For those of you that have done any amount of traveling, you will surely know that many behaviors, customs, and social norms that we take for granted or perform without thinking can land you in deep water elsewhere. In fact, some of the socially acceptable behaviors on this list may seem downright silly to you. That’s what most people think at first, but if you ever plan on seeing the world, you’ll definitely want to take note.
Let’s take something as simple as pointing. In the United States, you just use your index finger to indicate whatever it is that you are drawing attention to. There is a reason, however, that Disney employees are taught to not point with one finger. In some cultures, it is considered rude. Instead, the employees are taught to point with two fingers. Another thing that can cause conflict is tipping. In some cultures it is expected (United States); in some cultures it isn’t (Europe); and in some it can even be seen as rude (Japan).
So wherever you plan on traveling, just make sure to read up about the local customs and traditions. If you want a quick overview though, we’re here to help. These are 25 Astonishing Socially Acceptable Behaviors From Around The World.
In some countries, like Japan, sniffing is acceptable, while blowing your nose is frowned upon. In many western countries, this would be reversed.
Not inviting everyone
In South America, Asia, and Africa, if you’re holding a party, even the bus driver gets an invite. In Europe and North America, this would be strange.
In Finland, being naked in a tiny sauna with strangers is perfectly acceptable, while making conversation at the bus stop is strange. In many other places, this would be the other way around.
In South Korea, one of the first things you would ask somebody (even a woman) is their age. This is so that you know how to formally speak with them.
Giving wine to kids
Welcome to southern Europe. Alcohol doesn’t have the same negative stigma in many countries as it does in the US. Having a beer on your lunch break is also normal, while in places like the US, it could get you in big trouble if your boss finds out and is seen as an alcoholic tendency.