Understanding Greeting Customs aroud the World
A Traveller's Guide to Basic Greetings
An Everyday Happening
When you start a new day by greeting
Here are some greeting customs from around the World
As well as shaking hands, men, but not women, may also put their other hand on the person's shoulder, as a kind of more familiar greeting.
Kissing is a popular form of greeting, particularly by women to women or with friends you know well and is a greeting custom that has found it's way across the Channel to the United Kingdom. In Europe different regions have different kissing customs. Some may be on one cheek, some on both cheeks. People have adopted this form of greeting in the United Kingdom, particularly after seeing celebrities on the television making a great show of this act. Now it is an accepted form of friendly greeting between people who usually know each other well.
On other Continents, customs can be quite different. In Asia, the way the hand is shaped is significant.
In India, the palms are put together as though in prayer. This form of greeting is called 'namaste'. It is a form of greeting used by children.
In Japan the depth of the bow is important. The deeper the bow, the more respectful the person is.
In New Zealand, the MÄori tradition is to rub noses.
So Many Words to Use
In every country there are so many choices even for the same situation. Many regions have their own popular greetings. In English, Good Morning, Good Day, Good Afternoon, Good Evening are more polite forms of 'Hello'. Similarly, in Spain there are different forms of greeting for the time of day. 'Buenos dias' is 'Good Day' whilst 'Buenas tardes' is 'Good Afternoon'.
Informal ways to say 'Hello' may be 'Hi', 'Hiya' or in the USA, ' Hi, how y'all doin'?
Each continent has vast differences and it would be easy to choose the wrong greeting and offend. There are so many words, it is advisable to do your own research before you set off on your travels. It might be a good idea to just smile until you've learnt the proper greeting custom!