Why don't Indians respect other people's time?

12 rules of conduct for your trip to India

India is a beautiful and exciting country for European travelers. In India you will discover interesting dishes, fairytale cities and experience many adventure. As in every country, there are some taboos in India which, if ignored, can be offensive and trigger negative reactions. So that you behave correctly in India right from the start and stand out positively we have some for you behaviour rules compiled. They should help you to better understand Indian culture and the people you meet on your trip, respectful to face.

The rules of conduct at a glance

1. Dress respectfully

2. Take off your shoes in temples and houses

3. Handshake in greeting

4. Polite yes, but not too formal

5. It's Indian time now!

6. Get personal? Expressly desired

7. Eat with your hands? Yes, but only with the right, please

8. Much is the basis for negotiation

9. Pronounced tipping culture

10. Do not point your feet or fingers at others

11. Unsolicited photographing of people

12. Feed or stroke the cows

Tips for the right clothes

Dhoti, kurta, lungi, salwar kamiz, sari ... traditional Indian clothing is very different from our western clothing. Many items of clothing consist of a long piece of fabric, for example like the Dhoti wrapped around the legs to form pants. The female counterpart to the dhoti, the sari, consists of an approximately 1.1 meters wide and up to 9 meters long Piece of fabric. Unlike the dhoti, the sari is still very widespread. However, one sees particularly in the Cities almost exclusively western clothing.

The sari is a sewn wrap skirt with one-sided shoulder wrap. © shutterstock.com

Globalization has some western influences brought to India. However, there is still some rules of conduct in terms of the clothes you should be aware of.

1. Dress respectfully

It is true that you are unlikely to be arrested if you do not adapt to the Indian clothing style. But the first impression counts! Do you rather dress conservativewill find you in many places friendlier faces look at. Your appearance creates trust and shows that you differentiate yourself from the typical tourist. OK, but how exactly should you dress now?

DOSDon’t
Light cotton or linen pantsShorts on men
ShirtsShorter than knee-high skirts on women
Long skirtsOff shoulder or strapless tops
Blouses and shirtsBikinis
Cover shoulders with a cloth

Show shoulders and short skirts wear are absolute in India taboo. This is especially true when visiting holy places, temples and others cultural attractions. Men prefer to wear light ones Cotton or linen pants. As a top is best suited shirt. While adapting to Indian fashion for men still seems harmless, many women will find it a lot harder to switch. Long skirts, to blouse and Shirt it should be independent of the climate. In general, should as little skin as possible are shown and tight and figure-hugging clothing is avoided. In big cities, jeans on women have caught on, but shorts on men or shorter than knee-high skirts on women are still frowned upon. Covered legs and shoulders are therefore always appropriate. If necessary, a scarf or shawl can be used to cover the shoulders on strapless tops.

The western influences can be seen with these Indian guests in a café. © shutterstock.com

Showing little skin also applies to public bathing beaches. Bikinis as we know them are in India unthinkable and one should be careful not to attract negative attention with them. However, some hotels offer Private beaches at. There it can be that the western culture is accepted and lived out may be. A little caution and, if necessary, asking the hotel staff are a good idea in case of doubt.

By the way: In India it can get quite cold at times, especially from October to February. A sweater should definitely be in your luggage at this time of the year.

2. Take off your shoes in temples and houses

Walking through the dusty and dirty streets of India leaves its mark on even the most beautiful shoes. The dusty ones Shoes should therefore moved out before entering the house. However, taking off your shoes is even more important holy places or temples.

Travelers are often made aware by signs or lettering that certain places are to be entered barefoot. © shutterstock.com

Also, make sure that there are shoes in front of the shops. If so, then you should also wear your shoes before business take off and take it Enter barefoot.

Taking off shoes is part of treating each other with respect in India. © shutterstock.com

Clash of different worlds

The social rules of conduct in India differ in some respects from Western customs and traditions. Cultural differences, for example when communicating or table culture, sometimes make it difficult for us to behave properly. understanding For Customs and Traditions Raising up helps make friends and one quickly positive impression to leave behind. The following rules of conduct will help you indian culture to understand and to behave appropriately in direct contact with Indians.

3. Handshake in greeting

The Indian culture sees a clear Distribution of roles between Mrsand man in front. Therefore, opposite sexes run Greetings without any Body contact from. The typical Indian greeting consists of the Place the palms of the hands togetherheld in front of the chest. To that one says "Namasté" - Good day. You can say Namasté at any time of the day or night and even as a farewell.

An Indian man would be a European woman never shake hands in greeting and therefore European men should not do this with an Indian woman either. Not even if you already know your husband.

Depending on the person you are speaking to, it can happen that your right hand is stretched out to greet you. Some Indians are very open to western culture. In that case, be happy to accept this gesture and shake hands with your new acquaintance as you are used to.

Two children say “hello” in Indian. © shutterstock.com

Not only greetings should be reserved. This is also strict for couples Refrain from caresses of any kind in the Publicity hip, trendy, popular. We are used to walking hand in hand through the street and holidays in particular are a time for many when you want to give your loved one a lot of time and show your affection. In India, however, caresses between men and women range from holding hands to kissing extremely reluctant to see and should therefore be avoided.

Good to know: since September 2018 homosexual couples of the Indian government accepted. Nevertheless, the same rules apply to them as to men and women.

4. Polite yes, but not too formal

Words belong in Europe "Please" and "Thank you" to the good manners. We are used to using it to express our respect. In India, however, the words generate unnecessary formality and can be misunderstood. When you go to a restaurant you can give the waiter "thanks”Say as there is a rather professional encounter is. However, it should be avoided with friends or acquaintances. Indians take it for granted to look after their family and friends. A “thank you” or “please” can therefore be misunderstood and unnecessary distanceproduce. The best way to show that you approve or appreciate something is to specifically address it. So say “the food was delicious” rather than “thank you for the invitation and the meal”.

5. It's Indian time now!

Time is different in India. Here you know no time pressure. While with us a delay of 10 minutes is reason enough for a call, this is it time in India much more flexible. So 6:00 p.m. can become 8:00 p.m.

This is also noticeable when you go to a restaurant. Waiting for the meal or the bill can therefore take an unusually long time. This is the opportunity once to eat consciously and the Enjoy the moment. Find out more about what's going on in Indian restaurants Delicacies expected in our blog post on "5 reasons to travel to India".

6. Get personal? Expressly desired

Indians are very curious and relationship-oriented people. And they are not too shy to show their curiosity openly. Open up many interesting and entertainingconversations collected. The locals will likely walk up to you on their own initiative and seek conversation.

Indians also like to show their curiosity by telling you Personal questions as soon as you get to know each other above your salary, background or family. Don't blame them for that. You can answer such questions answer honestly and one in return personal inquiry put. The people of India will be happy that you are so interested in them. If you don't want to answer a question at all, it is perfectly OK to only answer vaguely or not to stick to the truth.

7. Eat with your hands? Yes, but only with the right, please

As in India usually with the right Hand eaten very few households have cutlery or plates. You can find food in restaurants in rural areas on a banana leaf gets served. Here you just grab it with the hands to. But be careful: use to eat only the right onehand. The left hand is considered dirty, as it is associated with going to the toilet. You should not eat with your left hand or pass items around the dining table. In tourist areas or more upscale restaurants, however, guests can often dine with a knife and fork.

Tip: Before you eat with your hands, you should get them wash thoroughlyto prevent infectious diseases. Diarrhea in particular is a common problem among travelers in India.

Typical: The food is served on a banana leaf and eaten with the right hand. © shutterstock.com

Out and about in India

Below is some important information about customs that you should follow all over India. They are particularly noteworthy because some of them have existed for centuries.

8. Much is the basis for negotiation

In India it belongs to good toneto each other while shopping haggle. Anyone who does not get involved in it drops rapidly in reputation. If you get involved in it, it can after a certain time really fun do. Is haggling attached almost everywhereexcept where there are price tags and on buses or trains. Even with mobile kitchens, the prices are usually so low that haggling would be inappropriate. You can go with taxi drivers, dealers who speak to you directly and hotels Bargain but save a lot of money.

When you start bargaining, you are welcome to act a little and pretend you are not interested in the product at all. If your own asking price is rejected right from the start, it is often wise to just move on. In some cases, the salesperson will go after you because they don't want to lose a customer. After a few rounds of haggling, you will usually meet up in the middle and be both satisfied with the price.

This flower seller is currently offering his goods to a woman. © shutterstock.com

9. Pronounced tipping culture

Services in India tend to be cheap and paid less than in Western countries. Hence are Indian Employees often in hotels Tipsreliantto make ends meet. This includes Waiter, but also Pages as Cleaning staff. The amount of the tip should be around 5-10% be. The cleaning staff in particular are happy about 100 Indian rupees per day and room. That is about 1.30 €. Taxi drivers only expect tips if, for example, they help unload their suitcases. As a rule, however, the price for a taxi should be negotiated before starting the journey.

10. Do not point your feet or fingers at others

Feet will be as unclean respected and therefore it is important to others Peoplenot to touch with your feet. You should also be careful with books and avoid contact with your feet. In the event of accidental contact, one should contact better apologize right away. On the other hand, a sign of respect is to kneel down and touch the feet of older people.

Pointing your fingers at others is also perceived as outrageous. If there is no other option, it is advisable to use the whole hand or just the thumb.

11. Unsolicited photographing of people

Do you like to be photographed by a stranger without asking? Probably not. This also applies to Indians. Mostly have Indians nothing against one photo, If you asked beforehand become. Then they even try to find the right pose and have a lot of fun with you. However, they may quickly turn the tables and want to take a picture of you or with you in return. The White skin applies to the western world in India as Ideal of beauty and that's why people like to keep them.

12. Feed or stroke the cows

Cows are known in India as holy. You can often see them walking around in everyday life. However, they are not allowed to be fed or petted. Their sacred status also makes them a frequent cause of traffic jams, as they roam freely and also have right of way on the road.

Are the sacred animals in front of temples when encountered, travelers are often allowed to buy fodder from the cowherd for a few rupees. In this case you are welcome to feed the animals.

The sacred cows stand and lie in front of the Tillai Nataraja temple. At some temples you can buy food for the animals. © shutterstock.com

Practical tips for your stay in India

Below are a few tips & tricks for your trip to India as a little extra.

Comply with hygiene rules

It is advisable to pay particular attention to certain hygiene rules that you also know from home in India. This is particularly important regular and thorough hand washing.

You should always have these things with you during your trip to India:

  1. Anti-diarrheal medication
  2. Toilet paper
  3. Soap
  4. Hygiene gel or spray

Basically, we advise you to bring your first-aid kit with you Medication for diarrhea as the often spicy food in India is initially unfamiliar to western stomachs. Since public toilets are also rare in India, diarrhea is particularly impractical in India. In addition to diarrhea medication, it is advisable to take something with you Toilet paper and one piece Soap. Here is a full packing list with other useful tips.

Download Google Maps in advance

Nowadays almost everyone has a smartphone with them. The small devices are true all-rounders and help us in a wide variety of situations. However, for most functions you will need one fast internet connection. Google Maps enables download certain map sections in advance and so make it available for offline access. That way you can too without internet connection always one quick overview and look where you are on Google Maps.

With Google Maps, routes and maps can be made available offline. So that you always know where you are. © shutterstock.com

Let the professionals take over on the road

Cars, buses, motorcycles, teams of donkeys or elephants, free-range cows and not infrequently even pedestrians cavort on Indian streets. The fact that there is left-hand traffic all over India is what makes it Driving in India also for experienced drivers in addition to one Challenge. In addition, many regulations are different from city to city and one never really knows what is allowed and what not.

Travelers are therefore better advised not to take the wheel themselves and to leave the driving to an experienced Indian.

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