If you are planning to visit the Asian countries like Japan, Thailand, and Korea, it would be best first to learn the dos and don'ts of each country. The etiquette in Japan may vary slightly to that of Korea and Thailand. However, they share so much in common. To ensure you enjoy your travel and stay in these Asian countries, take your time and research wide. This article sheds light on the various etiquettes of the three countries and tips for your travel.
Japan Travel Etiquette
Japan is a warm and welcoming country to visitors, but the unique culture can be mysterious as it can be fascinating for first-time travellers. Here are some of the dos and don'ts to help you enjoy your visit to Japan.
Dos In Japan
- When meeting and greeting someone, the etiquette in Japan requires you to bow. Bowing is taken as a polite and respectful gesture and is the customary greeting in Japan.
- Do enjoy the various food samples but not in a piggish manner.
- In Japan, they treasure gifts. Do bring a gift from your native city like a souvenir.
- Do enjoy sharing meals as a group at the table than having individual meals. Do also enjoy slurping on the soup or the noodles. It shows you are enjoying the meal.
- Do arm yourself with few usual Japanese phrases, as not everyone understands English.
Don'ts In Japan
- Remember the no-shoes rule. Leave your shoes outside the house on the shelves and rows of footwear at the door. When entering temple halls and traditional accommodation, do not go with your shoes.
- Respect the chopsticks. Do not do anything that seems like you are playing with chopsticks. For example, avoid drumming the table, waving them for attention in a restaurant or even passing food with them directly to another person's chopsticks.
- Do not use your camera without permission to take photos of a geisha.
- Do not walk while eating and drinking in the public.
- Do not leave tips in restaurants, unless for a special service.
- Do not use the furniture to place your feet on. They consider it obscene.
Thailand Travel Etiquette
A new country means new customs. You need to learn the standard etiquette to avoid embarrassing yourself as well as others. Thais are known to be very forgiving, but you need to learn some of the dos and don'ts for your visit in Thailand.
Dos In Thailand
- Do be calm and keep patience regardless of what comes your way. Thailand is for the happy.
- Do dress in proper and presentable manner when visiting temples and shrines. Whether male or female, cover both your knees and shoulders.
- Do extend great respect and honor to the monarchy.
- Do give tips at excellent restaurants.
- If you get an invitation, do bring presents with you.
Don'ts In Thailand
- Do not be disrespectful in any way to images of Buddha and do not take those images out of the country.
- Do to show much affection in public. Avoid cuddling and kissing, especially in the presence of older Thais.
- Do not involve yourself with anyone or anything linked to drugs.
- Do not touch the heads of Thais or ruffle their hair.
- Do not shout at anyone or anything in public. It is seen as a sign of disrespect.
- Do not gamble in Thailand. The penalties are severe.
- Do not leave your valuables in a safe deposit box at Thai restaurants.
Korea Travel Etiquette
Dos In Korea
- Do try and eat everything you are offered. Koreans love sharing.
- Do visit the cultural site and museums. You will learn more than the dos and don'ts of the Korean culture.
- Do visit the bathhouses. It may be awkward at first. However, it is a norm there.
- Do give precise instructions in cabs. You may end up twenty minutes away from your destination.
- Do embrace the diverse culture in Korea.
Don'ts In Korea
- Do not call a person with you hand, your palm facing up. Koreans see it as demeaning, and most say it is a way of drawing animals.
- Do not seat on the first half of the bus. The first half is left for the elderly in Korea.
- Do not tip in a Korea restaurants. Though it might seem a polite way of appreciation, it might be rude to some people in Korea.
- Do not turn down foods and drinks. People in Korea love to share, and they serve their meals on one table in a family style.
- Do not take friendship making lightly. There some social conventions that you should learn for friendships. Male and female friendships are rare, unless for a romantic relationship.
Tips to enjoy the locals in the three countries.
- These three Asian countries can be fun to travel in. However, these few tips will help you feel comfortable in any of the three countries.
- Accept that cultural practices are unique.
- Respect the authorities of the respective countries. Follow the law.
- Be always honest when dealing with the locals.
- Be respectful and considerate to the local people.
- Respect their religion and sacred places.
Before visiting any of these Asian countries, plan early enough to avoid unnecessary confusions. You can utilize the internet to learn about various aspects of your destination. Determine what is expected of you as a foreigner and a visitor. Also, after your visit, be sure to make some friends.