25 Surprising Ways To Offend People In Other Countries

Posted by , Updated on December 4, 2017


You are not going to believe some of the surprising ways you can offend people in other countries. It’s a lot easier than you may think. Usually you’ll offend someone by misunderstanding the cultural communication norms found in a country. Given that communication is 55% body language, 38% voice tone, and 7% spoken word; these misunderstandings should not be that surprising. Nevertheless, you should still watch out for them. Languages and communication norms vary across different countries and societies and if you don’t learn how these norms differ, things can get…interesting. As a note: since List 25 is based in the United States, “Other Countries” to us means “countries outside of the United States”. With that in mind, check out these 25 surprising ways to offend people in other countries.

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Devil Horns are common at most rock concerts in the US, and are the University of Texas' signature hand gesture. But in some places - Portugal and Brazil, for example - it can indicate that *ahem* someone's wife has been less than faithful.

DavilHornsSource: http://www.huffingtonpost.com

See how easy it is to accidentally offend someone from another country? You should also watch out for these 25 quickest ways to get in trouble (or offend people) while traveling.


Tipping is not common outside of the US and can actually be considered rude. In Japan and South Korea it's an insult.

TippingSource: http://mentalfloss.com

Don't bring wine to your hostess in Germany. While in the US it's pretty customary to bring a bottle of wine, in Germany it can be taken as a slight against the wine your hosts are providing you.

WineSource: http://www.viralnova.com

In some Asian cultures (Japan and China, for example) you're expected to refuse a gift several times before accepting it. To accept a gift right away is greedy and rude.

giftSource: http://www.businessinsider.com

In Thailand it's a social no no to pat someone, even a child, on the head. That's because Buddhists believe that's where the spirit lives , and you can't pat someone's spirit. It's not nice.

patting on headSource: http://www.huffingtonpost.com

SEE ALSO: 25 Normal Things The Bible Forbids But We Still Do »

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