Though China is one of the most progressive countries, it continues to be a highly traditional society. Here’s a pretty good list to avoid any faux pas during your vacation.
Ensure that you remove your footwear when entering a Chinese dwelling place, home or temple.
Start with the eldest while greeting family members. This is a sign of respect.
Wave with your palm down when calling out to somebody. Pointing or the use of your finger is only for the dogs.
Use both hands while presenting something, lest your offering will be considered incomplete.
Be extremely thankful if gifted; set it aside & open it later. This will ensure that you don’t appear greedy.
Be pleasantly surprised if random people walk up to you during your travel and practice their English.
Remain calm, if you find yourself in a tense situation, especially when dealing with officials. Anger and noise will only create an embarrassing situation.
Accept everything that your host offers.
Toast by touching your glass below that of the eldest person who’ll hold his/her glass the highest.
Ensure that you fill your companion’s tea cup when empty, especially if he/ she is elder than you.
Complete every single grain of rice in your bowl for some Chinese believe it’s bad luck to leave any.
Blurt out how much you love watching Yao Ming at the NBA.
Realize that animals will be treated differently.
Be on time to indicate that you respect others
Meanwhile, do not…
Write anything in red, unless you’re correcting an exam or writing out a letter of protest.
Tap your bowl with the chopsticks or leave it upright in your bowl.
Point your shoes’ sole or your foot’s sole at anyone.
Shake your feet, unless you’d want to shake away whatever little luck you have.
Touch someone’s head for it is sacred.
Gift clocks or books for “to give a clock” sounds like “attend a funeral” and “giving a book” sounds like “delivering defeat” in Mandarin.
Make sweeping political comments unless your counterpart takes the lead.
Engage in public displays of affection with your beau.
Be surprised when asked if you are married or if you are over 30 and single. Else you’ll be pitied
Drool at what someone else has; they might feel obliged to hand it over to you.
Wear your favorite “Free Tibet” t-shirt, unless you want some unwanted attention.
Be bamboozled if you’re not sure what to do. When in doubt, just follow the Chinese.