Top 10 Japanese habits that shock foreigners the most

Japan is the best country in the world, we know that. And if this country is full of surprises, there are Japanese habits that are quite surprising for the rest of the world. And to go a little further you can also look at the differences between Japan and France in illustrations, it will shake your ass.

1. It’s better not to be tactile

Put away that handshake, forget that kiss, drop that hug… In Japan we don’t touch each other and to greet someone we prefer a simple bow. And if you are a couple, it will be rather very frowned upon to roll big balls in the street.

Top illus france vs japon dire bonjour
Picture credits: Topito

2. We use different forms of politeness depending on the person we are addressing

In France we already have the “tu” and the “vous” which make foreigners very nervous. In Japan it’s still a different story. We use honorific suffixes for each person around us: “san” will be the most common (for “sir”, “madam” or “miss”), “kun” for boys of lower status, “chan” for children but there are also more far-fetched ones like “senpai” which is used for people with a certain seniority in a given structure.

3. There is a hierarchy even in the elevator

If you were thinking of taking the peinardos elevator, you’ve got your finger in the eye. This mode of elevation does not escape the demanding rules of politeness. Thus, the first person who enters the elevator will naturally have to stay at the level of the buttons and hold the door of the newcomers. Moreover, it is strongly advised not to speak during this interminable journey in the heavens.

4. We sit a certain way

“Seiza” means “correct sitting”, it is the traditional posture that the Japanese can hold for a very long time and which should fuck your knees in a very short time.

630px tea ceremony performing 2
Credits photo (CC BY-SA 3.0) : Photograph taken by Stephane D’Alu (en:User:Sdalu) in April 2004

5. You kind of have to bring holiday presents for everyone.

This tradition even has a name: “omiyage” (literally “earth product”). Can you imagine the hassle of having to bring a little shock to all your colleagues, all your family, all your friends? A certain idea of ​​hell for me. In Japan, it’s a way of apologizing for going on vacation like the big selfish person that we are.

6. We will have little chance of being robbed

Believe it or not, Japan is one of the least stretched countries. The notion of property being very strong, you will have every chance of finding your lost belongings at the nearest police station.

7. The expression “Sumimasen” is to be used in all sauces

In Japan it is customary to apologize all the time. For this, nothing beats using the word “Sumimasen” which simply means “sorry”.

8. Japanese children walk more with their feet inward.

It’s not so much a custom in itself but This article explains to us how the heirs of the Empire of the Rising Sun have a different approach from Western children. This would potentially be due to the “seiza” this sitting position mentioned earlier.

9. Their toilets are extremely elaborate

We have already told you about Japanese toilets, an engineering masterpiece that fascinates the whole world and reflects a level of hygiene rarely equaled.

10. There are vending machines everywhere

And even more amazing, these distributors distribute anything and everything. Normal stuff like juice, and weird stuff like eggs.

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