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Not everywhere is the same as America, coming as a big surprise to no one.

Every country hands down their own customs and ways of living, built over centuries, sometimes even millennia, of interactions and societal preferences. You might encounter these while traveling, forcing you to make a simple decision that could either please someone or make them incredibly frustrated. Just remember, keep an open mind and never worry about asking:

Do I take my shoes off or leave them on?

Reddit user, u/Faking_Faker, wanted to know what never to do when they asked:

What is considered disrespectful in your country?

It's All In What You Wear

Most cultural customs of respect come in what you wear. What might be acceptable to have on in your own home won't fly when you travel abroad, so be prepared to ditch whatever you're wearing at a moment's notice.

Shoes In Houses Is A Big Deal

Not taking your shoes off when you enter someone's home.


Here In Mexico we don't take our shoes off, we just step on a rug before go in someone's house


Can confirm when I visit family in Mexico and growing up in a Mexican household here in the states. I don't think anyone ever took off their shoes except like in their rooms/on the bed because at least for my family, if your shoes were off in Mexico, you were bound to step on anything little creature or the house would just constantly have dust blowing in so your feet would be dirty anyways. I guess it just stuck to my parents and everyone else who came to the states lol.


Don't Block The Lord

It's considered "disrespectful" (perhaps even irreverent) for a man to wear a hat in church.

Women can wear hats in church, if they wish - but not men (even in winter, when it's cold outside and the building is only minimally heated).


Don't Turn Them Away

To sit down and your shoes are facing the one you talking to


Being Polite Out In Public

Truthfully, the easiest way to make a social error is out in public when everyone can politely remind you you're doing something wrong. They're not trying to be mean, per say, but it does give the most eyes to your mistake. Just hold the door open the next time and be sure to slurp your noodles.

Give The Wave

Australian here. If someone let's you merge in on the road, or if you let someone pass on a tight street, its SUPER important you give them a little wave. If you don't, it makes you a massive cunt.

Also, using overly formal/respectful language is like, a way of showing disrespect to someone


You Better Finish EVERYTHING

I am not from Italy but my parents are from there and it is offensive to the chef or who ever cooked your meal if you do not finish what they have cooked.



Being loud in public transportation. This includes laughing loudly.


To add to this: playing music in public.

Even on hiking trails around my city its a guarantee that you'll pass at least one person with a speaker, blaring music. I came out here to get away from the city grind wtf


We Said 7:00, Sharp

Germany: Being late to an appointment, even though it's a meet up with friends, is considered very, very rude. Tbh I would hate letting someone wait for me so I always arrive half an hour too early lmaoo even to doctor appointments


Yeah same in Sweden.

The culture clash of South Americans (maybe central as well?l and Spaniards/portugese with germanic/scandinavian is frustrating.

To me its a sign if huge disrespect and waste of others time to be late for appointments. When visiting someone at home its a bit more lenient but having someone wait around in a public place or such I can't really handle me or others showing up late, especially when it goes into a few hours...


It's Okay?

Slurping or chomping your food.

It's something that you really don't notice until you're somewhere it happens. It may be one of the biggest cultural shocks while in parts of Asia.


I went to China for a month and ate a ton of noodles while there. One day we were eating really long noodles with oil/sauce on them and as I was eating I noticed that I had to continuously wipe my mouth with the napkins while my asian friends did not. Then I realized that when you slurp it leaves room between the noodle and your lip to let the sauce enter your mouth and it doesn't end up piling up on your lips as you suck the noods in. That was the day I learned why slurping is big in Asia.


The Lesser Known Explanations

These ones feel ingrained to their countries of origin, built around years of interactions. Keep your ears open when you travel abroad and you'll learn a lot.

Filipino Households Aren't Playing Around

Try to talk with elders or someone 7-10yrs older than you without using "po" and "opo".


The Art Of The Tea Dance

There are very specific rules about offering tea to someone in Ireland. When someone offers you tea you have to say no. Then they have to "are you sure?" and you have to say "no thank you I'm certain". Then they have to go "ah go on you'll have a bit. Then you have to go "no I'm fine thanks". It keeps going on like this until one person gives in. So if you offer someone tea and they say no you have to keep pushing. If you don't it's just not Irish.


How Very Canadian Of You.

If you bump into someone, it's expected that you say you're sorry. Makes sense. But if someone bumps into you, you also say sorry. And if you almost bump into someone, you still say sorry. So when someone bumps into me or almost bumps into me, and I say sorry but they don't say it back, I feel a deep rage within me that the Canadian Code has been disrespected. I don't need to be sorry! But I said it! How dare you stay silent?!

Although, I one time apologized when I saw two people bump into each other near me when I had nothing to do with it, so I may be taking this a bit too far.


Wait, Huh?

I've lived in Peru for five years now and the one thing that continues to baffle me is that people being dishonest in transactions is abnormally common and accepted as normal, but calling out the dishonest person is considered a horrible breach in etiquette and cause for legal action even if true.

So in short: stealing? Acceptable and no big deal. Calling a thief a thief out loud? Horrible behavior.


I'm Fine, How Are....I'm Already Bored...

Not engaging in small talk. People are so affronted if you don't do the whole "How are you? I'm fine. There is weather outside." My husband and I are seriously so bad about this and need to move to Finland.


I wish there was a happy medium. A little small talk can be acceptable, but mostly, tell me what you want and then go away.


Every country's customs should be understood with the respect you would want if someone came in to your own home. Be open-minded, listen to what they're saying, and always ask if someone wants shoes "on" or "off" when you visit their home. It's just common courtesy.

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