Questions about customary practices

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55
votes
8answers
18k views

Is it rude to give up your seat in Japan?

I heard that in Japan it may be considered rude to give up your seat for someone else while you are on a train or bus, because it would make the other person feel in debt with you. Is this true? (Of ...
2
votes
1answer
160 views

Does British Airways allow the use of KneeDefenders? [duplicate]

Yesterday a United Flight from Newark to Denver was forced to divert to Chicago's O'Hare airport after a fight broke out between two passengers over the use of a knee defender. Does anyone know if ...
13
votes
2answers
2k views

Tipping in Cuba as a Canadian

I will go to Cuba in the following days and I am not sure how to tip. On Tripadvisor It says: Do not tip with coins of your own currency, because foreign coins can not be exchanged in any country ...
5
votes
3answers
453 views

What is the correct way to pay in a restaurant when you get the check in a book?

In German restaurants (at least the less fancy ones) the waiter usually brings you the check and immediately collects the money. In other European countries (e.g. France, Italy, Belgium), the waiter ...
8
votes
3answers
938 views

Should you use English or (possibly broken) Japanese in Japan?

So I'm going to Japan next month with friends, and I'm the only one speaking reasonably good Japanese. However, I am really nervous about how to approach people when, say, buying train tickets and ...
10
votes
1answer
166 views

Couchsurfing hosting etiquette, length?

My question is regarding hosting, and how to deal with people who want to stay 5 or more days. I've hosted a few times now, but pretty specifically only accepted people who want to stay for 1-2 ...
9
votes
3answers
339 views

What is the proper etiquette at Japanese onsen?

Japan is a volcanically active country which means it has a plethora of onsen (hot springs) all around the country. Visiting these onsen is supposed to be a popular vacation destination for the ...
6
votes
1answer
187 views

When should I bow in Taiwan?

Under what circumstances, if any, should I bow while I'm in Taiwan? I know that Taiwan is now a separate country from Japan, and has its own customs and etiquette, but I think I've seen staff bow to ...
5
votes
2answers
257 views

Is it normal/expected to tip taxi drivers in the UK?

I've lived in the UK all my life, but since I have got relatively few shared taxis in my life, I don't have that much experience of what the social norms are for tipping. I almost always tip roughly ...
7
votes
4answers
399 views

Is tipping expected in Indonesia?

I noticed that my taxi driver stood around expectantly for a few moments after dropping me off from the airport; giving him 20k Rupiah seemed to satisfy him, but I was pretty much shooting from the ...
13
votes
1answer
618 views

In Asian restaurants and airlines is it correct etiquette to use the hot towel on my face?

In many Asian restaurants both inside and outside Asia, and also on some Asian airlines such as Korean and JAL if I recall correctly, hot cloth towels are given out to all passengers before each meal. ...
15
votes
1answer
3k views

What is proper etiquette on bringing one night stands to a hotel room?

somewhat related to "Can a hotel kick you out if you let an unregistered guest share a room with you?": In the, alas, completely hypothetical scenario where I'm out in a foreign town and just happen ...
10
votes
2answers
587 views

Etiquette of “spitting out” bones etc in China

In China you regularly see restaurant patrons spit out bones and other bits from their soup etc straight onto the table, and you can also read in various places online that this is OK. But is it ...
6
votes
1answer
712 views

Etiquette of eating noodle soup in China

I'm currently in Yunnan, China and one of the cheaper and still very yummy things to eat here is a spicy, oily, rice noodle soup. I'm used to getting similar dishes such as Laksa at home in Australia ...
15
votes
1answer
605 views

How to recognise/thank great cabin crew?

Those of us who fly a lot will know that there is a bit of a variety in cabin crew. Some (sadly more common on certain airlines) do the very bare minimum to ensure a safe flight, but nothing more. ...
9
votes
1answer
230 views

Are there any countries where red clothing is frowned upon?

In yesterday's paper it's been reported that our city mayor will be travelling to a number of cities and coutries around the world in an effort to build links between us and the places he visits. He ...
15
votes
8answers
2k views

How to hide your bodily odors after a long flight?

Of course I could fly first class on an airline that provide on-board showers. Since I lack the funds, that is not an option for me. The scenario is as follows: Your plane leaves in the evening. ...
9
votes
3answers
2k views

How do I avoid snoring when sharing a room in a hostel or lodge?

I snore and I know it. This causes quite some discomfort when I need to share a room with others. I usually try to stay awake until everybody else seems to be sleeping. The pokes or the sudden shaking ...
8
votes
6answers
9k views

How to prevent the passenger in front of you from reclining without notice?

I can totally understand someone reclining his seat on a long-distance flight. On a short hop, I don’t have any sympathy for anyone using his “right” to recline his seat. The seat pitch on short ...
4
votes
2answers
403 views

How long is an acceptable shower in Spain? [closed]

I hear taking long showers in foreign countries is looked down upon, especially if you are living with someone temporarily. Is there a standard shower time in Spain that is considered acceptable?
5
votes
1answer
166 views

Declining money from a Japanese friend - etiquette

My son's best friend is here from Japan, his parents paid for his plane ticket and sent $1000.00 cash. We would like to return the money to them - his stay and expenses are our treat. How can we do ...
12
votes
1answer
337 views

Presents for Japanese couchsurfer hosts

I was evaluating doing couchsurfing during my next trip in Japan and this question: What does a couchsurfing host expect from their guests? makes me want to ask if there is a sort of "etiquette" I ...
18
votes
4answers
2k views

What does a couchsurfing host expect from their guests?

Just that. I've never done couch-surfing and I'd like to start couch-surfing in my next trip, but I don't know what the host "expects". Do I have to take something in exchange for his/her offer? Or is ...
11
votes
1answer
1k views

What should I expect when I stay in a hotel?

I plan to stay in a hotel in Los Angeles, CA by myself for a few weeks in the near future. Is there anything important I should know about staying at a hotel? Things that I have considered but I'm ...
7
votes
1answer
304 views

Is it considered “cheap” to not eat dinner at your ryokan?

I'm booking accommodation near Izu Inatori for the dontsuku matsuri (don't google it at work!) and I'm considering whether to book dinner at my ryokan. I suspect that I'd rather be able to eat out so ...
34
votes
5answers
6k views

What is wrong with eating while walking in Japan? It doesn't seem to be an issue in other Asian countries

I have seen on many etiquette questions about Japan that this is a no no, but I can't seem to find what the reason for this is. I know that in countries like Taiwan or China it doesn't seem to be an ...
12
votes
2answers
609 views

Chinese etiquette: Most common mistakes

My question is inspired by this one: Japanese etiquette: Most common (and offensive) mistakes? Which made me think about my upcoming trip to China. As a Dutch citizen, I have experienced a lot that ...
42
votes
6answers
8k views

Japanese etiquette: Most common (and offensive) mistakes?

I am aware that Japan has many unwritten rules of etiquette. What are some of the most common (and offensive) breaches of etiquette made by visitors? On the flip side, what behaviors show respect ...
7
votes
1answer
812 views

Should I cover up my tattoo when visiting the Middle East?

I stumbled upon a question on blending in in Egypt, in which one user warns that Egyptians regard tattooed people as criminals or foreigners. How big of a problem will tattoos be for a regular ...
11
votes
1answer
346 views

Tipping Etiquette for NYC Taxis

I'm going to New York City soon for business, and I will probably be using taxis frequently to get around. Is there a certain expected tipping percentage for NYC cab drivers?
13
votes
3answers
4k views

How long is a typical CouchSurfing stay?

When you are staying with a CouchSurfing host, what is a typical stay duration? Is CS intended for short (1- or 2-night) trips, or is it not unusual to stay for a whole week or longer? If I am ...
7
votes
3answers
907 views

How difficult is it to eat and drink during ramadan in Thailand and Malaysia?

Next month I'll visit Thailand and (maybe) Malaysia. From 19th july to 20th august muslim countries celebrate the ramadan. When we were in Egypt, we didn't perceive that we were in ramadan, but in ...
5
votes
1answer
602 views

Taking photos in Japan

I plan on taking photos of everywhere I go in Japan and am wondering if there are certain places, e.g. airports or possibly temples, where photos are not to be taken. A link to online resources would ...
11
votes
1answer
306 views

Gift giving in Korea: Do I have to wrap snacks?

I just arrived on Seoul and brought some packets of dried mangoes for my hosts. I forgot to wrap them however. I've read that Koreans are particular about their gifts being wrapped but these gifts ...