While English has become somewhat of a universal language globally, that doesn’t mean that you will automatically understand what is happening around you when you go globe-trotting. When you travel to a place that is very different from your hometown, it is important to know the basics about the rules and regulations, basically what is appropriate behavior. Rules and customs will differ from country to country and it is in your best interest to know what is against the law and what people may find offensive.
Many cultures have long-standing traditions that are only found in their countries. Learn the meaning of these customs, and you’ll be less likely to make a fool of yourself or be stuck downing a bottle of vodka because of your blunder.
10 The Calf Kidnapper in Jamaica
While American children are going to sleep, hoping for big bucks from their lost teeth under their pillows, Jamaican children are just hoping to live through the night.
9 House Moving in the Philippines
Forget the moving trucks. In the Philippines, you start with the foundation. Filipinos often gather their friends and family to lift their houses whole and trek them off to their new locations.
8 Insistence in Iran
It is expected that Iranians will perform Taarof, a practice of deference and respect to someone that they perceive as having a higher social class. When buying something at the market, this means that a shopkeeper may refuse payment several times, even though the custom is that he will eventually accept. The opposite is true with social invitations which are meant to be refused.
7 Vodka in Russia
It’s a well-known fact that vodka is the Russian drink of choice. You might understand why it is their most common cause of death after learning their drinking etiquette.
6 Bathroom Ban in Indonesia
5 Blackening in Scotland
4 Finger Cutting in Papua New Guinea
3 Baby Dropping in India
Each year during the first week in December, hundreds of babies are dropped from the Sri Santeswar Temple in Indi, Karnataka, India while the crowd sings and dances. The infants are dropped about 50 feet and caught in a cloth in the crowd below.
2 Intimidating Dance Moves in New Zealand
Rugby fans may have seen the All Blacks – the national rugby team of New Zealand – performing haka, a sort of chanting dance spectacle native to the Maori people of New Zealand. It involves intimidating facial expressions, stomping, clapping, chest-thumping, howling, chanting and tongue wagging in order to put fear into one’s opponents.
1 Cinnamon Showers in Denmark
If you are still single at 25 in Denmark, expect to pay a price. All unmarried men and women can be ambushed with cinnamon all day on their 25th birthday if they haven’t got a ring gracing that special finger. If that wasn’t enough motivation to get hitched, it gets worse. Those still unmarried at 30 get peppered with pepper.
An unmarried man is known as a Pebersvend or pepper journeyman, and an unmarried woman is called a Pebermø or pepper virgin. Apparently, these monikers come from days of old when spices, notably pepper, were sold by traveling salesmen who weren’t allowed to marry.
Sources: wonderslist.com, listverse.com, mydailydenmark.wordpress.com, buzzfeed.com, gendhislm.hubpages.com
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