Customs and manners are an essential part of Japanese life, especially if you have in mind that their culture is completely different from the one we lead.
That is the main reason why you should get familiar with invisible societal rules to reduce the chances of issues.
As soon as you enter here, you will be able to learn everything about first-time visits.
We can consider numerous aspects of this particular culture you wish to visit, which is why we will show you everything you should remember before you visit Japan.
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One of the most common and apparent conventions is bowing. It is the way of saying thank you, goodbye, and hello, among other factors. At the same time, it is the term of remorse, respect, greeting, and gratitude.
Therefore, in case you meet someone in Japan, you should give them a slight bow. However, you do not need to do it to everyone that bows to you.
As soon as you enter the restaurant or shop, for instance, you will hear the shouts of welcome as well as a bow from the staff as the form of respect.
If you are a customer, you should know that you do not have to bow back to the staff until you decide it is necessary. You should instead adopt the casual head-nod version of the bow as a way to acknowledge what others are doing to improve the overall shopping experience.
A casual nod is a much more effective way that people are adopting instead of formal bowing, especially in public. We can differentiate various types of bowing. For instance, a 45-degree bow is considered as the form of the highest respect and sincere apology.
On the other hand, the 30-degrees bow is used as the form of respect to the other side. You do not have to follow the rules as a foreigner, which is something you should remember before visiting.
Finally, a 15-degree bow is a semi-formal and perfect way to greet people that you are meeting for the first time. Check out this website: https://www.healthline.com/health/food-nutrition/travel-healthiest-cuisines for best international cuisines you should remember.
It is the best form you should adopt as a foreigner, especially since handshaking and other forms of direct contact are not something Japanese people are accustomed to.
Taking Off Your Shoes
This is one of the most confusing things that tend to happen to foreigners and tourists, especially since it is something they neglect until it happens. It is common in Japan for people to take their shoes off when entering a traditional guesthouse, restaurant, or temple.
Please have in mind that the traditional perspective allows them to take off their shoes when entering someone’s home while eating on tatami-mat floors at restaurants.
Today, people are still doing it with an idea to maintain the cleanliness of the building. However, taking off your shoes is a sign of respect, as well.
As a foreigner and tourist in Japan, you will not enter too many private homes, but you are going to visit traditional guesthouses or temples. In these situations, it is crucial to take off your shoes along the way.
As soon as you enter the building, you will see the entrance hall, in which you should leave your footwear to proceed further.
You may see the sign that you should take off your shoes, or you will notice a wide array of them sitting in something that resembles lockers where everyone is placing them.
If you notice these signs, it means that you should take off your shoes. Remember that Japanese people are neat and polite, which means that you should check out how you placed the shoes within the locker room.
It is vital to reposition them so that they are neatly hanging without affecting others. It is vital to be as neat as possible because that is one of the most critical traits that Japanese people tend to consider.
Before consuming a meal you have, most Japanese will put their hands together and use the term with translation such as “I humbly receive.”
Remember that before checking out Japan vacations, you should know how to properly react in particular situations.
Of course, they understand that visitors do not have proper knowledge on how to use chopsticks, but you should follow a few rules in case you wish to use them:
- Avoid using chopsticks for passing the food from one bowl to another.
- Do not add too much soy sauce in rice, because Japanese people are proud of their rice, and that could lead to surprising situations.
- Walking and eating is not something you will see, especially since it is considered a form of bad manners. Anytime you decide to eat, you should sit down in public places because the combination of eating and walking is not polite.