https://www.duolingo.com/Usagiboy7

Is it bad to say "thank you" in some cultures? (And information about other cultural no-nos)

  • 25
  • 19
  • 18
  • 17
  • 7
  • 5
  • 5
  • 4
  • 4

Thank you. It’s a common way of politely expressing your appreciation to someone who did you a favor. But in some parts of the world, it’s actually considered rude.

In every culture, you’ll find people use a variety of phrases and gestures to convey different messages. More often than not, we don’t even realize it. We grow up accepting these phrases and behaviors as “normal,” so it can come as a shock to discover that a friendly gesture can actually be interpreted as offensive in other places.

As a result, it’s important to be mindful of these communication differences when traveling. While we recently looked at ways to raise your cultural awareness, here’s a closer peek at some of the specific phrases and behaviors to avoid.

To read the full article, click here.

Enjoy :)

1 year ago

10 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/Portofan
  • 14
  • 10
  • 10
  • 7
  • 6
  • 6

The paragraph about Germany is a bit exaggerated - a little smile and a friendly "Schönen Tag noch!" is generally appreciated.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/igelchen
  • 25
  • 18
  • 17
  • 14
  • 3
  • 3
  • 1269

Absolutely. "Schönen Tag noch" is a common turn of phrase. I'm a very socially anxious person, but even I make sure to use it (or something similar like "schönes Wochenende" = "have a nice weekend") on the occasions where I find myself talking to strangers/acquaintances.
As for the smiling bit, I don't even know where they got that from. Needless to say it's completely inaccurate as well :)
I'd love to see an article amongst those lines that was actually correct for once because I'd actually love to know how this stuff differs in other cultures, instead of having to take everything with a massive grain of salt.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/WildSage
  • 22
  • 20
  • 18
  • 17
  • 16
  • 13
  • 10
  • 8
  • 8
  • 6
  • 6
  • 4
  • 3
  • 3
  • 2
  • 2

That article made me want to move to Germany since it left me with the impression that Germans aren't fake. Should I cross it off my list?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/E.T.Gregor
  • 25
  • 25
  • 25
  • 25
  • 23
  • 21
  • 20
  • 19
  • 16
  • 14
  • 12
  • 12
  • 7
  • 6
  • 6
  • 1050

Yes and no. I would say that the general impression conveyed in the article is correct, but they heavily exaggerate. You don't have to smile to people, but you won't seem like a loon if you do so. "Have a nice day" is appreciated, especially in a formal context, but you aren't necessarily considered rude if you don't say it. I would say, however, that it has no place among friends or close acquaintances; if I want to wish people a nice day in this context, I would use something less formulaic to show I mean it.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Portofan
  • 14
  • 10
  • 10
  • 7
  • 6
  • 6

I wouldn't say completely inaccurate, just that smiling and being polite is ok, if you really feel it.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Lento_Rodriguez
  • 14
  • 11
  • 10
  • 7
  • 7
  • 5
  • 3
  • 3
  • 2
  • 2
  • 2
  • 2
  • 2

Interesting. I'm naturally smiley so I guess I'll be a loon in Germany.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Deyan161
  • 20
  • 17
  • 14
  • 8
  • 7
  • 6
  • 3
  • 2
  • 2
  • 1014

Apparently at one time in certain Pacific Islands it was considered highly polite, if invited to a feast, to burp - if you did not, it was an insult to your host's cuisine.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AnnaGuaGua
  • 24
  • 15
  • 8
  • 31

interesting article! thanks for posting

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/DiseaseNerd

Very cool!

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/DragonPolyglot
  • 25
  • 19
  • 17
  • 15
  • 14
  • 13
  • 11
  • 11
  • 10
  • 10
  • 10
  • 9
  • 9
  • 9
  • 9
  • 9
  • 8
  • 8
  • 8
  • 8
  • 7
  • 7
  • 5
  • 3
  • 3
  • 190

It never ceases to amaze me how what I consider to be normal and informal -maybe even habitual- is taken very differently in other societies.

1 year ago
Learn a language in just 5 minutes a day. For free.