We know that Japan is the land of weird and wonderful things. They always do unique things and even their etiquettes are completely different. You will find some etiquettes really admirable but at the same time, there are few other things that would drive a non-Japanese crazy. If you are going to visit the country for the first time, I would advise knowing about their etiquettes first.
1. Subway rules
Japanese take the rules regarding subways and other public transports very seriously. Talking loudly and staring at people is strictly not allowed. The standard rule also says that you must offer your seat to elderly or a disabled person.
The number of suffixes Japanese use to address a person is too damn high. San, Kun, Chan, Sama etc are the suffixes that have different meanings and they get added accordingly.
3. Exchanging business cards
Offer your business card with both the hands and if you rank lower than the other person, hold your card lower than their cards.
4. Elevator etiquettes
It’s an informal but a clear rule. If you are the first person to enter into an elevator, you automatically become a captain. You have to stay close to the door and keep the door open when the elevator stops. Once you reach your destination, wait for others to get out and then leave once they are done.
5. Posture matters
Japanese are very particular about their sitting style. They sit in a specific manner called “seiza”. In this position, you fold your legs underneath your thighs, as if it’s an armchair.
Do you think just bending down is considered as hello in Japan? There are different angles that show your respect towards the person. The hello ‘bow’ is done at an angle of 15° while the respectful one is done at an angle of 30°.
We all are impatient when it comes to gift and want to open as soon as we get them. But, Japanese avoid opening gifts in front of the giver. They think opening the gifts right after receiving is a sign of impatience and greediness.
8. Taking leave
We know that when it comes to hospitality, Japan is on top. They show great respect to the customers and when the customers leave, they follow them to the door and bow before the customer leaves.
9. Money shy people
They are little embarrassed to show money in public and this is why they use the envelope to give money. If there is no envelope, you can simply wrap the money with a piece of a paper.
10. No touching
Staring at strangers is considered as a bad manner in Japan. Also, the unnecessary touches are not encouraged. They want people to have their own space.
There is one place where all forget the rules and that’s bar. A professor can drink with his students, a worker can vomit all over the suit of his boss, these are all considered normal when they drink, and when they do, they drink heavily. Once they are sober and meet next day, they act like nothing happened between them.
Shoes are not worn in the houses and if you need to wear shoes, there are separate shoes for that. Be prepared when your Japanese friend invites you to his place.
These Japanese etiquettes are certainly unique and unusual for people from other parts of the world. Do share it with your friends and let them know about the basic Japanese etiquettes.