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Monday, 16 April 2007

Do's and Don'ts in England

This is a general list of things that you should do and shouldn't do in England. It is mostly common sense and is only a rough guidline.

It is said that the British are reserved in manners, dress and speech. We are famous for our politeness, self-discipline and especially for our sense of humour. Basic politeness (please, thank-you, excuse me) is expected.

How to greet someone English etiquette
British people are quite reserved when greeting one another. Greeting can be a bright 'Hello' 'Hi' or 'Good morning', when you arrive at work or at school. Read more here.....

Names we may call you
You may be called by many different 'affectionate' names, according to which part of the Britain you are in. Do not be offended, this is normal. For example, you may be called dear, dearie, flower, love, chick, chuck, me duck, me duckie, mate, guv, son, ma'am, madam, miss, sir, or treacle, according to your sex, age and location.

In England...

* Do stand in line:
In England we like to form orderly queues (standing in line) and wait for our turn e.g.. boarding a bus. It is usual to queue when required, and expected that you will take your correct turn and not push in front. 'Queue jumping' is frowned upon.
* Do take your hat off when you go indoors (men only)
It is impolite for men to wear hats indoors including restuarants and churches.
* Do say "Excuse Me":
If someone is blocking your way and you would like them to move say excuse me and they will move out of your way.
* Do Pay as you Go:
Pay for drinks as you order them in pubs and other types of bars.
* Do say "Please" and "Thank-you":
It is very good manners to say "please" and "thank-you". It is considered rude if you don't. Whenever You will notice in England that we say 'thank you' a lot.
* Do cover your Mouth:
When yawning or coughing always cover your mouth with your hand.
* Do Shake Hands:
When you are first introduced to someone, shake their right hand with your own right hand.
* Do say sorry:
If you accidentally bump into someone, say 'sorry'. They probably will too, even if it was your fault! This is a habit and can be seen as very amusing by an 'outsider'.
* Do Smile:
A smiling face is a welcoming face.

In England...

* Do not greet people with a kiss:
We only kiss people who are close friends and relatives.
* Avoid talking loudly in public
* It is impolite to stare at anyone in public.
Privacy is highly regarded.
* Do not pick your nose in public:
We are disgusted by this. If your nostrils need de-bugging, use a handkerchief.
* Avoid doing gestures such as backslapping and hugging
This is only done among close friends.
* Do not spit.
Spitting in the street is considered to be very bad mannered.
* Do not burp in public
You may feel better by burping loudly after eating or drinking, but other people will not! If you can not stop a burp from bursting out, then cover your mouth with your hand and say 'excuse me' afterwards.
* Do not pass wind (fart) in public
Now how can we say this politely? Let's say that you want to pass wind. What do you do? Go somewhere private and let it out. If you accidently pass wind in company say 'pardon me'.
* It is impolite speak with your mouth full of food
* Do not ask personal or intimate questions
We like our privacy. Please do not ask questions such as "How much money do you earn?" "How much do you weigh?" or "Why aren't you married?".
* It is not usual to tip in bars, although in restaurants it is normally including in the bill.

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