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200

To avoid any lingering feelings of guilt, you can call the airline and ask them what they'd like you to do with the blanket. Explain that you took it by mistake because you were not fully alert when you left the aircraft. Most likely, they'll tell you to keep it, because it would cost more for them to receive it in the mail and return it to the blanket ...


157

If you've been on a plane before, I'm sure you've walked past first class; nobody cares. If you want to dress up, sure, but I'd prefer to be casual and comfortable.


154

"Sir/Ma'am, no thank you." or "Sir/Ma'am, I am not interested." Followed by (if needed) "Sir/Ma'am, I am sorry, but I specifically requested and was given this seat. I am not willing to change to another seat for any reason. Perhaps someone else might wish to help you."


149

Being a supervisor at a well known 3/4 star hotel I speak from experience. If a consumable/expendable amenity has been provided in your room, it is yours. This includes personal care products, snacks, coffee, toilet paper, etc. Housekeepers aren't supposed to leave these items for reuse anyways and should ideally be thrown away whether you use them or not....


145

We live in a strange world where manufactured goods (like blankets) are very cheap, and people's time is very expensive. Our moral (and legal) codes haven't caught up with this: so we feel bad at taking a blanket from an airline, but we don't feel bad about taking 15 minutes of their employees' time. But the 15 minutes costs the airline much more than the ...


141

Your in Europe is an overgeneralization. But that does not solve your issue in individual cases. So: This has nothing to do with etiquette, anyway. You have a medical condition, that goes beyond etiquette. I have a medical condition that requires me to drink a lot.Can you bring me 2 liters of tap water to go with the meal? Do not make it more ...


141

Or should I just forget about it, having learned my lesson? Just forget about it. No one is going to come after you for stealing a 2-euro blanket. Keep it as a souvenir and don't steal any in the future.


139

Outside of a temple, or perhaps dinner with the Emperor, "itadakimasu" has zero religious connotations. A reasonable translation would be "thanks for the food" said to no one in particular. The after-dinner phrase is "gochisosama". No one in Japan will expect you to know the details, so you can just sit quietly and let the moment pass. Display expert use of ...


124

As a white, Christian, American person I can definitely say that nobody would (perhaps should) be offended by your dietary restrictions. I have a number of friends who are vegetarians for no reason other than they decided they wanted to be. In my opinion, that is far less sacrosanct than religious reasons, and I have always made sure to accommodate them when ...


122

Do you have some kind of roti or some kind of flat bread that can go with the rice? People may be less edgy if they think of it as eating taco or burritos by hand. It might come down to whom you're eating with. Westerners do eat BBQ ribs, fries, hamburgers with hands as well. Even those that do not might not be appalled if you use your fingers in a ...


115

I’m a former Immigration Officer myself (in the UK). Saying “hello” (or “good morning/evening” etc) is entirely appropriate, just like any other encounter in the English-speaking world. It distinguishes us from machines, acknowledging the human interaction. In other words, if you did not greet the officer then you may as well be using one of the automated ...


106

I would say it's the other way around. Italian chefs don't like to see leftovers on the plate as it could signal that you didn't like the food. Once, in a local bar in which I have lunch every day, I left with an unfinished plate on the table, and I was interrogated the next day to make sure nothing was wrong with the food. However, there is another ...


105

I'm English and lived in Glasgow for 4 years. Understanding many (but certainly not all) people will be tricky (even us native speakers struggle), but they'll be very willing to try to help you understand, and it won't cause offence. You probably won't even need to explain: as soon as they see look of blank incomprehension and hear you begin to say "Err, ...


103

It'd be like going to a comedy show and telling the comedian off for making jokes at the audience. If it's expected and part of the 'show' or experience, it's what he does for a living, enjoys doing and to be told not to do it - well it'd be considered wrong. I'd hope you wouldn't tell the waitress not to ask about your day (she's being friendly as part ...


103

I've lived in New York City for most of my life, and I've never whistled for a taxi. I have, however, hailed many taxis by silently raising my arm or indeed just making eye contact without any additional gesture. There have been one or two occasions when I've yelled "taxi," but only when the vehicle was on the other side of a wide avenue and the driver's ...


102

Simple You don't buy it Let's just analyse this for a bit shall we? You're not paying for the ice cream, you're paying for the experience. If you like ice cream but don't like entertainment or 'street entertainment' to be specific, buy your ice cream from somewhere that doesn't do that... Do not try and get the ice cream vendor to not 'do his show' for you....


94

Bidet Who Are You? The bidet is a sanitary installation which looks like a shallow toilet bowl with water taps. The purpose of the bidet is to clean up after you've done what you came to do in the toilet. The rationale here is that sometimes toilet paper isn't enough and you can't always shower after you went to the toilet. Enters: the bidet. I feel like I ...


92

they can exploit it in their favor Everything in restaurants¹ is more expensive than the pure cost to acquire or produce it. This is how the waiting staff and location is paid. The only difference in Germany is that there is no culture of offering free tap water everywhere. Thus asking for tap water in a German restaurant (and expecting to pay less than ...


92

In France it is required by law to provide tap water to a customer, for free. It is very common and acceptable to ask for tap water in a pitcher in a restaurant. Don't hesitate to ask for a refill.


87

I'm Portuguese and every bathroom has a bidet. Only the really small ones don't. It is something I find in European countries with Latin roots (specially Portugal, Spain, France and Italy). From personal experience and of others, it is not commonly used, although useful on those few times. The main uses are to clean: Your feet: Sometimes you come home ...


86

Since the issue is not only with food that you can spill but also with drinking from bottles or cans (even if you buy it from a vending machine, you are not supposed to drink it while you walk), which are not as easy to spill as walking around with a ramen bowl, this is not a hygiene issue. The topic is much more about the respect for food at large. When ...


86

Itadakimasu means, literally, "[I humbly] receive". Yes, the origins of the phrase may be about giving thanks to the gods, but at this point it's about as divorced from that as telling someone "bless you" when they sneeze is about warding off evil spirits. In any case, a lot of Japanese people don't say it, and they certainly don't expect foreigners to ...


84

The other answers are excellent, and correct. I wanted to share a few extra ideas because you specifically said: Do note that I am very shy and submissive in public. I also am a shy person that's, for various reasons, done a lot of travelling on my own. What I always say to myself is: You'll never see any of these people ever again. And that gives ...


84

and just wanted to experience it at least once. Dress up, dress as nice as you like and comfortably can for a flight and make it a whole experience. You want to enjoy it so enjoy it to the fullest. Banter : Go ahead flag it I would not bother about all these comments and answers trying to dampen your spirit oh business class is nothing in the US, oh this ...


81

You're not supposed to do anything. Cleaning the toilet is housekeeping's job, and in better hotels in Asia it's common to have several visits per day: once in the late morning and once more around dinnertime (turndown).


76

Take name cards with two hands when given to you, give them with two hands. Look at the received card, put it in front of you on the table while you are talking to the person(s). You CAN punch with one chopstick into food and hold it with the other if it's something hard to eat (dumplings, potatoes etc). Don't stick both in however. Do not soak your sushi ...


75

Let's be honest, refusing a pen will never be polite in the eyes of people! It's your right for sure, but no one will understand, they will always think "it's just a pen, how rude!". Besides, people never ask for pens just for fun, they ask only when they really need to. What I do (as a cabin crew or a passenger) is to only use free pens (I collect from ...


71

A bit of open mindness will not kill you, the same open mindness you'd like to receive from other people who you think find your habits disgusting. Follow me: First and foremost, you can eat the way you want: when it comes to western culture, the only thing we generally do not like are noises, eating with the mouth wide open (included speaking with full ...


68

First time I've heard of this, and I think it's nonsense. There is a strong social convention that people should give up their seats (not just the designated priority seats) for elders, very young kids, the disabled/injured and pregnant. Nobody will be offended or think you rude for doing that. They might call you out if you don't. The recipient most likely ...


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