19 Locals Share 'Unwritten Rules' Of Their Country That Tourists Should Know Before Visiting

After the crazy two years we've had, many are itching to get out their passports again.

But as any frequent traveler knows, there's a lot of customs to keep up with. What's appropriate for one country may be offensive to another — or worse, it could even be deadly.

Here, locals are sharing unwritten rules of their country that tourists really need to know.

In India - don't wear anything too revealing.

Unsplash | Yogendra Singh

This obviously applies for women. According to this Redditor, anything above the knee in public is an instant call for people to ogle and stare. Bare leg is a big no-no.

In Vietnam - commit to crossing the road.

Unsplash | Tim Photoguy

"I know it looks scary due to the endless scooter stampede but if you just cross at a steady pace, they'll avoid you. Do not try to dodge or make sudden movements, you will get your [expletive] hit and there will be no sympathy." - u/ricehatwarrior

In Finland: don't get too close to anyone.

"Our personal space is huge," one Redditor wrote. Clearly, I've been living in the wrong country since personal space is big with me, too. This rule must've paid off during COVID-19.

In Mainland China: don't buy traditional Chinese silk clothes.

Unsplash | Maud Beauregard

"No matter how beautiful they are. Those clothes are for dead people, and that shop is a shroud shop. You have no idea how horrifying to see a foreigner wearing them and walking down the street." -u/rustyhalo93

In Southern Italy: compliment a friend's mother or grandmother on their cooking.

"Make sure you compliment her thoroughly and clearly state that you never had such an amazing meal wherever you're from (there's a reasonable chance that could actually be true)." - u/escaday

In Malaysia - it's normal for someone to ask what race you are.

"It's not meant to be offensive, just general curiosity," this Redditor wrote. Try this in America and it wouldn't go over so well.

Singapore - you can "chope" a table.

Unsplash | Freddy Castro

"Where I'm at, such as fast food restaurants and food courts there's a common practice known as 'chopeing' where one can 'chope' or reserve a table by placing a packet of tissues on the table. Tourists who have no idea of this usually take the table obliviously and gets dirty looks from the local who 'choped' the table." - u/RadioactiveNewt

In Philippines - when your friend's family offers you to have dinner with them, it's impolite to say no.

"Filipino hospitality at its essence," this Redditor wrote. You also need to accept the leftovers they give you since they don't want you to get hungry on your way home.

In Denmark: Don't stand or walk in the bike lane.

Unsplash | Nick Karvounis

"You will get yelled at and/or run over," this Redditor wrote. While it seems like common sense, far too many do this in countries all over the world.

Amsterdam - ride your bike carefully.

Unsplash | sabina fratila

Just like in Denmark, treat the bike line as sacred. At first glance, it seems there aren't any rules, but there are lots of them," this Redditor wrote. "One is not to get yourself or others killed."

In America - don't pick up babies.

Unsplash | Christian Bowen

"Anywhere. I went to costco with a few Korean foreign exchange student friends and one of them picked up a baby from the cart. The mother was looking away and when she turned back I saw the instant fear in her eyes. I told my friend to put the baby down and explained to the mom that they were foreign and its okay to touch babies in Korea." -u/dara-princess

In Japan - if you're going to stand on escalator, stand on the left side.

Unsplash | omid roshan

This is so people who want to pass can do so on the right. Surprisingly, it's the opposite side in many countries in the world.

In Korea: women are highly protected.

"For example, if you're in public with a girl you let her sit in a more 'protected' position. E.g., on the subway if there are open seats you let her sit on the end next to the barrier and you sit on her other side to block her from the strangers." - u/selery

In Thailand: people will probably comment on your weight.

Unsplash | Elijah M. Henderson

This is not to be offensive, as this Redditor explained. It's just how they are; they comment on how skinny or fat a person has gotten when they haven't seen them in some time.

In Norway - don't do small talk.

Unsplash | Aleksey Malinovski

"Don't talk to anyone in public. Only approach people for conversations if they are receptionists or something similar. It's not for your security or anything, but it freaks us the hell out. No one talks to strangers in Norway, unless you're hiking and above the treelines." - u/deleted

In Paris: wear pants.

Unsplash | Alicia Petresc

"I'm looking at you, Americans. If you wear shorts, you're either a kid or a skateboarder, or you're at the beach. Newsflash, there are no beaches in Paris." -u/deleted. Maybe it's best to visit in the winter?

In Ireland - don't try to claim you're Irish when you're not.

"Seriously, no one cares if you have an Irish great aunt twice removed, that absolutely does not make you Irish, and it's pretty insulting to claim otherwise." - u/rabbitgods

In Puerto Rico, don't say no to home-cooked food.

They find this rude since food is typically sparse for the middle-class, according to this Redditor. It's their way of saying you're welcome in their home. If you refuse, they will just nag you anyways.

In Canada: apologize, apologize, apologize.

"In Canada, if I walk into you I'll apologize... But you'd better apologize to me too, because you feel bad that you've made me feel bad because I walked into you." - u/Zheoy