7 Cultural Mistakes To Avoid When You Travel Overseas

Here are some things you should know about these countries before you visit them to avoid offending anyone.

Envision yourself as someone who has been brought up to adhere to a cultural standard, only to have someone openly defy that norm in front of your very eyes. I know, it’s awful! Well, that may seem strange to you, but most tourists experience strange looks when they do anything that isn’t in line with the local culture. The best way to avoid upsetting the locals and to feel more at home during your trip is to do some research beforehand. Several common cultural faux pas are listed below, all of which you should try to avoid making in these nations. Continue reading!

Showing shoulders and collarbones in South Korea

In South Korea, it is considered rude to show off your shoulders and collarbone in public. This is due to long-standing cultural beliefs about the value of subdued fashion. However, wearing a miniskirt to a formal event is quite acceptable.

Tipping in Japan

Please don’t bring any extra yen with you if you’re visiting Japan. In Japan, appreciation is demonstrated via service, which is seen as a standard aspect of any work. As a result, gratuities are not required. Since it shows the service provider cares more about generating money than providing a quality service, it is taken as a sign of contempt.

Blowing nose in Japan

You might want to bring a box of Kleenex with you to Japan. In Japanese culture, blowing one’s nose in public is seen as exceedingly disrespectful and unclean. You should either wait till you go back to your hotel room to blow your nose or do so quietly.

Requesting a to-go box in Italy

When dining in Italy, there is no need to bring a doggy bag. Requesting a to-go box for any leftovers is frowned upon in this country since it demonstrates a lack of appreciation for the dinner and the culture. However, appreciating one’s time at the eatery requires admitting the food that is served. You can expect to enjoy every bite of your meal and leave the restaurant feeling well-satisfied.

Eating with a fork in Thailand

In case you’re thinking of visiting Thailand, put away your fork. Forks, knives, and other cutlery are frowned upon in local society. Instead, try to become used to eating with just a spoon.

Leaving Morocco after the initial farewell

To go to a Moroccan friend or relative’s home might take quite some time. One final farewell is considered rude in this society. This kind of conduct is read as a sign of disinterest or impatience.

Putting chopsticks in rice in China

Using chopsticks as though they were a fork is a classic rookie mistake in Chinese eating, evoking images of funeral ceremonies. It’s also impolite to point at someone or slap the table with your chopsticks.


Indrani Karmakar from Siliguri is a writer and artist. After graduating in Political science, she broadened her horizons and dived into the world of creativity. She loves adding humour and innovation to everything in and around her. When she is not working, you will find her collecting oddly shaped pebbles, doodling, crafting, and if you are really lucky- you can even catch her humming!
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