come into somebody's home with shoes on. Even when host says "don't take off your shoes", you still should take them off them to show politeness.
20. Kaz Matsune on Japan
Don't Show anger or engage in an argument in public places. The main reason is that Japan's culture is shame-based. Japanese despise being embarrassed and publicly humiliated and avoid both at all costs. As such, showing one's anger can be considered as a sign of low intelligence, as an embarrassment.
When you're a kid most adults will tell you one thing or another is "cool" and "fun." Odds are you're too young to form any kind of opinion on the matter one way or another. You're a kid, right? You don't know what you're eating for breakfast. However, when you get older and form that larger worldview, you realize that yeah, maybe that one time when you were a kid actually wasn't fun.
These are those stories.