Surprising Customs Around the World

One thing that set humans apart from any living creature on earth is its tendency to develop different traditions and customs in different regions where they live. Humans are so good at creating and following customs that today you have thousands of unique cultures around the world. While some culture may look normal to you, others may make you raise your eyebrows.

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Nigeria – Kneeling Greeting

Members of the Yoruba community in Nigeria have some unique greeting rituals. This is mainly used to show respect towards the elders. When an elder member of the community is seen, the younger people drop to their knees as a sign of respect and greeting. This is one specific custom that differentiates the Yoruba ethnic group from the others in Nigeria.

U.S – Tipping

There are numerous odd customs in the U.S and one of them is the unique tipping custom. Unlike other countries where just a small value or nothing at all is tipped when your food is great, in the US, it is considered as mandatory to give a tip when you are satisfied with your food. Due to the low legal wages that waiters receive there, they rely a lot on this form of gratuity to round up their money.

Japan – Slurping

In most western countries, eating food noisily is considered as being rude and strict table etiquette about table manners are followed. However, in Japan, consuming food while making the slurping sound has a completely different meaning. Instead of consuming noodles that are rolled around a folk or spoon, Japanese people slurp them up to show that they are enjoying it. It is also said to bring in more of the noodles’ flavour.

Malaysia – Thumb Pointing

If you point at anyone with your index finger, it can be considered as rude and abrasive in various countries. Pointing your finger figuratively or literally isn’t the best thing you could do in most culture, especially in Indonesia and Malaysia. In these countries, the hand gesture is highly offensive. To remediate to this situation, people there gestures with their thumbs to show you something. In many countries, you can only point at objects and not humans.

Greece – Bride Spitting

In Greek culture, spitting is considered as a kind of lucky charm and it is supposedly done to ward off any evil spirit. This unique practice of spitting on the bride was made popular worldwide thank to the movie My Big Fat Greek Wedding that was released in 2002. Today, people do not spit on the newlyweds, instead they just do a symbolistic action of spitting. This is not only done at wedding but also at other special occasions such as baptisms.

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