Chinese Customs and Superstitions to Keep in Mind During Your Visit

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Senior Miao Woman with Geese, in China
Senior Miao Woman with Geese, in China Geese are sometimes used instead of guard dogs

China is a treat for people who would love to visit a country which will give them a chance to see grassland, desert, mountains, lakes and rivers all in one magnificent country. Its capital, Beijing, has modern architecture and there are historic sites (Forbidden City palace complex and Tiananmen Square and the Great Wall of China) which leave tourists awe-stricken. But while you are there, you must be aware of few Chinese customs.

Visiting China and do not know you’re do’s and don’ts? Here is what you should know when you are planning to visit China:

Chinese Customs

1. Bow when you greet. The lower the bow, the more the respect.

2. Take gifts when visiting people (wine, tea or candy are mostly given)

3. They will refuse a gift numerous times before they actually accept it! Don’t feel offended by this.

4. They tend to fill your tea cups again and again! This is thanked by tapping the table.

Chinese tea ceremony tray - chinese customs
Chinese tea ceremony

5. Burping loudly is good! It is a compliment to the chef.

6. Spitting is considered normal! Even on public transport.

7. Geese are used instead of guard dogs in some places. Don’t be surprised if you see this and say something that will get you embarrassed!

8. Absolutely no pointing! Very rude and can get you into major trouble.

9. If someone compliments you feel free to not accept it immediately as that will be seen as you being self-obsessed and pompous. You are allowed to refuse to take it.

10. Tipping isn’t considered polite.

11. You may find people sleeping on the streets. It doesn’t mean something weird is happening as this is common practice in China.

12. The local people tend to ask tourists to pose in pictures with them. No, this isn’t anything to be freaked about or creepy. It is very common for them.

13. You might see people wearing full face masks while swimming. Do not stare, you are not seeing things. It actually exists and is absolutely normal! It is worn to maintain the complexion.

14. The food is totally weird for someone who has never ever come across a proper Chinese buffet. They serve things like frog lungs, cow stomach, fish eyes etc. Do not make a face and try taking a bite as it will be appreciated. No overreacting!

Chinese food market with a selection of scorpions and other insects - chinese customs
Chinese food market

15. You might want to learn a few sentences in their language as it buys you some sympathy. They will go easy on you when you are shopping and trying to get a good deal!

Some Chinese Superstitions

  • Black and white colour presents are considered as a symbol of Death!
  • One can’t give 4 presents as it is also considered bad luck.
  • Odd numbers are considered unlucky.
  • Never given Chinese people clocks as that symbolises death and funerals.
  • Do not place chopsticks upright in a bowl, ever.

Hope this helps you not make a fool out of yourself when you visit China!

Read more: Keep some of these travel etiquettes in mind before your next trip!

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