Features of Asian countries
Things to know when traveling in Asia
Holidays in Asian countries are becoming increasingly popular: exotic food, monuments and palaces with a thousand-year history, paradise beaches – all this is worth seeing with your own eyes. When going to Asia, remember that the traditions and mentality of the inhabitants of the east are strikingly different from ours. The more you know about local customs and habits, the more comfortable your vacation will be. Here are some practical tips to help you feel a little more “your own” among the locals so unlike us.
China In China they talk very loudly, including in public places. Perhaps this will be the first thing you notice when you come to China. But a loud voice and intonation does not mean that the interlocutors are angry or even strongly involved in the conversation.
There is nothing strange or indecent in treating other people. Close attention most often means only curiosity, but not hostility. Do not be surprised if they come close to you and begin to consider that it does no harm, right?
Beijing Be prepared for the fact that taxi drivers do not speak and do not read English. Therefore, be sure to bring the address of the place where you are going, written in Chinese. It is also wise to have the phone number of someone who speaks both Chinese and Russian / English.
Tipping in Beijing is such an unusual occurrence that if you leave it “for tea”, the waiter can run outside to pick you up. By the way, plastic cards in China are still not as widely used as in Europe or the USA, so you should always have enough cash with you.
Shanghai Most of the locals do not tip, considering that the service fee, which is included in the bill in good restaurants, is quite enough. But if you leave 20-50 yuan, nothing bad will happen.
Be prepared for the fact that the waiters will often offer you dishes that are called “special”, simply because they are expensive. This does not mean that they will certainly be tasty. So agree only if you are really determined to try sea cucumber or shark fin.
Dishes are usually served with the expectation that they can be shared. It will be correct to order at least one dish more than the number of people at the table. Ordering two or three will be even better, because this way you can try more new things.
The Chinese in Shanghai carry the bags of their ladies. You will see so little where else, maybe only still sometimes in Hong Kong, but Shanghai men consider it right to take care of their ladies in such a way.
Hong Kong Locals wear masks at the slightest hint of a cold. If someone sneezes and does not wear a mask, he will be condemned by everyone, including even completely strangers on the street. Also, an instant reaction to someone’s sneezing or coughing in public transport will be commonplace: no one will hesitate to move away from you or at least turn away.
In this densely populated city, respect for a stranger is demonstrated by minimal attention to his person. Therefore, do not be discouraged if your “good morning” remains unanswered. But in those cases when interaction is necessary – in stores, hotels or other similar areas – the service will be fast and focused on efficiency, rather than a manifestation of formal courtesy and hospitality.
Singapore In Singapore, do not be surprised that suddenly there are so many relatives around. Here the appeal “aunt” and “uncle” to all people of the older generation.
But the mass of Singaporeans is not the most open and friendly nation. In response to your peppy greeting, there may not be an answer. In crowded buses or trains, no one expects a special attitude towards themselves: it does not matter whether you are a man or woman, an adult or a child – each on his own and for himself. But this attitude does not apply to visitors, tourists are treated here with emphasized attention.
Often even the locals are not very well oriented in the city. If you get lost in Singapore, be sure to ask a few people for directions. By the way, there is no generally accepted direction for the pedestrian traffic flow along the street, so be prepared to make your way through the crowd.
Thailand Residents of Thailand love and respect their king. Criticism of the royal family is unacceptable and offensive. Conversely, your respect for the king and queen will be very pleasant for any Thai. If you live in Thailand and hang a portrait of a king in your home or office in a proper place, your action will be appreciated.
Remember that Buddhist monks are forbidden to touch a woman. If a woman wants to convey something to a Buddhist monk, she must do this not directly, but through an intermediary man.
Any Buddha image is sacred. Do not try to climb a Buddha statue to take a photo.