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12 Chinese Travel Tips for Visiting America
Mental Floss ^ | March 21, 2014 | Therese Oneill

Posted on 03/21/2014 10:08:38 PM PDT by Slings and Arrows

China does a lot of business and trade with the United States, and so there are many websites devoted to helping business people navigate American peculiarities. Using Google to translate advice written in “simplified Han” for Chinese readers into English allows Americans a tiny, possibly imprecise peek into how the people of China view life in the United States. As always, we welcome comments and clarifications from Chinese-readings Flossers.

1. If an American Goes Silent, You’re in Trouble

Americans do not like silence. They will keep talking, so as not to abort the conversation, without a moment’s pause. If you do not make a sound for a long time, the Americans will try to get you to join in the conversation. They might ask if you are physically uncomfortable, or if you need help. However, if Americans do not agree with what you say, then there may be silence. Them not saying anything doesn’t necessarily mean that they agree with you, but that they think continuing the debate with you will not be polite. [Source]

2. They Don’t Realize How Weird it is to Just Call Them by Their First Name

Americans do not pay attention to "status," especially social status. Most Americans do not want their relationship with you to be affected by age or social standing. If you act especially respectful to them, they will be uncomfortable. Many Americans feel even "Mr.," "Mrs.," and "Miss" titles are too polite. Regardless of age, everyone likes to be called by their first names. However, if you feel bad using their first names, you can just smile at each other.

Since differences in social class are not taken seriously in the US, Americans have no hereditary family title. Instead, the Americans sometimes have occupational title. This title is different from the family title, because it is on its own, "earned" rather than handed down by the ancestors. Their career titles are most commonly that of a judge, senior government officials, military officers, doctors, professors and religious leaders.

3. They Deliberately Do Their Own Laundry

America is a "do-it-yourself" country. Americans in general, whether doctors, professors, businessmen, or lawyers, do their own cooking, laundry, shopping and other work. In fact, many Americans can afford to spend money to have cooks and drivers, but they do not do so. They prefer to enjoy a quiet family, and if the family has hired a helper, there is less sense of quiet.

When the American family eats, the food is either served from a central dish, or the host or hostess gives out food to the guests. Most families do not have a waiter, the cook is usually the wife, and the husband makes cocktails.

4. They Don’t Know Anything about China but Don’t Let It Bother You

You may encounter some Americans who know little about your country. If there is such a case, please tolerate them. Unfortunately, very few Americans are schooled on the culture and customs of other countries. America spans from one ocean to another, and all the other countries are far away. As a result, Americans are not too familiar with the cultures and different ways of working in other countries.

See Also: 11 French Travel Tips for Visiting America

5. Stop Everything, Listen up, and No Interrupting

Americans like eloquent, witty conversations. Although American society is filled with an atmosphere of informality, they expect a different attitude when listening to someone speak. The American generally wants the listener to stop everything at hand and listen to him.

Americans do not like to be interrupted when speaking; the best guests have the best ears. Americans also allow others to criticize the United States; a host often asks what the guests think of the United States, and he would be happy to exchange views. [Source]

6. Don’t Get Too Close. They Might Knock You Over With Their Constant Gestures

When two men talk, a distance of 1.2 m apart is appropriate, otherwise it will make the listener uneasy. When a group of people participate in the conversation, you usually have to know one of the people to join. But at a party or other informal social occasion, just say "I can attend?" Slightly introduce yourself, and you can participate in the conversation.

For conversations, a distance of more than 50 cm must be maintained. If you have to move closer, or must sit next to someone closely, get the consent of the other party.

Americans like to use gestures. To ask you to answer the phone, they will make a phone gesture. They will call the waiter with a check writing gesture. Also, Americans do not give each other business cards as a matter of course; only when the cards are needed to facilitate future contact.

7. Handshakes: You’ll probably need a cheat sheet

After a brief introduction, exchange a firm handshake, so Americans will think you are frank and sincere. In business cases, the U.S. woman will take the initiative to reach out to the man. Women generally do not shake hands with each other. If the Miss doesn’t offer a handshake, the men should nod or bow. And handshakes with a Miss are not too tight. Gloves before shaking hands should be taken off, and if it is too late to take them off, you should apologize. A farewell does not have handshakes. You wave your hand to say “goodbye!”

8. If Their Haircut is Ugly, Make Your Eyes Bright and Say, “Cute!”

Always smile when you meet acquaintances. Your tone when speaking should be sincere, you should have a generous attitude when someone greets you, and speak as concisely as possible. Multi-praise each other. Your eyes should get a little brighter when someone changes a hairstyle, or when you see other people's photos. There is a good time to praise. If the changes or photos are bad, find another way to appear pleasant, such as saying "Cute!"

See Also: 10 Japanese Travel Tips for Visiting America

9. You May Not Fondle Furnishings

Guests cannot come early, it is rude. You may be late 5-10 minutes. If you are the host, you cannot wear pajamas at night to receive guests. You are not free to fondle furnishings or decorations and you cannot inquire about prices.

10. Shorts + High Heels = Call Girl

Americans dress casual and wear a variety of clothing in public places. Most of the time they like to wear T-shirts, jackets, jeans, sweatshirts, sneakers. They dress exquisitely clean. Men's pants do not expose their underpants, woman dresses cannot expose their petticoat. Women should wear stockings with a nice skirt. Not shorts with high heels, otherwise they will be mistaken for call girls. Painted eyebrows and thick lipstick is another sign. However, anyone can wear a vest or pajamas in public. [Source]

11. Show Humility to Ladies—They’re In Charge

In public, the Americans show particular respect for women. Everywhere is “Ladies First.” In social situations, men must show humility to ladies. Men must walk on the outside of the sidewalk, let the woman sit first, open the door for a woman, move out of the way on the stairs or in the elevator to let the woman advance, let women order first at a meal, and let the woman get up to leave first. And when you greet a woman, you must stand up.

12. You’re Doing a Good Job in Your Own Way

Americans' ancestors came from all over the world, so in the United States there are no officially "recognized" social customs. Therefore, when you travel to the United States and want to do something according to the customs of your own country, do not feel embarrassed or that something is wrong. While Americans are informal, if you want to dress formal in a social situation, people will think you are doing a good job in your own way. People will accept.



TOPICS: Humor; Travel
KEYWORDS: napl
According to one commenter at the source link, these tips are from Taiwan and not the PRC.
1 posted on 03/21/2014 10:08:38 PM PDT by Slings and Arrows
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To: Slings and Arrows; MeekOneGOP; Conspiracy Guy; DocRock; King Prout; Darksheare; OSHA; ...


2 posted on 03/21/2014 10:09:37 PM PDT by Slings and Arrows (Richard Warman censors free speech.)
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To: Slings and Arrows

Nice chain gun...


3 posted on 03/21/2014 10:21:09 PM PDT by Army Air Corps (Four Fried Chickens and a Coke)
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To: Slings and Arrows
i for one, shall not fondle the furnishings;
to grope is a different matter, all together.

4 posted on 03/21/2014 10:34:12 PM PDT by skinkinthegrass (The end move in politics is always to pick up a gun..0'Caligula / 0'Reid / 0'Pelosi)
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To: Slings and Arrows
I think this is a good summary, and the opposite is true on a lot of these items when we go to China. For instance, business cards are very important there. Handing out business cards when people meet is very common. If someone hands them a business card, they will accept it with both hands, and read it thoughtfully for about 15 seconds at least. This is a sign of respect. If a Chinese person hands you a card, do the same. Even if you can't read it because it is in Chinese, they will respect you for pretending.

Any time any Chinese gives you something, it is respectful to accept it with two hands. Taking something with one hand is considered sloppy.

5 posted on 03/21/2014 10:52:46 PM PDT by Vince Ferrer
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To: Slings and Arrows

I like the panda! He’s even smiling!


6 posted on 03/21/2014 10:59:06 PM PDT by Gefn (All good kitties go to the Rainbow Bridge; their humans can't stop crying)
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To: Slings and Arrows

I agree with number 2. I dislike being called by my first name by people I do not know, or are not close with.


7 posted on 03/21/2014 11:03:57 PM PDT by BigCinBigD (...Was that okay?)
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To: Slings and Arrows

13. Pets are friends, not food.


8 posted on 03/21/2014 11:22:54 PM PDT by RichInOC (No! BAD Rich! (What'd I say?))
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To: Gefn

If had a weapon like that I’d smile too.


9 posted on 03/21/2014 11:29:25 PM PDT by Slings and Arrows (Richard Warman censors free speech.)
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To: BigCinBigD

Agreed.


10 posted on 03/21/2014 11:31:09 PM PDT by Slings and Arrows (Richard Warman censors free speech.)
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To: RichInOC

> 13. Pets are friends, not food.

Important!


11 posted on 03/21/2014 11:32:27 PM PDT by Slings and Arrows (Richard Warman censors free speech.)
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To: RichInOC
13. Pets are friends, not food.


12 posted on 03/21/2014 11:36:03 PM PDT by Veggie Todd (The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants. TJ)
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To: Slings and Arrows

13. Their leader is an effeminate drug user that wears denim pants made for women. He likes men. His ‘wife’ is a beast with a large rear end. She is known for eating aborted fetuses left on her doorstep.


13 posted on 03/22/2014 12:06:06 AM PDT by Captainpaintball
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To: Captainpaintball

They needn’t worry - if Zer0 meets any Chinese he’ll just try to borrow money from them.


14 posted on 03/22/2014 12:22:29 AM PDT by Slings and Arrows (Richard Warman censors free speech.)
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To: Slings and Arrows

“...the best guests have the best ears.”

Good advice for anyone.


15 posted on 03/22/2014 4:15:37 AM PDT by mrs. a (It's a short life but a merry one...)
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To: Slings and Arrows

“You are not free to fondle furnishings or decorations and you cannot inquire about prices.”

So, in China, house guests go about the joint handling furnishings and decorations and acting like they’re at a garage sale?


16 posted on 03/22/2014 5:14:55 AM PDT by FAA
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To: mrs. a

Very true.


17 posted on 03/22/2014 5:47:13 AM PDT by Slings and Arrows (Richard Warman censors free speech.)
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To: FAA

Good question.


18 posted on 03/22/2014 5:49:07 AM PDT by Slings and Arrows (Richard Warman censors free speech.)
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To: Slings and Arrows
 In fact, many Americans can afford to spend money to have cooks and drivers, but they do not do so. They prefer to enjoy a quiet family, and if the family has hired a helper, there is less sense of quiet.

Interesting observation. Most of the other comments are either obvious or silly, but this one seems to show deeper comprehension of us. I remember one time Hannity was talking about people running into him shopping for groceries being surprised that he does that himself.

19 posted on 03/22/2014 6:24:16 AM PDT by KarlInOhio (Republican amnesty supporters don't care whether their own homes are called mansions or haciendas.)
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To: KarlInOhio
In fact, many Americans can afford to spend money to have cooks and drivers, but they do not do so. They prefer to enjoy a quiet family, and if the family has hired a helper, there is less sense of quiet.
Interesting observation. Most of the other comments are either obvious or silly, but this one seems to show deeper comprehension of us.

I worked in Kuwait before the Gulf War and was talking with a well-to-do female Pakistani computer operator during lunch. In passing I mentioned that I change the oil in my car every 3,000 miles. She looked horrified and almost recoiled. "You do your OWN work? We have people to do that." I had to explain to her about "Do It Yourself". It evidently was quite unique and a shocking concept.

20 posted on 03/22/2014 8:50:16 AM PDT by Oatka (This is America. Assimilate or evaporate.)
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To: Oatka

I have had conversations with Chinese and Indians about the fact that I would like to build a strawbale house for myself. It blows their minds that I would want to do that, as building one’s own house is a sign of deep poverty to them.


21 posted on 03/22/2014 10:07:03 AM PDT by Vince Ferrer
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To: KarlInOhio
Most of the other comments are either obvious or silly,

To someone living within our culture, perhaps. To an outsider, not necessarily.

22 posted on 03/22/2014 10:23:20 AM PDT by Slings and Arrows (Richard Warman censors free speech.)
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To: Slings and Arrows

Bump


23 posted on 03/22/2014 1:04:53 PM PDT by dangerdoc (pWestboro Bank you should be forced to make the same decision I did even if I know I'm right.)
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To: Slings and Arrows

Pandas: Eats, shoots and leaves.


24 posted on 03/23/2014 4:36:24 PM PDT by Redcitizen (When a zombie apocalypse starts, Chuck Norris doesn't try to survive. The zombies do.)
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To: Oatka
I worked in Kuwait before the Gulf War and was talking with a well-to-do female Pakistani computer operator during lunch. In passing I mentioned that I change the oil in my car every 3,000 miles. She looked horrified and almost recoiled. "You do your OWN work? We have people to do that." I had to explain to her about "Do It Yourself". It evidently was quite unique and a shocking concept.
My wife is Chinese and she's used to it, but her friends are stumped that I do most all the work around here myself. I explain to them I don't trust most of the mechanics around here and prefer to do it myself. I skip the saving money part...
25 posted on 03/24/2014 4:37:54 PM PDT by Aut Pax Aut Bellum (Where are we going from here?)
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To: FAA

My dad was in northern scandinavia visiting a relative that was a reindeer herder. He asked how many reindeer he had. The relative replied “I will tell you if you tell me how much money you have in your bank!” My dad laughed, the relative laughed, and they carried on.


26 posted on 03/24/2014 4:47:45 PM PDT by 21twelve (http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/2185147/posts 2013 is 1933 REBORN)
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