Travel brand Expedia has compiled a guide to etiquette for 18 of the most-travelled countries in the world, revealing some unusual traits across five continents.
Expedia’s guide has been created for both business and leisure travellers, and covers greetings and common phrases, as well as behavioural tips for restaurants, homes and meetings. The company hopes that it will avoid causing unintentional offence or embarrassment whilst abroad.
For example, punctuality varies dramatically across the globe. It may be considered polite to arrive early in France, Japan or the United Arab Emirates, but in Mexico this is seen as rude, and people are normally around half an hour late here, whilst in Germany being early is an indicator of poor planning. Turning up early and filling the time with small talk may be fine in Turkey, but it would not be appreciated in Germany or the United States.
The guide also covers some unusual customs practised in different nations:
- In Egypt you wait until the oldest male has started eating before tucking in yourself
- In a Japanese household, your shoes should be taken off and point away from the doorway you are about to walk through
- In Spain and Brazil it is normal to be interrupted and to interrupt others
- In Turkey expect locals to stand close to you while conversing, but don’t back away or you will be branded as unfriendly
- In Australia, colourful and even vulgar language is acceptable in business scenarios
- Whilst in some countries it is customary to leave a little food on your plate, it is considered offensive to waste food in the Netherlands
Kasha Dubaniewicz, Project Manager at Expedia says: “Our guide to etiquette around the world is designed to help both holidaymakers and business travellers, ensuring they feel confident and informed when it comes to cultural differences and surprising norms. Hopefully this guide will prevent embarrassing faux pas in the future!”
Expedia’s etiquette guide can be found at: https://www.expedia.co.uk/vc/c/etiquette-around-the-world/