Before you travel it’s good to know the culture of the countries on your itinerary. Countries around the globe develop their own way of life, eating habits, entertainment, and even gestures. A gesture that may be perfectly acceptable in the US or the UK, maybe deeply offensive in another country–and the last thing you want to do while abroad is offend your hosts.
This infographic is both helpful and amusing. It shares some of the gestures that could get you into some awkward situations while travelling the world. Some of the gestures are pugilistic and may get you into a fight, others may even get you arrested. The chart shows gestures that many of us use in our daily interactions. Thumbs up and okay signs seem pretty tame, right? Wrong. They are downright rude in some countries.
Given that you probably don’t speak the language of the country in which you plan to travel you may be tempted to use gestures instead. Hand gestures form an essential part of communication. They also form an essential part of our body language so your intentions may be misinterpreted.
Beware, the seemingly universal gestures of nodding or shaking your head, have the complete opposite meaning in Greece and Bulgaria. So, unless you’ve done your homework you may end up agreeing to something you’d rather not do.
Make learning the culture of the countries you plan to visit part of your holiday planning schedule and you could save yourself a whole lot of embarrassment in your host country. Bon Voyage!