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What not to do in Japan and in Kobe, of course

Kobe Insights:
What Not to Do in Japan's Charming City.

Exploring the rich cultural tapestry of Japan is a captivating journey filled with unique customs and traditions. To fully immerse yourself in this enriching experience, it's crucial to understand and respect the cultural nuances that shape everyday interactions. Here, we present a comprehensive guide to navigating the social landscape of Japan, shedding light on essential behaviors to observe and avoid. By embracing these insights, you'll not only deepen your appreciation for Japanese culture but also ensure a harmonious and respectful journey throughout your travels in this fascinating country.


Avoid Speaking Loudly in Public Places. In Japan, silence and courtesy are highly valued. Speaking loudly on trains or in public places can be seen as rude.

Refrain from Using Your Mobile Phone on the Train. Similar to the previous point, using your mobile phone for calls on the train is considered impolite.

Don't Eat While Walking. Eating while walking on the street is uncommon in Japan and may be considered disrespectful.

Don't Tip. Unlike many Western countries, tipping is considered offensive in Japan. It's assumed that service is included in the price.

Don't Enter the Bath Without Washing First. In onsens (hot springs) and Japanese homes, you should wash yourself before entering the bath. The bath is for relaxing, not for washing.

Avoid Pointing with Chopsticks or Passing Food with Them. This has funeral connotations in Japan, and doing so is highly disrespectful.

Don't Forget to Take Off Your Shoes. In many homes, temples, and traditional accommodations, it's expected that you remove your shoes before entering.

Avoid Cutting in Line or Pushing in. Respecting the order in lines and queuing is fundamental in Japan. Not doing so can cause great annoyance.

Don't Photograph People or Private Properties Without Permission. As in many places, taking photos without consent is disrespectful.

Don't Smoke on the Street Except in Designated Areas. In many Japanese cities, smoking on the street is prohibited except in designated areas.

Don't Get in a Taxi by Opening the Door. Taxis have automatic doors controlled by the driver. Wait for the driver to open the door before entering or exiting.

Don't Touch People Without Permission. Even handshakes are not common in Japan, and people usually bow instead of touching.

Avoid Coughing or Blowing Your Nose in Public. If you need to do so, it's best to use a tissue and move away from people if possible.

Don't Litter in Public. Trash bins are scarce, so hold onto your garbage until you find an appropriate place to dispose of it.

Avoid Public Arguments or Conflicts. Maintaining harmony is valued in Japanese society, so avoid public arguments or open conflicts.

Being aware of these norms and customs will help you show respect towards the culture and people you encounter during your travels in Japan.

The best rule of thumb is to observe how locals behave and follow their example.


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