Things you should know about countries before visiting them

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No matter where you decide to study, work or travel, if you want to enjoy your experience, first you must know something about local culture of that particular country. If you don’t, the chances are that you will find yourself experiencing culture shock and feeling a bit disappointed. What is normal and accepted in your country can be something outrageous abroad.

You want to stay safe and have fun? Take a look at what tips and guidance I have prepared for you about Things you should know about countries

 

Singapore

things you should know about countries

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Don’t feed birds, spit on the ground, eat in the public transport and/or litter. Singapore is perhaps one of the cleanest cities in the world, so cleanliness is very important here. If you are invited to a wedding, don’t give flowers to anyone. They are usually given to people who are ill or at the funerals.

See More: 5 vital skills that your teachers won’t teach you

 

India

things you should know about countries

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Don’t wear tight and revealing clothes as most of the people prefer more conservative and traditional way of dressing. However, in big cities wearing jeans and T-shirt is very common but most men and women still like to keep their legs covered. Also don’t kiss in public areas and don’t try to shake hands with women if you are a man and with men if you are a woman.

See More: 15 methods you can apply to avoid procrastination at University

 

France

things you should know about countries

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Don’t complain how long it takes for waiters to bring your coffee. Here you should take things easy and sit in a café watching the passers-by and enjoy the moment. Don’t talk about money and don’t expect the French to speak English.

Learning other languages is not popular in this country.

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Japan

things you should know about countries

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Don’t try to eat your meals in large plates and don’t give tips in restaurants. You should also give no hugs as most of the people try not to show their emotions openly to strangers and especially in public areas. When you use escalators, stand on the same side with the other people.

See More: Where do you want to see yourself in the next 5 years?

 

New Zealand

things you should know about countries

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Never make jokes about Rugby, Ring of the Lords and/or the Queen of England. Local people will take it seriously. Don’t laugh at people walking bare footed. It is quite normal and common. Don’t honk when driving otherwise you will insult people.

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Norway

things you should know about countries

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Don’t stare at naked people. It is normal for them to change clothes in public areas. Don’t talk about Church as many people in Norway don’t attend this place. When you talk to locals, there is no need to formally address anyone. Just use their first names.

See More: 7 strategic steps to apply for Charpak Exchange Program, France

 

United Kingdom

things you should know about countries

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Don’t break the queue and don’t ask residents how much they earn. Don’t invite people to your home unless you are very close to each other. Also don’t confuse “England” with“Britain” or “English” with “British”. English people are from England while British are people who live in Great Britain, which includes Scotland and Wales, as well as England. The United Kingdom or the UK includes Northern Ireland. The Scots and the Welsh get extremely furious when people refer to them as “English”. They don’t live in England and have their own local government.

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Ireland

things you should know about countries

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Avoid imitating Irish accent and don’t go to bars if you can’t pay for yourself. Don’t criticize Ireland. Irish people already know that there is something wrong with every aspect of their country (the Church, the economy and the politics) but don’t welcome outsiders bringing up those issues out for a discussion.

See More: 6 important points you should know while applying to Canadian Universities in 2015

 

Germany

things you should know about countries

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Don’t show Nazi greeting gesture with hands (you can be jailed). Don’t stare at people (they may think you are uneducated or mentally ill). Avoid being too friendly (Germans need some time to get used to new friends) and don’t congratulate anyone with their birthdays in advance. They think it may cause an unexpected death on the date of the birth of a particular person.

See More: Unforgettable student experiences of Holland

 

United States of America

things you should know about countries

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Don’t use American slangs you have picked up after watching Hollywood movies or listening to songs by 50 Cent or Eminem. Remember that people in Hollywood movies play the roles of friends, colleagues, partners and so and that’s why they use slangs. But if you are new and just met a local person you probably need to keep slangs away from your speech.

See More: My journey from a small town to Wisconsin Madison

 

Italy

things you should know about countries

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If you sit in a café or restaurant with your friend, don’t expect the waiters to bring you the bill. It is a bad manner in Italy to push customers to leave the place by asking them to pay. Also, don’t order any Cappuccino after lunch as Italians think that it is a major violation of Italian food rule.

See More: My next big step after Bachelors.

 

China

things you should know about countries

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When you are invited to a birthday party of your Chinese friend, avoid giving clock or umbrella as a present. Don’t write anything in red ink unless you are a teacher and need to correct an exam paper. Red ink is used for letters of protest. Be prepared to learn and speak Chinese one day if you plan to stay in China for a longer time. Nobody will speak English and even if you want to drink and you show the bottle of Coca Cola, locals will not probably understand what you are actually looking for.

See More: Why should you be studying abroad?

 

Russia

things you should know about countries

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Don’t expect people to smile at you on the streets or elsewhere across the country. Most of the Russians don’t like giving fake smiles and don’t laugh if there is no good reason or humor involved in the conversation. But that doesn’t mean they dislike or hate you. They are simply being straightforward and frank with you. In other words, don’t judge the book by its cover.

See More: Things I wish I would have known in College

 

United Arab Emirates

things you should know about countries

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If you happen to visit Dubai and grab a map at the airport, you can throw it away after about one month. Things in this part of the world change super fast – towers, roads, shopping malls, and micro-cities are constructed faster than you could ever imagine. When it comes to don’ts, don’t eat, drink or wear tight and/or body revealing clothes in public places during the holy month of Ramadan. Also don’t fight with anyone whether you are right or wrong.  Both of you can be departed.

See More: 5 basic points to consider if planning to study in Europe

 

Uzbekistan

things you should know about countries

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This is the country where I come from. If you happen to visit Uzbekistan,the very first thing you are welcome to do is to smile. Of the former Soviet Union republics Uzbekistan is the happiest country and most of the time you will find people to be easy going, open and smiling.

When it comes to don’t, avoid agreeing as soon as you are invited to a party, wedding or a local dinner. Try not to wear shorts, torn jeans or tight clothes when visiting local residents.

 

 

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Written by

Hi, I'm Akmal and I'm a teacher of English in Uzbekistan, freelance writer and founder of English Club Pro. Let's connect and help each other make this world a better place for everyone.

 

3 thoughts on “Things you should know about countries before visiting them

  1. Pingback: 5 things I wish I knew before I left for my studies abroad

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