Customs you should observe while in Vietnam

Customs that foreigners should observe while in Vietnam

When travelling to Vietnam, it is important to be aware of the customs that should be observed. There are some things that foreigners should do – as well as some things they should avoid doing.A Vietnamese local enjoying a bowl of food with a foreigner

For starters, on your trip to Vietnam, it is respectful to dress modestly. This means wearing appropriate clothing that covers your knees and shoulders. It is also best to remove your shoes before entering someone’s home, as this is a polite gesture. 

Another important custom to remember is that you should never point your feet at someone, especially when they are sitting down. This is considered very disrespectful. Additionally, you should not touch someone’s head, as this is also considered a sign of disrespect. (Just keep in mind that this is quite an old rule and isn’t as widely practiced in modern times – but is still good to consider when you’re around the elderly or very important or esteemed guests.)Vietnamese locals sitting on a bench while chatting with another local

There are a few other things that you should take care to avoid while in Vietnam. Firstly, it is important not to discuss politics or religion openly. These are sensitive topics that should be avoided when interacting with locals. Additionally, it is generally not advisable to take photographs of people without their permission.

By following these simple customs while in Vietnam, you will avoid any potential cultural faux pas and ensure that you have a respectful and enjoyable experience during your time in this fascinating country.

How to be polite in Vietnam

As well as avoiding rude and disrespectful behaviours in Vietnam, there are also some gestures that are considered polite by the locals. When visiting someone’s home, it is customary to bring a small gift such as flowers, chocolates, or fruit. (Remember – you should also take your shoes off when entering the home!)A Vietnamese local walking though a farm with a carrying pole on their shoulder

When travelling around Vietnam, shorts and skirts should ideally be no shorter than knee-length, and tops should cover the shoulders. This is an especially important rule when you are visiting sacred sites, such as temples.

Contrary to countries such as America, tipping is not customary in Vietnam, so it is not necessary to tip waiters or taxi drivers. However, if you feel that the service was exceptional, then a small tip of 5-10% is always appreciated.

Finally, remember to be respectful of the local culture and customs. Be polite and humble when interacting with locals – and try to learn a few words in Vietnamese! Learning just a few simple greetings can really make the world of difference to them, as it shows that you are interested in their culture and open-minded. To get you started, Xin Chào (pronounced ‘sin chow’) means hello, and Cảm Ơn (pronounced ‘gam un’) means thank you. Many other simple yet essential phrases can be found through a quick Google search.

Vietnamese cultural traditions and beliefs – and how to respect them

When travelling to Vietnam, it is important to be aware of the cultural traditions and beliefs that are unique to the country. The Vietnamese people have a strong sense of family and community, and foreigners should respect this by not interfering in personal or family matters. As a reminder, it is also important to be respectful when discussing politics, as the country is still recovering from a long period of war.

Many traditional ceremonies and holidays are celebrated in Vietnam, and foreigners should try their best to participate or at least observe them respectfully. Some of the most important ones include Tết (New Year), Lễ hội Độc lập (Independence Day), and Lễ Thương Binh – Liệt sĩ (Veterans’ Day). There are quite a few festivities and celebrations that happen around these events.

The Vietnamese people are known for their warm hospitality, and foreigners are often greeted with a traditional bow. It is important to accept any offers of food or drink that are made, as refusing them could be considered quite rude. Of course, if you do not want any food, it is fine to politely decline after at least trying it. There are plenty of tasty Vietnamese dishes, ranging from pho (broth, fresh noodles, and herbs with chicken or beef), cha ca (fish with herbs and broth), banh xeo (a crispy crepe with pork, bean sprouts, and shrimp), and many more. As an additional benefit, dishes such as pho are usually quite cheap too!

Overall, during your trip to Vietnam, it is important to be respectful of the customs and traditions of the country. By doing so, you will ensure a positive and rewarding experience for yourself and everyone involved.

2022-07-27T14:36:45+00:00