As we travel the world, we must abide to different countries rules. Various places maintain contrasting opinions, cultures and etiquette. It is paramount to respect others and not to cause offence. Firstly, you do not want to get into trouble and secondly you and everyone else will have a better experience if you get on. In some places you may be one of the few Britons to have visited. So make us proud and give us a good name.
Here are some top tips on how to stay polite in Japan:
Shoes – when entering a house or temple, you must remove your shoes. Make sure to bring socks in your bag to wear. Some houses provide slippers for guests. If in doubt, always take your shoes off. It is terribly rude in the Japanese culture to wear outdoor shoes in someones clean home.
Do not talk on your phone – when traveling on the train, it is considered rude to make phone calls. You must respect other passengers and quietly play games or text. You can talk to friends and colleges quietly next to you but be sure not to answer any phone calls.
Bowing – when you meet a new person or indeed greet a friends you must bow. The other person will follow to bow back and you must bow once more. Normally the older more respected person stops the bowing first. Smile and bow as many times as you can.
Baths – traditional bathrooms in Japan have a pre-heated and run bath, you must wash yourself by a sink first, relax in the bath and then wash again after. No soap should be used in the bath, this should be done after. The bath is simply to relax in.
Eating – In restaurants to start with you will be given a wet towel to wash your hands with. Make sure not to burp, blow your nose or eat loudly at the table. It is considered rude. Once you are finished with your meal, return it to how it was before. Place lids back on the dishes and leave your chopsticks back on their rests.