Travel Trouble

Rude! 7 things you should never do in other countries

Rude! 7 things you should never do in other countries

Travelling abroad is an ideal way to discover new cultures and find out more about yourself – and others.

Just don’t make a fool of yourself by doing the following things.

1. Don’t talk with your hands in your pockets in Germany

It’s considered bad manners. It’s also customary to keep your hands on the table while you’re eating.

2. Don’t tip in Japan

Service at restaurants and hotels will likely be exceptional in Japan, but tipping isn’t done; and it could be seen as degrading.

3. Don’t smile at strangers in Russia

They’ll see it as an intimate gesture, indicating a genuine affinity toward another person.

If you don’t know them, they might consider you insincere.

4. Don’t use your left hand in India

The left hand is thought of as unclean in Indian culture, so always use your right hand to greet someone, exchange money, or pick up merchandise.

5. Don’t wave your chopsticks around in China

It’s like drumming with your knife and fork. Best not.

6. Don’t honk while driving in Norway

It’s only used in an emergency – so your unnecessary beeping could cause drivers to panic.

7. Don’t forget to say hello in France

“Bonjour madame, monsieur” should be the first words out of your mouth, otherwise you’re subtly showing you feel the person is beneath you.

Written by Reader’s Digest Editors. This article first appeared in Reader’s Digest. For more of what you love from the world’s best-loved magazine, here’s our best subscription offer.