12 rules to know before coming to Japan, can make visitors feel uncomfortable

Japan has a lot of rules, which can be annoying for first-time visitors to this country of the rising sun.

In a country with a unique culture like Japan, visitors can feel frustrated by a series of strange rules, norms in life, as well as personal relationships.

Thank you for reading this post, don't forget to subscribe!

If you have the opportunity to come to Japan for leisure , business or long-term living, you should follow the rules below.

See more:  Converse Chuck Taylor "Souvenir Jacket" - Style from Japan

1. Don’t break the rules of using chopsticks

Never stick chopsticks vertically into a bowl of rice, as this is like a funeral rite. If you need to put down your chopsticks, place them on the chopsticks holder next to the plate. Avoid using your chopsticks to pick up other people’s food, it’s very rude.

12 rules to know before coming to Japan, can make visitors feel uncomfortable - 1

2. Do not wear shoes indoors

If you visit a Japanese house, you should take off your shoes and place them at the door. Outside shoes are considered unclean, usually the Japanese will prepare slippers near the entrance.

This rule also applies to traditional ryoken hotels, temples, schools, hospitals.

Shoes are also taboo in restaurant areas where diners sit on traditional tatami mats. In this case, you must not wear slippers at all because it can damage the straw mat. So make sure you wear socks and don’t have holes in them.

Another important rule is to exchange house slippers for other slippers when going to the bathroom. Slippers are usually left at the entrance to the restroom, often separate from the bathroom.

12 rules to know before coming to Japan, can make visitors feel uncomfortable - 2

3. Comply with queuing

The Japanese always queue in an orderly manner, whether they wait at the bus stop, train station, buy things, take the elevator… At the waiting area for the train to arrive, there are always lines available for passengers to line up to board the train. When the train arrives, the door opens exactly in the middle of 2 parallel lines, on either side are waiting passengers.

4. Don’t eat while moving

In Japan, people usually don’t eat or drink on the go. If you buy fast food sold on the street stalls, you usually stand to eat in one place. If buying drinking water from a vending machine, Japanese people often drink it on the spot and then throw the can or bottle into the recycling bin next to the machine.

See more:  adidas NMD R1 Primeknit "Japan Black Boost" - The bomb explodes slowly

Likewise, eating or drinking on public transport is considered bad manners, but there is an exception to this behavior on long-distance trains.

12 rules to know before coming to Japan, can make visitors feel uncomfortable - 3

5. Take a good shower before soaking in the bath

The Japanese love to soak in hot tubs. The bath is a place to relax, not to wash your body.

Traditional Japanese baths are called “furo”, which are square or rectangular in shape, and are smaller but deeper than conventional Western baths. Before sliding into the tub, you need to scrub it thoroughly with the shower.

If you’re visiting a public bath or onsen, you’ll also need to shower before soaking in the tub.

Also, tattoos are deprecated in Japan because they are associated with gangs. If you have a tattoo, you may not be allowed to use public bathrooms.

6. Don’t blow your nose in public

Blowing your nose in public is considered impolite in Japan. You need to find a private, unseen place to perform this behavior.

12 rules to know before coming to Japan, can make visitors feel uncomfortable - 4

7. Don’t leave a tip

Unlike in the US, where tipping is mandatory. Japan doesn’t have a tipping culture, leaving money to the wait staff can be seen as an insult. The bill often includes the service fee, even the taxi driver will refuse to round the price.

If you leave some change on the table, the waiter will definitely run after you to return the money you forgot.

8. Avoid talking on the phone loudly while traveling on public transport

Japanese people tend to use cell phones discreetly, keep quiet and don’t want to disturb others in public. On the train, Japanese people often use their phones to text, listen to music, read newspapers, but rarely make calls.

See more:  After adidas x BAPE “Camo Pack”, Vans released “Pop Camo” with BILLY'S ENT Japan

If you must use your phone in a public area, go to a quiet place with few people to talk to.

12 rules to know before coming to Japan, can make visitors feel uncomfortable - 5

9. Don’t point

Pointing at people or objects is considered rude in Japan. Instead of using a finger to point at something, the Japanese use one hand to wave at the thing they want to point.

When talking about themselves, they will touch their nose with their index finger instead of pointing at themselves. Using chopsticks to point at something is also considered bad behavior.

10. Do not pour soy sauce on sushi

In Japan, soy sauce is rarely poured over sushi, it is usually poured into a small plate, when eating you must use chopsticks to dip the sushi or sashimi into the soy sauce.

12 rules to know before coming to Japan, can make visitors feel uncomfortable - 6

11. Avoid giving and receiving objects with one hand

The Japanese have a habit of giving two hands when taking or receiving objects, including small objects such as business cards. When paying at a store or coffee shop, people often put money in the small tray next to the cash register instead of giving it directly to the cashier.

12. Don’t serve yourself drinks

When socializing with friends or colleagues, fill the other person’s glass, not your own. After doing this, they will do the same to you. Note, always hold the bottle with 2 hands when pouring.

Affiliate Disclosure - Disclaimer - Privacy Policy