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Konference cruise DFDS

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Cruise & Business – 3 dages konferencetur med DFDS

• Buskørsel Sjælland - København t/r med 4-stjernet turistbus • ‘Start mødet i bussen’-koncept med bl.a. PowerPoint om bord • Bussen er tilrådighed under besøget i Oslo, til etc. sightseeing, virksomhedsbesøg mv. • 2-døgns konferenceCruise København - Oslo tur/retur • Standard indvendig 2-sengs kahyt tur/retur • 2 x morgenmadsbuffet • 1 x dinnerbuffet inkl 1 øl/glas vin/vand • 1 x 3-retters menu • 2 x konferencerum (á 3 timer) med standard AV-udstyr, internetadgang, frugt samt kaffe og te

Prisidé fra kr. 3.695,- pr. person (ved min. 20 personer)

HOLD JERES MØDER OG KONFERENCER PÅ HAVET ? Ønsker I at afholde et møde eller en konference, der er lidt ud over det sædvanlige? Så er Oslobåden et spændende alternativ til de traditionelle konferencecentre. Her får I ikke blot skønne rammer til både faglige og sociale aktiviteter. I får også en unik og uforglemmelig oplevelse sammen med kollegaerne. På havet brydes hverdagens rutiner, og frisk luft og bølgeskvulp kan fremme kreativiteten, ideerne og udviklingen af nye løsninger. De bedste resultater skabes på havet. Hold møder og konferencer på Oslobåden og få:

  • Moderne møde- og konferencelokaler med havudsigt
  • Gode rammer til både faglige og sociale aktiviteter
  • Et bredt udvalg af restauranter med velsmagende menuer og udsøgte vine
  • 6 timer i Oslo
  • En unik og uforglemmelig oplevelse sammen med kollegaerne

PEARL SEAWAYS Pearl Seaways (tidligere MS Pearl of Scandinavia) blev bygget i 1989. I 2001 købte og ombyggede DFDS skibet og indsatte det på ruten København-Oslo. I 2011 blev der bygget kasino. Og i januar 2014 blev skibet opgraderet og fik bl.a. flere nye luksus kahytter, en ny restaurant og natklubben Columbus Club blev renoveret. Konferencefaciliteterne blev også opgraderet. CROWN SEAWAYS Dette store cruiseskib har sejlet i de skandinaviske vande siden 1994. Crown Seaways (tidligere Crown of Scandinavia) har plads til 1.790 passagerer og 450 biler. Crown Seaways blev opgraderet i marts 2014 og fik bl.a. ombygget restauranterne og natklubben, fik en ny restaurant og bedre konferencefaciliteter. Bubble Zone med pool og jacuzzi. Velkommen om bord på DFDS' skibe. Vores skibe byder på et helt unikt maritimt miljø, hvor der både er plads til afslapning og fornøjelse. Om bord på vores skibe åbner sig en helt ny verden i de maritime rammer med en strålende havudsigt. Skibene har flere forskellige typer kahytter, restauranter, barer, caféer? og nogle har endda swimmingpool og kasino. Vi er stolte over de store flotte skibe, der hver dag bringer mange glade passagerer frem til deres feriemål. Velkommen om bord!

Konference cruise DFDS

dfds konference cruise

Homes with impressive sports facilities

Properties with tennis and basketball courts to pools and even a football pitch at the doorstep


DFDS has today entered into an agreement to divest the Oslo-Frederikshavn-Copenhagen (OFC) cruise ferry route to Gotlandsbolaget. Completion of the agreement is expected in October 2024.

The OFC route annually carries more than 700,000 passengers between Norway and Denmark. The route deploys two cruise ferries and has just over 800 sea- and land-based employees. Revenue in 2023 was DKK 0.9bn equal to 3% of the DFDS Group’s total revenue.

“It is with a heavy heart that we have found a new home for the Oslo route as it has been a part of DFDS since our foundation in 1866 and in addition a cherished public institution in Denmark and Norway. DFDS is however today a transport and logistics company bridging Europe and the route deserves a new owner that can continue to invest in and develop the great maritime experience the route offers for passengers”, says Torben Carlsen, CEO of DFDS.

The divestment reflects DFDS’ strategic focus on providing transport and logistics services using combinations of ferry, road, and rail. Transporting passengers by ferry alongside freight is a core activity for DFDS on the Baltic Sea, between the Netherlands and the UK, on the Channel, and on the Strait of Gibraltar.

The OFC route is first and foremost a passenger route (cruise ferry) given the route’s limited freight capacity and the market size for freight ferry services between the ports of the route. In addition, the OFC route’s primary customer segment is leisure, or mini cruise, passengers which sets it apart from the focus on passenger transport throughout the rest of DFDS’ route network.

The sale of OFC includes the two ferries deployed on the route (built in 1989 and 1994, respectively), terminal and port agreements as well as just over 800 employees in route operations and support functions. DFDS will after completion of the agreement provide certain support services to the buyer for an agreed and limited period.

The sales price of the OFC routes is approximately DKK 400m. The transaction is not expected to result in any material income statement impact in 2024.

The completion of the transaction is subject to customary closing conditions but no regulatory approval conditions apply.

Torben Carlsen, CEO +45 33 42 32 01

Søren Brøndholt Nielsen, IR +45 33 42 33 59

Dennis Kjærsgaard Sørensen, Media +45 42 30 38 47

We operate a transport network in and around Europe with an annual revenue of DKK 28bn and 14,000 full-time employees.

We move goods in trailers by ferry, road & rail, and we offer complementary and related transport and logistics solutions.

We also move car and foot passengers on short sea and overnight ferry routes.

DFDS was founded in 1866 and headquartered and listed in Copenhagen.

This information is subject to the disclosure requirements pursuant to Section 5-12 the Norwegian Securities Trading Act


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Tourist Guide to Japanese Etiquettes: Understanding Cultural Rules and Traditions

Tourist Guide to Japanese Etiquettes

Welcome to our detailed guide on Japanese culture and etiquette. As a country steeped in tradition and custom, Japan presents an array of unique experiences for its visitors. Navigating these intricacies can initially seem daunting, which is why we, at Activity Japan, have crafted this comprehensive resource. From business norms to social conventions, this guide aims to equip you with essential knowledge to enrich your travel experience in Japan. So, let's delve into this fascinating cultural exploration.

Understanding Japanese Etiquette: A Deeper Dive into Cultural Rules and Traditions

Japanese etiquette, or 'saho,' goes beyond simple rules and formalities. It's an integral part of their society, woven into the fabric of everyday life and steeped in centuries of tradition. The significance of 'omotenashi,' or Japanese hospitality, cannot be overstated. A word without an exact translation, 'omotenashi' is all about wholeheartedly serving guests without expectation of reward. It symbolizes Japan's deep-rooted belief in respect, politeness, and selflessness. Whether you're visiting a traditional inn, dining in a local restaurant, or attending a tea ceremony, you're likely to witness 'omotenashi' in action, demonstrating the warmth and graciousness of the Japanese people.

Unveiling the Intricacies of Japanese Etiquette Rules

japanese travel etiquette

When it comes to Japanese etiquette rules, there are some broad, universally accepted norms. Politeness, respect, and consideration for others are expected in all interactions. However, the key to understanding these rules is recognizing their subtleties and nuances. For instance, bowing is a standard greeting in Japan. But did you know there are different bows for different situations? The casual bow ('eshaku') of about 15 degrees is a common daily greeting, while the respectful bow ('keirei') of about 30 degrees is used when you meet someone of higher status. And then there's the deepest, most respectful bow ('saikeirei') of about 45 degrees for the most formal situations. Mastering these intricacies may take time, but it's a rewarding endeavor that offers invaluable insight into the Japanese way of life.

Japanese Restaurant and Dining Etiquette

japanese travel etiquette

If you're a foodie, Japan is nothing short of a paradise. However, to make the most of the gastronomic adventure, understanding the local dining etiquette is crucial. In a Japanese restaurant , customers are often greeted with a warm 'irasshaimase' (welcome) upon entering. Responding isn't necessary, but a smile or a nod acknowledges the greeting. When it comes to the actual dining, a few things to remember are: not to stick your chopsticks upright in a bowl of rice (it's associated with funeral rites), avoid passing food chopstick to chopstick (another funeral custom), and refrain from rubbing your chopsticks together (it's considered rude). Remembering to say 'itadakimasu' (I humbly receive) before you start eating and 'gochisosama' (thank you for the meal) when you finish not only reflects good manners but also shows respect to the chef and appreciation for the food.

Japanese Business Etiquette: A Guide for Corporate Tourists

For the corporate tourists, understanding the norms of Japanese business culture can be a gateway to successful relationships. Japanese business etiquette is built around respect, humility, and meticulous attention to detail. Punctuality is highly valued, so it's essential to be on time or early for appointments. Business card exchange or 'meishi koukan' is an important ritual. When receiving a card, accept it with both hands, read it carefully, and treat it respectfully - it's a representation of the person giving it. Do not write on it or stash it in your back pocket, as it would be considered disrespectful. Similarly, when presenting your card, ensure that it's clean and unmarked, and offer it with both hands. Remember that subtle communication, non-verbal cues, and an appreciation for silence are all part of the Japanese business communication etiquette. They might seem small, but paying attention to these details can make a big difference in your business interactions in Japan.

Navigating Social Situations in Japan: Gift-Giving and More

Japanese gift-giving etiquette

Engaging in social activities in Japan can be an enriching experience, especially when you're aware of the etiquette involved. One significant aspect is the art of gift-giving. In Japan, the act of giving and receiving gifts, or 'omiyage', is a practice deeply rooted in tradition. It's customary to bring a gift when visiting someone's home. Gifts should be wrapped meticulously, and it's typical to downplay the gift when presenting it. Refusing a gift once or twice before accepting it is also considered polite, showing that you don't want to impose.

However, Japanese etiquette isn't just about grand gestures; it's also about subtleties. Personal space is respected, and physical contact, even something as simple as a pat on the back, can make people uncomfortable. It's important to bear these norms in mind to ensure a respectful and harmonious social interaction.

Ancient Japanese Etiquette: A Peek into the Past

japanese travel etiquette

Understanding modern Japanese etiquette is incomplete without a glimpse into the ancient norms. The traditional Japanese culture, with its rituals and ceremonies, lends a fascinating perspective into how the past continues to shape the present. Many aspects of the present-day etiquette can be traced back to ancient times.

For instance, the art of bowing, which is such an integral part of modern Japanese society, has its roots in the ancient warrior culture. It was a show of peaceful intent - as it was impossible to draw the sword when bowing. The respect for nature and the practice of cleanliness also stem from Shinto beliefs that date back centuries. These rituals, which started in ancient times, have been handed down through generations and continue to be a fundamental part of Japanese life. Understanding these practices gives us a richer and more profound appreciation of the cultural norms in Japan today.

The Many Layers of Japanese Culture

Harmony and respect: the pillars of japanese work culture.

japanese travel etiquette

Delving into the Japanese work culture, you'll discover an environment that prioritizes harmony ('wa'), respect, and hierarchy. Teamwork is favored over individualism, with each member working towards the common goal of the organization. Punctuality is not just appreciated, but expected, and humility is a virtue often embodied in the workforce. Navigating this landscape of mutual respect and collaboration can significantly enhance your understanding and experience of the Japanese work scene.

An Ode to Diversity: The Japanese Food Culture

Japanese Food Culture

To truly understand Japan, one must savor its rich and diverse food culture. This culinary journey takes you beyond sushi and ramen, introducing you to a multitude of flavors, textures, and cooking techniques. From the humble 'onigiri' or rice balls, a staple on-the-go snack, to the meticulous 'kaiseki', a traditional multi-course dinner that epitomizes the Japanese concept of 'omotenashi' or hospitality. Each dish is a piece of art, with as much emphasis on the aesthetic presentation as on taste, reflecting the country's appreciation for balance and beauty.

Vibrancy in Motion: Japanese Pop Culture

A vibrant exploration of Japanese culture would be incomplete without a dive into its dynamic pop culture. 'Anime' and 'manga,' the animated series and comics that originated in Japan, are now globally recognized forms of artistic expression, with themes ranging from fantasy to social commentary. On the other hand, 'J-pop' or Japanese pop music, with its catchy tunes and innovative production, has fans around the world. This energetic and creative landscape not only entertains but also provides insights into contemporary Japanese societal trends and youth culture.

Together, these diverse aspects of Japanese culture form an intricately woven tapestry that beckons further exploration. Each thread adds depth and color, enriching our understanding of what makes Japan such a fascinating country to discover.

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And there you have it—a comprehensive look at Japanese etiquette and culture! As we've discovered, understanding the customs, traditions, and cultural nuances of Japan is not just about avoiding faux pas. It's about appreciating the profound depth and beauty of a culture steeped in centuries of tradition, history, and respect. It's about forming deeper connections with the people you meet and the places you visit. It's about transforming your visit from a typical sightseeing tour into an unforgettable, enriching cultural experience. So, as you plan your trip to this beautiful and captivating country, remember these insights and dive headfirst into the real Japan, beyond the tourist brochures. Thank you for joining us on this journey, and we hope you find your Japanese adventure as unique, heartwarming, and unforgettable as the culture itself. Safe travels, friend!

Frequently asked questions

Q what is the significance of bowing in japan.

A Bowing is a traditional form of greeting in Japan, expressing respect, gratitude, and humility. Different situations call for different bows, varying from a casual nod of the head to a deep bow from the waist, reflecting the person's status or the formality of the situation.

Q How should I behave in a Japanese restaurant?

A In a Japanese restaurant, remember not to stick your chopsticks upright in rice or pass food chopstick to chopstick. Say 'itadakimasu' before eating and 'gochisosama' after finishing. Avoid making loud noises and respect the space of others.

Q What should I know about gift-giving etiquette in Japan?

A In Japan, gift-giving is a form of communication. Gifts should be given with both hands, be carefully wrapped, and it's typical to downplay the gift when presenting. Also, it's polite to refuse a gift once or twice before accepting.

Q How is punctuality viewed in Japan?

A Punctuality is highly valued in Japan, both in professional and social settings. Arriving on time or slightly early shows respect for the other person's time and is a critical aspect of Japanese etiquette.

Q What should I be aware of in Japanese business meetings?

A In Japanese business meetings, respect for hierarchy, attention to detail, and punctuality are important. The exchange of business cards is a significant ritual, and the cards should be treated with respect. Silence is often valued over unnecessary chatter.

Q How does ancient Japanese etiquette influence modern practices?

A Many practices of ancient Japanese etiquette still influence today's norms. For instance, the art of bowing originates from the ancient warrior culture. Respect for nature and cleanliness also stems from Shinto beliefs dating back centuries.

Q What is 'omotenashi'?

A 'Omotenashi' is the Japanese concept of providing detailed service, anticipating the needs of the guest even before they arise. It reflects Japan's deep-seated values of hospitality, respect, and humility, embodying the spirit of selfless giving.

We would like to express our sincere gratitude for your continued patronage.

At our company, in order for many customers to enjoy various activities all over Japan safely and with peace of mind, the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare's " Basic Policy for Countermeasures against Coronavirus Infectious Diseases " and " Let's Avoid the Three Cs "・ Based on the " new lifestyle ", we recommend the following infectious disease countermeasures to the operator.

  • Instructors and participants keep a sufficient distance
  • Use masks as much as possible while participating
  • Ventilate frequently, avoiding closed spaces
  • Thorough hand washing and disinfection
  • Thorough disinfection of equipment
  • Health management of customers and employees, etc.

For infection prevention measures of the operating company, please refer to [Appeal points for safety] or [Notes on participating in the course ] of each operating company information at the bottom of the plan reservation page, and for details, please contact each operating company directly. Please contact us.

You can also check the following page for information on the efforts of activity companies in each region!

How to enjoy new activities in the after / with corona era

Even if you are a customer, when you continue to go out, in addition to avoiding so-called [three secrets], cough etiquette, thorough hand washing and alcohol disinfection, etc., on June 19, 2020 (Friday), Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism, sightseeing Please be aware of the [new travel etiquette ] announced by the Japan Tourism Agency, take actions to avoid the risk of infectious diseases, and enjoy activities and leisure activities safely.

Even now, there are tourist facilities and activity operators whose business hours and dates have changed. Please check the calendar status at the time of application and check the latest information with each operator even after the reservation is completed. Please check with each operator regarding whether or not there is a cancellation fee due to sudden closure of the facility, cancellation of the activity experience, etc.

In addition, Activity Japan also offers an "online experience" service where you can enjoy various activities!

[Online experience] New experience online anywhere

The "online experience" service is digital content that can be expected to create a new community by connecting customers with local and tourism businesses on a daily basis. Those who have difficulty going out due to circumstances, those who want to try but are uneasy about having a real experience suddenly, those who want to collect local information to plan future trips and stay plans, etc. Feel free to meet local instructors and guides online and enjoy a conversation while experiencing a simulated experience!

Please use it together.

Find experiences nationwide

japanese travel etiquette

Japan Life News & Opinion

13 Rules and Manners to Follow When Visiting Japan

How to avoid cultural faux pas

June 7, 2024

In the past few years, tourists in Japan have been hitting the headlines for bad behavior. YouTubers like Johnny Somali have even been arrested for nuisance actions, like trespassing and shouting offensive things at local people. Others have attempted to travel up and down the country without buying a ticket.

So, what makes a good tourist? And how do we avoid offending anyone, especially in a country that regards manners as an important cultural currency? Here’s our guide to general Japanese etiquette.

As a visitor to someone else’s country, it’s important to pay attention to what is happening around you and how the local people are behaving. Japan is no different, and sometimes the right way is literally signposted. If a sign has a picture of a mobile phone with a big cross on it, it is obvious what that means. You needn’t speak the language to figure out the big picture.

“Watch what the locals do and act accordingly,” says Peter Carnell , a freelance guide and podcaster based in Nagano. “This applies to visiting any country. Many guests ask me about the rules in Japan and what to do and not to do. I tell them that as foreigners, Japanese do not expect us to know all the rules. So in that regard, not to worry too much. But there are a couple of basic ones to respect.”

japanese travel etiquette

Japanese Public Transport Manners

There are several unspoken (and spoken) rules while riding Japanese trains.

  • Don’t answer phone calls. Your voice naturally rises when you’re on the phone. Hearing someone chatting loudly is rather annoying for those around.
  • No eating on trains. Even though you may think the smell of your tuna rice ball is fine, the people around you might not agree, especially if you drop pieces on the floor.
  • Don’t spread out. Sit with your legs close together so that you don’t touch the person next to you. Put your bag on your lap or on the overhead shelf. Putting it on the floor is a hazard and takes up space, and Japanese trains and buses can get very crowded.
  • Talk quietly. You are in a confined space and your voice will carry.

Table and Restaurant Manners

There are various ways to respect the local customs.

  • No tipping. Even though the customer service in Japan is considered among the best in the world, it doesn’t come at an extra cost.
  • Clear up after yourself. Carnell explains: “Try to leave your table in an orderly fashion for staff to handle.”
  • Use your chopsticks properly. Namely: don’t pass food with your chopsticks and don’t leave your chopsticks straight up in your bowl. These points are considered bad manners as they evoke funeral customs.

japanese travel etiquette

Shrine and Temple Manners

Shrines are holy places, so it is important to show respect when visiting them.

  • Look out for places you are allowed to walk. They should be signposted. If you aren’t sure, don’t do it.
  • Dress to impress (respectfully). In Japan, people don’t tend to show their shoulders, and if you do this in a shrine setting you may encounter more people staring at you than you would when out on the street.
  • Be quiet. Shrines are calm places, so respect that.

japanese travel etiquette

General Manners for Out and About

Even just walking can sometimes cause problems. Imagine rushing to work, you’ve got a brisk pace on and suddenly your way ahead is blocked by a group of people with shopping bags taking pictures. Get out of the way, people.

According to Carnell, Japanese people tend to “avoid open conflict,” so tourists should be mindful of that and try to avoid complaining unless absolutely necessary.

  • Littering. Don’t do it. In Japan and especially Tokyo, trash cans are limited. Many Japanese people take their garbage home. Behave like a local and bag it up, ready to deposit with your other trash when you return, or into a convenience store trash can if you bought the items at that shop.
  • Photographs. We understand that you may want to photograph everything you see but resist the urge if you aren’t sure that it’s OK. This applies to people too. Yes, that little person riding the bike carrying balloons and wearing a tiger mask looks very photogenic, but they may not want to be photographed. Think of religious sites. Be considerate.
  • Respect for nature. There have been instances of tourists damaging cherry blossom flowers and branches, a definite faux pas.

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  • Japanese Etiquette 101: Eleven Things to Keep in Mind Before Travelling to Japan

Japan has a long-entrenched reputation of being a rule-following country, with an intricate system of customs and social mores that can often feel inscrutable to international travellers. Whether it’s how to dress, what side of the escalator to walk on, or where you place your chopsticks, there are several Japanese customs that have been talked about at length – sometimes reaching varying conclusions.  

As a foreign tourist, locals do not necessarily expect you to know all the intricacies and nuances of Japanese culture. Nonetheless, there are some common practices to keep in mind in order to navigate Japanese society as seamlessly as possible. Though in many senses the tip of an iceberg, below we’ve compiled a concise list of 11 essentials for those looking to enjoy Japan, while respecting the customs and culture.

1) PDA (Public Displays of Affection) & Greetings

japanese travel etiquette

Handshakes, high-fives, hugs, and certainly kisses are far less common as a form of greeting in Japan. Though certainly not frowned upon, people have different comfort levels when it comes to displays of physical affection or intimacy. Be mindful of others’ body language, and try to meet them where they are at. If you’re unsure of someone’s comfort level, simply bowing is usually the safest bet.

2) Mind the Volume

japanese travel etiquette

All of the noise you will encounter Japanese cityscapes - from the din of arcades and pachinko parlours, to supermarket jingles, to campaign trucks blasting slogans - may lead you to believe that Japan is a very loud country. However, on an interpersonal level, Japan tends to be rather soft-spoken. 

In addition to the obvious places such as museums, galleries, and libraries, this is especially true in settings such restaurants, and on public transit. These are often seen as places of respite on either end of the workday, where patrons are having their own conversations, or simply having a moment of contemplation for themselves. Chatting with friends is of course welcome, but try to be mindful of when things are getting a little too boisterous. This applies likewise to phone calls, with most public transport banning phone conversation outright.

3) Mask Up (Situationally)

japanese travel etiquette

Japan, along with other East Asian countries, has a longstanding tradition of masking, even prior to COVID. Whether during flu season, or on a case-by-case basis for those displaying moderate cold symptoms, masking has been encouraged as pro-social action in Japan for over 100 years.

You will find that precautionary masking is still the norm in a post-pandemic Japan. Although there is understanding that this is a personal choice, it tends to leave a better impression to put on a mask in crowded & confined areas if you are displaying any cold-like symptoms. 

4) Wait to be Seated

japanese travel etiquette

When in doubt, chances are there’s a line. Unlike some restaurants in North America, in Japan it is standard to make your presence known before taking a seat. Some popular restaurants such as sushi trains may even require you to take a number from a machine (these tend to be bigger chains, where the interface is multilingual).

In general, customer service in Japan is designed to be as efficient as possible for all parties involved, which means sparing servers the observation and frequent check-ins that are commonly expected at North American restaurants. Conversely, waitstaff can generally be hailed by either a call button, or simply blurting out “Sumimasen!” (Excuse me!), with a directness that some North Americans may find surprising. 

5) (The Customer is God, but…) What You See is What You Get

japanese travel etiquette

Japan enjoys a reputation for its stellar hospitality industry – the Japanese counterpart to “the customer is always right” taking it a step above, to “the customer is God”. This is why many are surprised to learn how rigid Japanese restaurants can be when it comes to seemingly simple modifications! In addition to prioritizing the efficiency mentioned previously, this is also a matter of quality control - whether artisans or fast-food workers, chefs have been trained to prepare dishes a certain way – and though it may seem extreme, some may fear that any deviance could compromise the food’s ideal form.

There are of course, some exceptions to the rule. Generally, if your modification is due to an allergy, staff will be certain to accommodate it (or else direct you to somewhere else that can). Notifying restaurants of any dietary restrictions in advance will spare staff the element of surprise, and potentially allow for a more thought-out alternative. This is especially the case with finer establishments, where chefs often relish the chance to express their skills and creativity. However, don’t be surprised if more fast-paced restaurants aren’t necessarily so accomodating. If this is enough to dissuade you from tipping, then no worries, as it is not a custom in the first place!

6) Walking and Eating … is it Really That Bad?

japanese travel etiquette

Tabearuki (or walking and eating) is a “taboo” within Japanese society which prospective visitors are often warned about.  However, those visiting the busy shopping arcades of Osaka and market districts like Shimokitazawa may be surprised to see several locals carrying snacks and coffee as they go about their day. So what gives?

In reality, it is largely situational. Avoid messy foods and lidless drinks, especially in crowded areas where you are liable to bump into others, or where others will need to swerve to avoid bumping into you. Whether amid cherry blossoms or during festivals, eating and dining outdoors is common - but even in these cases,  the general practice is to step aside from the main crowd as you enjoy your refreshments. Sidewalks tend to be wide, and smaller neighborhoods tend to have parks interspersed - if there’s no rush, why not stop and savour the moment?

7) Taking Out the Trash

japanese travel etiquette

Japan is constantly earning praise for its remarkable cleanliness, despite the abject lack of public garbage bins. Foreigners are often astounded to learn that locals, are in fact, taking it home and disposing of it themselves. Travellers who are away from their accommodation for long stretches can take comfort in the fact that most train stations and convenience stores have garbage bins (for truly upstanding social etiquette, you may consider making a small purchase when disposing of waste at the latter).

Of course, the process of waste disposal presents its own challenges – the only consistency being how complex the procedures are. Generally, most garbage bins will include slots for burnables (the majority of non-recyclable waste), non-burnables (such as glass, wire, small electronics), aluminum cans, and finally PET bottles (ie: the vast majority of plastic soft drink bottles). To score even more points, shed your PET bottle of its label using the perforated lines, and chuck the cap into the dedicated chute if available.

8) How Much to Blend In?

japanese travel etiquette

Self-conscious travellers may find themselves worrying about fashion do and do-nots when it comes to Japan. Smart casual, teeming on preppy looks that are associated with brands such as Uniqlo tend to be the default means of dress, with neutral colours such as black, white, beige and navy being especially common. With that said, there are no shortage of daring trendsetters as well, particularly in fashion-forward neighbourhoods such as Harajuku. Authenticity and originality is often admired, if not always embraced by the general public.

The one place where a more conservative style of dress may be wise in places of worship such as temples as shrines. With that aside, the best thing one can do is to be yourself, and let your character shine through in your behaviour, rather than your appearance. 

9) Bathing Etiquette – A Brief Rundown

japanese travel etiquette

In essence, the main thing to keep in mind is that showers are for cleansing, whereas baths are therapeutic and should be kept as pure as possible. This means that nothing but your meticulously cleaned, naked body should be entering the water!

Onsen (hot springs) and bath houses will have several sit-down showers upon entering the bathing area, typically equipped with stools, soap, and shampoo. Here, guests are required to get as clean as possible before entering the bath itself. Some onsen have a basin of kakeyu (water for pouring over one’s self) at the entrance, though this is largely a matter of tradition, and not a suitable replacement for a thorough shower. Those with tattoos may not be allowed entry to public baths, however, traditional ryokan will often have private baths where this policy does not apply. 

10) Photography & Drones

japanese travel etiquette

When it comes to photography, most Japanese etiquette falls under the realm of common sense. Do not take others’ photos without permission, including those in traditional attire, unless at a designated event for such purposes. Many shops and museums will also have ample signage - indicating where photography is or isn’t permitted.

Drone permissions can also be a very fraught area, with policies varying depending on the prefecture and property. In general, permission is required before flying a drone over any private property, or busy public areas. To avoid any flack, confirming with the relevant property staff or local koban is always a good way to go.

11) If you have Japanese - Use It!

japanese travel etiquette

Though it is quite easy to travel Japan without speaking the language, an effort is always appreciated, and will often be met with ample praise (regardless of actual ability). Encountering a foreign tourist who can speak Japanese of any level is seen as something of a novelty, and is often met with pleasant surprise among service staff. Japan is self-aware when it comes to the relatively limited usage of the language outside of its borders, and so showcasing this ability can be an expression of one’s appreciation and respect for the culture. Those looking to start learning, or brush up on their preexisting skills can consult JNTO’s language resources page .

  • Canada home

Please Choose Your Language

Browse the JNTO site in one of multiple languages

Proper manners and consideration towards others are highly valued in Japan, and misbehaving tourists are increasingly causing frictions. In order not to annoy or offend the locals, foreign visitors should be familiar with at least the basic rules:

  • Inside the house
  • On the streets
  • At shrines and temples
  • At restaurants
  • Table manners
  • Sitting techniques
  • Taking a bath
  • Using the toilet
  • Business cards
  • Garbage disposal
  • Giving gifts

Questions? Ask in our forum .

japanese travel etiquette

Japan dos and don'ts: etiquette tips for first-time travellers

Oct 2, 2015 • 5 min read

japanese travel etiquette

Japan is warm and welcoming to travellers, but its unique culture can be as inscrutable as it is intriguing for the first-time visitor. To help create a faux-pas-free journey, arm yourself with a few of these handy etiquette tips before your trip: from when to bow and take your shoes off, to when it’s OK to be a noisy eater and what not to do with your chopsticks.

Visitors at Sensō-ji temple, Tokyo

Meeting and greeting

Bowing Bow politely when you meet someone, thank them, or say goodbye. The depth, duration and number of bows is something non-Japanese aren’t expected to understand and visitors are unlikely to offend if they don’t do this perfectly. If a Japanese person bows to you, an incline of the head in return will usually suffice. Japanese do sometimes also shake hands, but it’s best to wait for the opposite party to offer their hand before thrusting yours forth.

Gifts Returning from a trip, the change of seasons, and moving into a new home are among the many reasons gifts might be exchanged in Japan. For visitors, it’s a great idea to bring small gifts from your home country, especially if you’ll be staying with locals, or in case you need to say ‘thank you’ to someone during your trip. The simple gesture of sharing something from your home will be greatly appreciated – think souvenir key rings, chocolate bars, and other treats only available in your country. Avoid expensive or flamboyant offerings.

Two hands good The exchanging of business or name cards is still an important part of more formal introductions in Japan. You should use two hands when giving and receiving cards. This also goes for giving and receiving gifts.

Ladies bowing

Footwear rules

Shoes off If a building has a sunken-foyer entrance (called a genkan ), and there are rows or shelves of footwear by the door, it’s a clear sign you’re expected to remove your shoes. You’ll always have to remove footwear when entering a private home, traditional accommodation ( minshuku or ryokan ), and temple halls. Some restaurants with tatami (woven straw matting) areas will also require visitors to take off their shoes, as will some hostels and historic sites. Wherever you’re required to remove footwear, this is non-negotiable. (If you’re uncomfortable with the current state of your socks, consider getting yourself a new supply before your trip.)

Slippers off When you take off your shoes, you’ll usually be given the option of a pair of slippers for walking around inside. These are fine on wooden and other flooring, but you should never wear slippers in a  tatami  room: remove them before stepping on tatami  and place them at the room entrance.

Sign telling people to remove their shoes

Eating and drinking

Chopsticks There are a number of dos and don’ts related to the use of chopsticks. The main ones to keep in mind are to not leave chopsticks standing upright in a bowl of rice, or use them to pass food directly to another person’s chopsticks. These actions are reminiscent of rituals associated with funerals and the dead. Also avoid anything that might be considered ‘playing’ with your chopsticks (this includes using them as a spear, drumming on the table, waving them to get the waiter’s attention, and using them to get at that itch on your back).

Slurping When eating noodles in Japan, it’s standard practice to slurp them. Eat in any noodle restaurant and you’ll be surrounded by fellow diners noisily and unabashedly slurping away.

Drink up  When pouring glasses from a shared bottle (eg of sake), it’s customary to pour drinks for others in your party, and allow someone else to pour yours for you, ie you don’t pour your own drink. Say kam-pai for ‘Cheers!’ before drinking.

Tipping There is no custom of tipping in Japan. Leaving a little extra cash on the table at a restaurant will often result in a waiter chasing you down the street to give it back.

Table manners Say i-ta-da-ki-mas before eating (literally ‘I will receive’, but it’s akin to saying ‘bon appetit’), and say go-chi-sō-sa-ma de-shi-ta to express appreciation after you’re finished. Be sure to throw in a few declarations of oi-shii (‘delicious!’) throughout the meal as required.

Visiting temples and shrines

Etiquette There are many, many Buddhist temples ( o-tera ) and Shintō shrines ( jinja ) across Japan and most are open and welcoming to visitors, whether or not you’re a believer. But these are still religious sites: speak quietly in the main halls, don’t poke around cordoned-off areas, and avoid dressing as though you’re out for a day at the beach.

Shrine rituals There will be a water source in front of any shrine. Before entering the shrine, use the ladles provided to pour water over your hands to rinse them, and pour water into your hand to use to rinse your mouth (spit out on the ground, not back into the water source).

Washing hands before a shrine visit

Public behaviour

Quiet, please It’s considered rude to speak on your mobile phone while on trains and buses, and announcements encourage travellers to switch phones to silent mode. People also tend not to speak loudly when travelling on public transport, so as not to disturb fellow passengers.

Queuing At busy times when waiting to board a train, Japanese form an orderly queue.  Train station platforms will have markings showing where the carriage doors will pull up, and may have lines drawn on the platform to guide the direction of the queues.

Sniffles It’s considered uncouth to blow your nose in public. You may also see people walking around wearing surgical-style masks – some choose to use these when they have cold or flu to help prevent passing on their ailment to others.

Passengers wait to board a train at Shinjuku Station

Language matters

Don’t assume It’s not uncommon to meet Japanese who are keen to practise their English skills, but English is not as widely understood as some visitors expect and many people will be uncomfortable or too shy to use it. It’s best not to approach people with the assumption they will be able to speak it.

Turning Japanese A few basic words and phrases in Japanese will go a long way, and locals will be disproportionately impressed by even your most tortured attempt at speaking their language. S u-mi-ma-sen (‘excuse me’, which can also be used for ‘sorry’), a-ri-ga-tō   (‘thank you’), e i-go ga ha-na-se-mas ka (‘do you speak English?’), and wa-ka-ri-ma-sen (‘I don’t understand’) are all very handy for starters.

This article was first written by Benedict Walker and published in June 2013 , then updated by Laura Crawford in September 2015 .

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Japanese etiquette 101: Our top 10 tips [Updated]

japanese travel etiquette

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What does it take to master japanese etiquette.

Japan has a reputation for being a land full of obscure customs and unwritten rules that can stump even the most seasoned traveller.

This adds to its charm, as visiting gives you a chance to absorb a new way of life, to delve into its idiosyncrasies and differences from the West. It’s these differences between Japanese culture and our own that make visiting so fascinating and eye-opening. All you can do is try to learn and make mistakes along the way.

Of course, it can be a bit of a maze for the uninitiated, especially because people will very rarely tell you when you’re doing something wrong (usually out of politeness and respect for your feelings).

But Japanese people will never expect you to know all the ins and outs of their culture, just as you wouldn’t expect someone from a foreign country to understand every vagary of yours.

The more you know, the better prepared you’ll be, however, so this article will introduce you to some of the most common cultural faux pas experienced by foreigners in Japan – giving you more than enough know-how to survive without embarrassing yourself, offending anyone or getting into hot water (unless you count onsens).

Got a flight to Japan tomorrow, and you’ve only got 5 minutes?

Here are our top 10 Japanese etiquette tips:

  • Take off your shoes.
  • Get naked in an onsen.
  • Learn to bow.
  • Don’t blow your nose.
  • Table manners matter (use chopsticks correctly).
  • You don’t need to tip.
  • Never be late.
  • Be quiet on public transport.
  • Hold on to your rubbish.
  • Learn how to say hello and goodbye.

Flight delayed and you’ve finished your book already? Let’s dive into the detail.

1) Take off your shoes

There’s a lot of taking off your shoes in Japan, and it must be done in the right places. The golden rule is that you should take your shoes off whenever you come to a change of level within a building, and you should never wear shoes on tatami mats. If you’re not sure, just look out for other pairs of shoes lined up and you’ll get the idea.

These rules apply in hotels, houses, restaurants, temples, museums — everywhere. Sometimes there will be shoe racks or lockers, and in some tourist attractions, you’ll be given a plastic bag in which to carry your shoes around. Just do what everyone else is doing.

When you’ve removed your shoes, you will most often be provided with a pair of separate slippers to wear instead. Do not deviate from the plan by refusing the slippers, and make sure if you don’t get slippers you don’t walk around with bare feet — always wear socks. When you go to the loo, exchange your slippers for the designated toilet slippers (found inside or near the toilet, and often labelled “toilet” in English), before re-donning your original slippers when you re-appear. Accidentally forgetting to take off the toilet slippers after leaving the loo is pretty much the most mortifying thing you can do in Japan.

This is the one instance in which Japanese people will always let you know you’re doing something wrong, and it can be very embarrassing when you’re caught out. Don’t worry, it’s happened to all of us, but you’ve been warned.

Some traditional restaurants are really strict, so it’s worth paying extra attention when visiting them. You don’t want to get chased out for not wearing your shoes and miss all the sushi! — Will.G, Travel Consultant

Typically self-explanatory toilet slippers

2) Understand the onsen (Japanese hot springs)

Bathing in an onsen (a hot spring bath), is one of our favourite pastimes, never mind it being a Japanese custom. It has such an extensive etiquette that we’ve devoted a whole post about how to onsen like a local . Unlike some Japanese customs, those regarding onsen make perfect sense, so they’re not too difficult to remember.

The most important thing to know is that you must be naked to bathe in Japanese hot springs (no swimming costumes or trunks) and that you must wash yourself thoroughly in the showers provided before you get into the bath.

Outdoor hot spring bath at a Japanese inn

Japanese people are world-famous for bowing, and you will see it everywhere you go. Don’t worry too much about doing it yourself, but a small bow or nod of the head can be useful to express thanks or apology.

Bows are both a greeting and a term of endearment; for thanks and an apology — they have their own perplexing etiquette that very few truly understand.

In the simplest terms, the depth and duration of the bow are directly proportional to the depth of feeling being expressed. Spilt sake down someone’s back? A deep bow will show how remorseful you are. Deeper bows tend to be more formal, while a shallower bow is informal. Some bows require a bow in response, leading to endless exchanges of progressively shallower bows as each party backs away (sometimes, amusingly, into other objects or people). An inferior will bow more deeply and often than their superior, and so on. Bowing right is a surefire way to adhere to Japanese etiquette.

Luckily most Japanese people will just shake hands when dealing with a foreigner, so you don’t really need to worry about it too much. But, learning to bow is a skill worth pursuing to truly feel like you’re on the same page as everyone else.

Exemplary bowing

4) Don’t blow your nose in public

While in Western countries it is generally rude not to blow your nose (or at least to not let snot run down your face), for good Japanese manners, the reverse is true. Blowing your nose in public is frowned upon, and most people will just keep sniffing instead. It is especially rude to blow your nose at the table — so take heed!

5) Japanese manners at table

Whilst proper table manners are slowly dying out in the West, they’re still vitally important in Japan. They’re especially important if you get invited to dinner by your new Japanese friends when you’re out and about and enjoying the amazing food Japan has to offer.

Firstly, noisily slurping your noodles or soup is actively encouraged and is considered a sign of appreciation for your meal. Picking up your bowl to drink the contents or eat the last few scraps is also perfectly acceptable. You should also avoid pouring soy sauce on white rice, burping at the table, or refilling your own glass (you should, however, fill the glasses of your companions when you see that they are empty).

As if things weren’t already tricky enough, the use of chopsticks has its own complicated set of rules. Here are some do’s and don’ts :

  • Don’t use your chopsticks to pass food to another person (when eating sushi for example)
  • Don’t use the “wrong” end of your chopsticks to take food from a communal dish
  • Never stand your chopsticks upright in a rice bowl
  • Don’t rub your chopsticks together
  • Use the chopstick rest (if there is one)

Also — walking and eating is considered bad manners, as appreciating your food means taking your time and enjoying it. This means not immediately eating anything you got from a Japanese vending machine, and waiting for a quiet spot to sit down outside of the train station to enjoy your snack.

You may think that walking and eating is considered rude because of the likelihood of making mess, but it’s actually about concentrating on your meal and enjoying it. As non-Japanese people, we’re used to being more on-the-go with how we eat, so this can take some adjusting to. — Will G, Travel Consultant

Slurping: check.

6) Tipping isn’t common

Tipping isn’t commonplace in Japan, and if you do leave a tip in restaurants or bars, you may find that the server will come running after you to return your “forgotten” change. If you have a guided experience or tour, though, and feel your guide has done a particularly fantastic job, tipping may be right.

You may notice that next to a cash register, there is a small tray by the till. This is so you can place money down rather than handing it directly to the cashier, so make sure you use it whenever you see one.

7) Be punctual

Being “fashionably late” is not a thing in Japan (sorry cool kids) so if you have arranged to be at a certain place at a certain time, you will be expected to turn up at that time.

This is particularly true at mealtimes in traditional Japanese inns (called ryokan), where great time and effort go into food preparation and presentation. Here, it is insulting to your host to skip a meal or to turn up later than expected, although they will never tell you so directly.

Of course, if you get lost on the way to an appointment or reservation, a certain amount of leeway will always be allowed. This is where practicing your ‘apology bow’ really comes in.

8) Be quiet on public transport

Trains and buses are deliberately relaxing in Japan, as their work-heavy culture of long hours and late nights requires many to spend lots of time on public transport and at train stations. As such, noise is kept to a minimum to allow people time and space to breathe. If you’re being noisy, be prepared for some uncomfortable glances.

9) Keep hold of your rubbish

Nobody likes litter, and Japanese people are no exception. The streets of cities like Tokyo or Kyoto are immaculate despite their size. To keep it that way, everyone tidies up their own rubbish rather than using communal bins like Westerners do. At first, this can seem jarring and odd, but once you get used to it, you’ll be bagging your detritus up just like a local Japanese person.

10) Greetings

Greetings are incredibly important in Japanese culture. There are separate set greetings for almost every situation you could possibly imagine. Entering a room, leaving a room, leaving your house, returning to your house, welcoming somebody else home, bumping into a colleague, beginning a meal, finishing a meal… the list goes on.

Unless you speak Japanese, you don’t need to worry about learn all the various greetings. The only ones you’ll need are “Konnichiwa” (hello) and “sayonara” (goodbye)! And, as always, a smile and a willingness to give it a go, will go a long way. If you’re on a tour, ask your guide for a unique greeting you can try in your next trip to Japan.

Ready to think about visiting Japan after reading through our Japanese etiquette tips? Why not speak to one of our travel experts to get an itinerary for your trip to Japan.

japanese travel etiquette

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japanese travel etiquette

Japanese Etiquette and Manners


What is Japanese etiquette?

Japanese culture is well-known for its politeness and unique features, and what is thought to be normal in other countries isn’t always common in Japan. Many foreign tourists wonder what exactly the DO’s and DON’Ts in Japan are when traveling to Japan for the first time.

Japanese people are warm and welcoming to travelers, and they understand if foreign travelers don’t know all the Japanese customs. However, it’s always good to know the basic Japanese etiquette and manners in advance to make your trip more smooth and enjoyable. It’s also a part of experiencing and exploring the Japanese culture.

Here’s our guide to Japanese manners and etiquette, especially for travelers. Here, you’ll find all the Japanese etiquette tips, Japanese customs, and other Japanese etiquette for foreigners you need to know!

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Table of Contents

  • Basic Japanese Etiquette
  • Japanese Table Etiquette & Manners
  • Japanese Etiquette for Sightseeing
  • Japanese Etiquette for Greeting
  • Japanese House Guest Etiquette
  • Japanese Business Etiquette
  • Conclusion: How JapanesePod101 Can Help You Learn More Japanese

1. Basic Japanese Etiquette


The DO’s and DON’Ts in this first section are very basic, and they’re common in most important occasions in Japan.

Interior of a Metro Car

Keep public places clean and do not litter.

2. Japanese Table Etiquette & Manners


There are quite different table manners and etiquette in Japan compared to other countries. Don’t be surprised; when in Japan, do as the Japanese do!

1- Greet Before/After Eating

This is one of the most basic Japanese greeting etiquette rules, and Japanese people do this for every meal.

According to Japanese etiquette table manners, you should say いただきます ( Itadakimasu ) before eating. The phrase Itadakimasu doesn’t have a direct translation in English, but it means “I’m thankful for this food and I will start eating.”

Also, say ごちそうさまでした ( Gochisō-sama deshita ) after you’ve finished eating. This phrase means “It was delicious,” and it shows appreciation for the meal.

2- Use Chopsticks Properly: Chopstick Etiquette in Japan

When you’re an adult, you’re expected to know how to use chopsticks properly as this is good Japanese etiquette when eating. So when you’re eating at a Japanese cuisine restaurant, try to use chopsticks. If you don’t have the confidence to use chopsticks well, you can still ask a waiter for forks and knives.

However, don’t play with your chopsticks. It’s considered rude behavior, as well as childish, if you hold one stick with one hand and the other stick with the other hand, poking food around or pointing to something with your chopsticks, etc.

In addition, never stick them vertically in your rice bowl and never use your chopsticks to pass a piece of food to someone else’s chopsticks directly. These actions are associated with funeral rituals and the deceased, and are considered the worst possible chopstick behavior.

3- Make Noise While Eating Soup Noodles

According to Japanese manners and etiquette, making noise while you’re eating is considered bad manners. The only exception is for soup noodles such as ramen, udon, and soba, when it comes to slurping soup and noodles. Slurping shows that you’re enjoying your food. However, making chewing noises isn’t appropriate, and it’s considered rude and is associated with poor education. Close your mouth while you’re chewing food.

Bowl of Noodles

Slurping is ok only for soup noodles in Japan.

4- Do Not Pour Your Own Drink When You’re with Someone

This is another typical Japanese etiquette rule when dining. When you dine out with your friends, colleagues, or your boss, it’s rude to pour your own drink yourself. You pour drinks for everyone else first, and then they will pour your drink in return.

Usually, those who are youngest or in the lowest position of a hierarchy should be the one to pour elders drinks first. This is especially true for work-related occasions.

Even among friends, pouring drinks for each other is considered nice, and it shows your mutual thoughtfulness toward a good friendship.

5- Do Not Pay a Tip

Good news for everyone! According to Japanese etiquette, money shouldn’t be given as a tip. This bit of Japanese etiquette when visiting may surprise you, but don’t leave a tip on the table. Otherwise, the waiter/ess will run after you to let you know that you forgot your money. If you try to hand a tip to them, the staff member will wonder what the money’s for and won’t know what to do with it.

So, just keep your change in your pocket, even if you’re impressed by nice Japanese services. Instead, tell a staff member that you really liked their food or services with a smile.

Group of People Eating Out

Make sure you use chopsticks properly, especially at proper Sushi and Japanese restaurants.

3. Japanese Etiquette for Sightseeing

Bad Phrases

In this section, we’ll go over etiquette in Japan you need to keep in mind while sightseeing! This is just simple Japanese etiquette to ensure you’re polite and respectful wherever you are.

1- At Shrines and Temples

There are numerous 神社 ( jinja ) or “ Shintō shrines ” and お寺 ( o-tera ) or “ Buddhist temples ” across Japan. Foreign tourists are welcome to visit them, but there are particular manners and etiquette rules for sightseeing.

Shrines and temples are considered sacred places, and you should behave quietly with respect. Smoking is not allowed inside of the precincts. Take off your hat and don’t dress too casually when you enter buildings (for example, don’t wear beach sandals).

When arriving at the main building, throw a coin into an offering box in front of the sacred object. Then, make a short prayer with your palms together in front of your chest.

When entering Shrines, you need to do a purification ritual. There’s a water source usually located near the main 鳥居 ( Torii ) gate and you need to purify your body before proceeding further into the Shrine.

Take a provided ladle to scoop up water and pour it over both of your hands to rinse them. Then pour a bit of water in your hand and use it to rinse your mouth. Do not swallow the water, but spit it out on the ground. Put the ladle back to where it was.

2- Taxi Doors

More often than not, Japanese taxi doors are automatic! So note this tip on Japanese cultural etiquette for taxis.

When you stop a taxi, the driver will pull the lever and open the door (usually for the back seat) for you. After you get in a taxi, the door will close automatically. So don’t try to open or close the taxi door by yourself.

Taxi Dashboard

Japanese taxi calculates fee by meters.

3- Onsen and Swimming Pools

温泉 ( Onsen ), or hot springs, is one of the most popular things to do in Japan, especially during the cold seasons. If you have large tattoos on your body, however, you have to be checked to see if you’re allowed to use Onsen or the public swimming pool.

This essential Japanese etiquette rule may seem strange, so let us explain.

Traditionally, most Japanese onsen and public pools ban people with tattoos from using the facilities. This is because they intend to keep out Yakuza and members of crime gangs, who are associated with having body tattoos.

However, due to the growing demand of foreign tourists with tattoos, the number of tattoo-friendly facilities is increasing. Some facilities provide cover-up tape to allow those with tattoos access to the facilities. Be sure to check the availability in advance if you have visible tattoos on your body.

When you use Onsen , Japanese etiquette requires that users wash their bodies before entering a pool. Onsen is shared with others and it must be kept clean and hygienic. Even if you’re very excited to experience Onsen , don’t rush straight into a pool; clean yourself first.


Japanese Onsen is usually gender-separated and you can’t wear swimsuits.

4. Japanese Etiquette for Greeting

As you learn Japanese etiquette, knowing how to greet is essential. Greeting is imperative to the Japanese etiquette and manners, as politeness and respect start from the greeting.

Bowing is one of the most important common Japanese body language gestures for both formal and informal occasions. People bow to greet, nod, thank, and apologize.

There are variations of how to bow, depending on the depth, duration, and seriousness, but foreign tourists aren’t expected to understand all of it. Japanese people won’t be offended if visitors don’t bow correctly.

Bow politely; bend your head and back in a straight line when you meet someone, thank someone, or say goodbye. Bowing can be a bit awkward for you at first if you’re used to shaking hands, but follow and imitate how Japanese people bow. When someone bows to you as a greeting, it’s usually sufficient to do the same in return.

Two Men Bowing to Each Other

Bowing properly and politely is one of the most important business manners.

2- Shaking Hands but No Hugging/Kissing

Japanese people also shake hands when they greet often, such as in a work-related setting. However, the Japanese don’t hug or kiss as a greeting. Japanese people prefer to keep personal space, and traditionally avoid intimate physical body contact in public.

Hugging as a greeting can be done by Japanese people only in special cases, such as meeting someone you know well after quite a long time, or when a person is extremely emotional with joy or in mourning. Ordinary Japanese people never kiss as a greeting. If you try to hug or kiss a Japanese person whom you just met, they will get startled and feel offended.

So, when you greet Japanese people, just bow or shake hands. Do not hug or kiss.

5. Japanese House Guest Etiquette

1- remove your shoes.

Japanese people never wear shoes inside of a house. Every house has 玄関 ( genkan ) or a sunken-foyer entrance inside of the door where you remove your shoes before you actually enter the main section of the home.

You also have to remove your shoes when entering Japanese traditional accommodations which are called 民宿 ( minshuku ) or 旅館 ( ryokan ), temple halls, some restaurants, and buildings with 畳 ( tatami ) areas. Tatami is a type of mat made of grass used as a flooring material in traditional Japanese-style rooms.

It’s very rude and offensive if you enter places with your shoes on where you’re supposed to take them off, so please be aware!

2- Bring a Gift

One of the essential Japanese etiquette rules when visiting someone’s house is to bring a little お土産 ( o-miyage ), or a gift, for the host in return for their hospitality. It’s common courtesy to give a nicely wrapped gift to the host to show your appreciation for their invitation. Common gifts include sweets or drinks that they can share and enjoy while you’re visiting.

It’s rude to visit without a gift, especially when you know that the host will cook meals for you. So, when you’re invited to your friend’s place, buy cakes or a bottle of wine, and arrive on time.

Two Glasses of Wine Being Poured

A bottle of wine or Champagne would be a good choice to take for a dinner invitation.

3- Slippers

If you’re invited to someone’s home as a guest, you may be offered a pair of slippers at the genkan for walking around inside. Slippers are okay on wooden or smooth flooring, but don’t wear slippers on tatami flooring. Remove your slippers before entering a Japanese tatami room.

In addition, some households have toilet slippers. You should change out of your original slippers into toilet slippers when you enter the restroom, and never step outside the restroom wearing toilet slippers. Some hotels and restaurants also have such separated slippers in the restroom.

To learn more, please watch our YouTube video about How to Visit Someone’s House .

6. Japanese Business Etiquette


Now, it’s time for our Japanese business etiquette guide. Be mindful of all the Japanese business etiquette dos and don’ts here, because they can make or break your first impression.

1- Greeting and Introduction

According to Japanese business etiquette rules, when you meet someone in a business-related occasion, it’s considered good manners to greet them with a decent bow. You should also introduce yourself briefly with your business card.

As for bowing, stand straight first, put your hands in line with the sides of your body, and bend your upper body forward. You shouldn’t bow too quickly, and don’t just bend your head nor arch your back.

Japanese people usually talk about themselves with their name, which company they work for, what job position they’re in, and sometimes how long they’ve worked for their company or industry. Telling or asking for detailed personal information is usually inappropriate.

To learn more about bowing, please see How to Bow in Japan & Manners .

2- Exchanging Business Cards

When you meet someone, exchanging 名刺 ( meishi ), or business cards, is a must-do business custom in Japan in formal settings. Treat a business card with care, as Japanese people regard it as one’s face.

Make sure you give or receive a business card with both hands when exchanging cards. Handing a card with just one hand is considered very rude. Further, read a card you were given carefully, and ask some questions or offer comments; this is a good way to start a conversation.

Man Giving Woman a Business Card

Japanese businessmen often bow when they exchange business cards.

3- Dining in Business Settings

Whether you’re dining with colleagues, your boss, or your clients, the seating position is important in business settings.

The seat in the deepest part of the room and the furthest place from the door is considered the best seat, and it should be offered to the most respected person (such as the person in the highest job position, or the oldest person). Further, clients are prioritized above your colleagues, even your boss. The seat closest to the door is considered the least important position, and this is usually used by the youngest person.

Also, the youngest person (or the person in the lowest job position) should usually take everyone’s drink order and tell it to the waiter or waitress. The most respected or important person often gives a small speech and gives a Kanpai toast.

Dining in a business setting in Japan is very hierarchical, and roles at the dining table are implicitly allocated and performed according to the participants’ attributes.

To learn more, our video about How to Attend a Japanese Company Drinking Party is useful.

7. Conclusion: How JapanesePod101 Can Help You Learn More Japanese

We hope this article about Japanese etiquette and manners is helpful, and that you’ll have a more enjoyable experience when you visit Japan!

If you’d like to learn about the Japanese language, you’ll find very useful content on . We provide a variety of free lessons for you to improve your Japanese language skills.

We also have a YouTube channel where you can enjoy learning the Japanese language by watching videos and listening to actual Japanese pronunciation. Learning Japanese gestures is also very helpful when it comes to understanding Japanese etiquette and culture.

When you plan to visit Japan, don’t forget to check out the following content: Learn the Top 25 Must-Know Japanese Phrases! , Top 20 Travel Phrases You Should Know in Japanese , Best Traveling Tips and Places to Visit in Japan! , and much more.

Before you go, be sure to let us know in the comments what you thought about our Japanese etiquette guide. Do you feel more confident now, or is there still a situation or topic you need information about? We look forward to hearing from you!

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A Guide to Japanese Social Etiquette and Manners

Japanese Tea Ceremony Etiquette

If you're planning to visit the land of the rising sun, you should be aware of some of the basic practices at the very least.

The rules and expectations will generally change according to the place and situations, but we've listed some of the must-know that anyone visiting Japan should always remember!

Social Norms

  • Refrain from talking too much or interrupting others.  Although this practice is widely encouraged outside of Japan, it is important to remember that the Japanese will not try to interrupt you when you talk, so the same respect must be given back and there should always be room for responses when you talk. It is also common practice to avoid talking loudly in public.
  • Indirect communication.  The Japanese have mastered the subtle art of saying no, without saying no. In this sense, some answers you may get may seem ambiguous or confusing. This is especially evident when you try to get a flat answer from a Japanese friend. The best way to navigate through a conversation is to focus on your conversation partner and check for hesitations or "tells" on the implied meanings. This can range from body language, eye contact, physical contact, and facial expressions.
  • Be humble.  Modesty is highly valued in Japan, so bragging is not commonplace no matter how accomplished someone is. Usually, even if your Japanese friend is the best you know at doing something, they will respond by saying they still need improvement.
  • Apologize . It should go without saying that people should say sorry for their own mistake. The Japanese have a number of ways to apologize, all varying depending on the severity of the situation: "Sumimasen" is used as a mild apology with acquaintances and strangers while "Gomen" is an informal apology between close friends and family. Some people would use "I'm sorry" gifts as well.
  • Gift giving . Speaking of gifts, this is a very common part of Japanese culture. Gifts in Japan are typically wrapped beautifully, whether they're just common household items or souvenirs. Gift sets of four, however, should be avoided as the number sounds very similar to the Japanese word for "death".
  • More gifts . Gifts are also used to show appreciation or as repayment to someone who did a small favor for you. These kinds of gifts are usually sweets or confectionaries and treats.
  • Receive gifts gracefully.  When you get a present, try not to open it immediately or ask if it's okay to open it at that moment. Besides seeming over-eager, you don't want to embarrass yourself or the gift-giver.
  • Don't ask for a favor . Even though the previous item mentions friends doing favors for friends, it's not as common to openly ask for help. People in Japan tend to keep problems to themselves and look for solutions on their own.
  • Don't disturb others.  As mentioned before, you should try to keep your voice down when speaking in public so as not to disturb passers-by. When you're staying at an accommodation or anywhere with close neighbors, make sure you don't make too much noise especially after 10 PM.
  • Respect people's names.  The Japanese don't normally call people with their first names, but instead will use an honorific suffix (-san) with someone's last name. When you have to use someone's name, be sure to use the same rule, especially with new friends and acquaintances. When on a first-name basis or between close friends, the suffix will vary on the gender (-kun/-chan).
  • Don't over perfume.  As a courtesy to the people around you, it's best to use subtle scents or a very little amount of perfume. Too much can cause discomfort, especially in close quarters. You should be mindful of other people, what they would think, and how they would react, keeping in mind that some people may have sensitive noses or allergic reactions.
  • Keep your distance.  Unlike most Western countries, people in Japan don't usually shake hands or hug when they interact or greet each other. Instead, bowing is used more often to say "hello", "goodbye", "thank you", and "I'm sorry." Foreigners are typically not expected to bow and are more likely excused if they do it wrong. Bowing has its own set of rules, going deeper depending on how apologetic you can be or by how much you respect someone. (15°, 30°, 45°)

 Watch the playlist for Manners and Etiquettes in Japan:

Dining Etiquette and Table Manners

  • Pour the drink  of the person next to you during social gatherings. This act is usually seen as a gesture of appreciation and respect. Between two coworkers, it's a way to say "you've worked hard". When pouring the drink, make sure to hold the bottle properly with both hands. If you are on the receiving end, make sure you lift your glass up with two hands.
  • Don't refuse food.  It is rude to say no to food being offered to you in general, not just in Japan. If you want to say no because you don't like the dish, you should still accept it but you are not obligated to eat. Similarly, if you are offered a drink you decide you don't like, simply leave your glass and don't empty it. No one will refill or replace the drink if you haven't "finished" it.
  • Wait . During social gatherings, especially among coworkers, make sure you do not start eating or drinking before the highest ranking or most senior member starts eating or drinking. When you're in an office environment, this would usually be your manager or the head of the company. In family gatherings, this would traditionally apply to the father or the eldest son.
  • Kanpai!  Drinking alcoholic beverages is commonplace among the Japanese, as a way to bond with coworkers or friends when they come of age. If alcohol is not palatable to you or you simply don't want to have a glass, you can order oolong tea instead. Make sure to say "kanpai" (cheers!) before taking a shot!
  • Itadakimasu!  Make sure you show your appreciation for the food you eat by saying "itadakimsasu", (thank you for the food!) when you receive your dish. Always compliment the cook by saying "umai" (delicious) while taking a bite. After finishing your meal, make sure you thank the server or your host by saying "gochisousama deshita".
  • Cover your mouth  when you have to use a toothpick, especially when you're around other people. You can use your other hand, a table napkin, or a handkerchief. If the piece you're trying to dislodge is too stubborn, simply go to the restroom where you can comfortably work it out.
  • Don't take the last piece  when you're sharing a plate of food. This practice usually ends up in a silent debate that leads to the people at the table dancing around to offer the last piece to someone else. This could be easily resolved by asking but take note that it's not exactly the most ideal position you want to put yourself in.
  • Use your chopsticks properly. Never stab your chopsticks into your rice bowl and leave it standing up. This resembles the incense sticks that are used during funerals and it is said to bring bad luck. Similarly, never pass around food using chopsticks as this is a similar action to passing around someone's ashes.
  • Appreciate your food . The Japanese take great pride in their cuisine, preparing each dish thoughtfully and with the utmost care to bring out the perfect flavors and seasonings. It is highly irregular and disrespectful to the chef to adjust the food according to personal taste. The only time this is acceptable is in the case of food allergies or prohibitions.
  • The Oshibori  is a white piece of cloth given to you at restaurants meant to clean the hands. Never wipe your face with it or use it for any other purpose than what it is for.
  • Handle plates carefully.  Do not put the lid on the table while dripping any water from the steam everywhere. A good trick to remember is to place the lid slanting on the vessel or bowl while letting excess water drip into the food, then turning it upside down so the dry side is touching the table.
  • Eat rice first , then take a few bites from other dishes, and then eat rice again. Rice is usually meant to be used as a palate cleanser to neutralize any overpowering flavors, allowing you t appreciate the flavors of the dish more intimately.
  • Do not cancel  a restaurant reservation at the last minute. Japanese societal norms revolve around not being an inconvenience to others, after all. Canceling your reservation at the last minute, especially at upscale restaurants, puts any advanced prep-work to waste. 
  • Return your own food tray.  Most restaurants and cafes have a designated section where you can set down your used food tray and/or plate so the staff can have an easier time cleaning up. When there isn't a designated area, make sure you arrange your plate and other items from the restaurant neatly with the chopsticks on the holder and any lids on their dishes.

Dining Etiquette

How to behave in public spaces and transportation.

  • Mind where you eat.  It's generally not recommended to eat while walking as it could lead to accidents and wasted food. If you're at a festival and can't find yourself a place to sit, make sure you step to the side where you can snack without blocking anyone. While eating and drinking in trains is generally frowned upon, it's even more so if you choose to eat fermented food with strong smells like garlic or kimchi.
  • Find an empty seat  before making your order in a cafe. Not only will this be convenient for you to immediately sit down while waiting for your meal, but it will help you avoid dancing around with other customers for an empty seat. If there is a host or hostess, wait patiently for them to escort you to a seat. If it's a popular place, make sure to make a reservation if possible.
  • Don't pass your money to the cashier.  Money is rarely passed directly from hand to hand in Japan. Whenever you purchase something, a small tray is provided where you should put your payment in, whether it's cash or card. The change will also be placed here.
  • Pay at the register.  When you're being served at a place, like a cafe, where there are servers present, make sure you pay at the cashier instead of the floor staff.
  • Use an envelope when you're handing money to someone outside of a shop. Again, always try to avoid giving money directly to someone as is.
  • Don't tip.  Unlike many parts of the world, tipping is not a common practice in Japan. There are some situations that are considered an exception to this rule such as tipping private tour guides in Japan, and some ryokans. However, this doesn't necessarily mean it's widely practiced. When in doubt, avoid tipping.
  • Keep your bag off the floor.  Wherever you go in Japan, always try to avoid placing your bag on the floor since it will get dirty. Most restaurants will have hooks under the table or baskets under the chairs for bags and purses, while box-type chairs will have enough room. If there is an empty seat, you can use that instead or hang a sling bag on the chair back.
  • Use designated smoking areas.  In Japan, you cannot smoke outdoors, especially in crowded spaces since it's illegal. Parks, plazas, streets, and buildings will usually have special areas to control the smoke and pollution.
  • Prioritize good hygiene.  Being neat and clean is very important in Japan. This means that even during sports events or concerts, it's not uncommon to see people cleaning their seats after the event. This is a courtesy to the maintenance staff and for the next person after you. If there aren't any trash bins around, keep them in your bag until you can find the appropriate disposal, following waste segregation.
  • Again, good hygiene,  but in the bathroom this time .  There aren't many public restrooms in Japan but if you find yourself using one, make sure you clean up and be mindful of the person coming after you. Indoor restrooms like at ryokans and spas will have toilet slippers provided to avoid getting the floor dirty, both in the bathroom and the outside hall. Make sure you wear provided slippers in the restrooms only and do not bring them outside.
  • Photograph appropriately.  There is nothing more annoying than a tourist blatantly disregarding the rules and taking selfies at every step. Make sure to check with the place you're visiting if photos are allowed, especially at holy sites like shrines and temples, as well as museums . You should also avoid taking pictures of strangers in the streets.
  • When it comes to photographing geishas , try to take photos from a distance, and only from the sides or behind them. If they are walking, do not stop them or block their path as they are likely rushing between jobs . Always remember to be respectful.
  • Observe road safety.  Other than avoiding accidents, following road safety rules extend as a point of setting an example to young school children. Additionally, make sure you walk on the left side of the sidewalk and drive on the left side as well. This helps manage foot traffic, so try not to slow the flow.
  • Don't be entitled to space  especially in public transportation. Japan's bullet trains are known to be crowded and a little invasive if you value personal space. Try not to occupy a wide space when you're sitting down, and put your bag on your lap or carry it in front of you so you don't accidentally hit someone with it.
  • Take care if you are sick.  Wearing face masks isn't a recent practice in Japan. A lot of people will wear surgical or cloth masks in public when they get the sniffles or feel sick, even before the Coronavirus outbreak. Similarly, try to avoid blowing your nose in public, and do it in a restroom. When you do this, try not to make too much noise.
  • Follow the queue.  People in Japan will stand in line for just about anything but never cut in the line even when someone was holding your place for you. Always go to the back of the queue out of respect for the other people in line.
  • Follow the order of the people who enter the elevator - The last person who enters the elevator is supposed to be the last person to get off as well to be fair to others. When exiting, make sure to press the close button so the remaining riders will not have to wait for the doors to close.

How to Behave in Shrines and Temples

  • Take off your sunglasses and hats when you're in temples. Always remember to respect the local practices wherever you visit, even when you don't follow the religion of the site you're at.
  • Bow  when you enter the gate.
  • Be quiet.  Similar to some of the previous items, it is important not to draw attention to yourself by making a scene or loud noises. People at the temples would normally be meditating or praying and would appreciate the peace and quiet.
  • Bow two times
  • make your wish
  • hold the water scoop with the right hand
  • wash your left hand
  • hold the water scoop with the left hand
  • wash the right hand
  • hold the water scoop with the right hand and pour water onto your left hand
  • wash your mouth with the left hand. Do not drink from the water scoop.
  • Again, photograph appropriately.  Do not take a photo of the shrine by standing in the middle of the tori where you would be blocking the entrance. When there is a ceremony being held, avoid taking photos as this may disrupt the event.
  • The Omamori is a lucky charm that you can get at a temple and is usually bought as a souvenir. As tempting as it can be, do not open the amulet unless you want to lose any potention good luck it could bring. There is nothing interesting inside besides a small prayer.

Basic Rules at Onsens, Ryokans, and similar places

  • Cover visible tattoos.  While some onsens in Tokyo and Kyoto allow for tattooed clients to enter the baths without covering up, the general rule is that tattooed individuals are not allowed in the public baths. Always check in with the onsen to confirm.
  • Wash up before you enter the hot spring. Onsens are not meant for washing the dirt off your body but are instead used as a form of therapy or relaxation. Communal baths, especially, will have multiple people using them at the same time, so each person has to be thoughtful of all the guests.
  • Take your shoes off when you're going into a room with tatami mats on the floor. Socks should always be worn on the mats since they are fragile. Similarly, never place heavy baggage on them either. Make sure to arrange your shoes pointing towards the exit if they are left in the foyer so they are easy to put on when you leave. This is also common practice when visiting a typical Japanese household.

Ryokan Etiquette Ryokan Manners and Etiquette Onsen Manners and Etiquette

Basic business manners and etiquette.

  • Follow the hierarchy order.  When conducting business in Japan, always take note of the most senior person in the group or at least the next person whose position is directly higher than yours. You will typically find yourself "following the leader" when you eat, drink, and make introductions.
  • Be early.  It's a common practice in Japan to arrive at least ten minutes early to any meeting. Besides being responsible and respecting other people's time, this habit is also to make up for any incidents and setbacks on the way.
  • Be prepared.  In a similar manner, time is valuable to any businessman around the world. It pays back to be extra prepared with documents, business cards, and other necessities when you're going to work or conducting business.

Business Etiquette

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Japanese society is known for its politeness, which is why knowing a few key etiquette tips for travel in Japan can be really helpful. 

Its many etiquette rules can be daunting to anyone planning to visit Japan. 

While there's no need to get overly anxious about making social faux pas, noone should put their foot in it if it can be easily avoided.

Travel Etiquette in Japan The Real Japan Rob Dyer

Top 7 Etiquette Tips For Travel In Japan by Rob Dyer

Don't be that loud foreigner.

There’s a phrase in Japan that gaijin (foreigners) are often given a ‘gaijin pass’ to make mistakes. People will be understanding. However, observing a few key customs will help you blend in with the locals.

The subject is so extensive that there are several books available on the topic. But, for starters, here's my Top 7 Etiquette Rules to follow in Japan ...

#1 Be considerate and blend in

Etiquette in Japan The Real Japan Rob Dyer

Attempting to blend in with the locals in will always be welcomed in Japan

Japanese society often means foregoing some personal expression so as not to stand out. The Japanese have a saying: “ The nail that stands out must be hammered down ”.

Many people do not speak while using public transport, even if they are travelling with friends or family members. If you do speak, do so quietly so as not to disturb other passengers.

Many people do not speak while using public transport

Few things make me wince more inside, than seeing a loud foreign tourist, stomping about, gesticulating wildly, practically shouting as they speak.

Don't be that loud foreigner who stands out!

Be considerate of others (surely something we all do everyday anyhow?) and try to blend in as much as possible. Using this as a general guiding principle will serve you well on your travels in Japan.

#2 Removing shoes indoors

Shoes Etiquette in Japan The Real Japan Rob Dyer

Remove shoes when entering homes, hotel rooms, restaurants, changing rooms

Bowing aside, perhaps Japan's best-known custom is removing footwear when entering a home.

The same also applies in traditional-style restaurants, hotel rooms, ryokan ( Japanese inns ), minshuku (Japanese B&Bs) and onsen ( hot springs ). You should also take off your shoes before entering a changing room in clothing stores.

Japanese culture makes a clear distinction between soto (outside) and uchi (inside), and this is where this custom originates.

Japanese culture makes a clear distinction between soto (outside) and uchi (inside)

Often you’ll exchange your outside footwear to indoor slippers. This is done at the genkan - an area directly inside the entrance, designed as the place where external footwear is removed and left.

This is probably the main social faux pas that (even the very polite) Japanese will actually pick you up on. Whether in private or in public.  Don't sweat it if someone does point out your error. You won't be the first, or last to do it.

#3 How to use chopsticks

Chopstick Etiquette in Japan The Real Japan Rob Dyer

There's a lot of etiquette involved when it comes to using chopsticks. Here are three essential chopstick manners to get your started:

  • Don’t place your chopsticks vertically in your rice/food (this is a funeral ritual).
  • Don’t pass food using your chopsticks to someone else's chopsticks.
  • Don’t point with your chopsticks, or use them to pull dishes towards you.

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Number 2 on the list is frowned upon also because it relates to funeral rites. When a person is cremated in Japan (as virtually all are) mourners pick up bones of the deceased with chopsticks and pass them into an urn. The act of passing food with your chopsticks is seen as resembling this.

If you struggle to use chopsticks simply ask for a knife and fork

If you struggle to use chopsticks simply ask for a knife and fork or a spoon. Many restaurants and izakaya will have them. Some modern Japanese dishes are even sometimes served with a spoon.

No-one will be offended if you need a bit of cutlery assistance when dining.

#4 There is no tipping (yay!)

Tipping Etiquette in Japan The Real Japan Rob Dyer

Photo:   Jasmin777 from Pixabay

In Japan there is no such thing as tipping.

(No more trying to remember what percentage you are supposed to tip!)

Don't make the mistake of trying to tip, thinking you are being extra considerate. You are more likely to offend the person you're offering the tip to.

A (little-known) tipping exception

There is a little-known exception to the ‘no-tipping’ rule.

When you’re on a guided tour (such as a one-day coach trip), it is acceptable to tip your guide at the end of the tour if you especially enjoyed it. A modest monetary gesture is fine. If you’re unsure how much - then see what the locals are tipping and judge by that.

#5 Using your phone in public

Phone Etiquette in Japan The Real Japan Rob Dyer

Photo: Tore F on Unsplash

It's not the done thing to talk on the phone when using public transport. Don't be surprised if staff ask you to stop. It's fine to use it to play games (provided the sound is off), browse the web, check your messages, etc.

On Japan's shinkansen bullet trains, you'll see signs in the carriages asking you to take and make calls only in the vestibules between cars, or in a designated areas.

Don't watch videos or listen to music out loud in public

Using phones in restaurants or cafes is considered impolite and inconsiderate of others. If you must make or take a call, step outside to do it. Don't watch videos or listen to music out loud in public.

#6 Don't eat and walk on the street

Eating Etiquette in Japan The Real Japan Rob Dyer

A friend and I munching on Minion donuts in Universal Studios Japan

Although you do see people sometimes eating on the street in front of yatai (street food stalls), walking along and eating or drinking is a no-no.

Don’t eat or drink on public transport. However, on long distance journeys eating ekiben (‘station bento’) boxed meals on bullet trains is considered a part of the experience - so enjoy it.

Eating outside within the grounds of theme parks (like I am doing in the photo above, taken at Universal Studios Japan ) is also fine.

#7 Learn a little Japanese

Smoking Etiquette in Japan The Real Japan Rob Dyer

Even if you can't speak Japanese, it's often easy to get the gist of public information signs

Don’t expect that most people in Japan will be able to speak English. They won't.  Besides, it's polite (and easy) to learn at least a few useful Japanese words and phrases.

No one will expect you to be fluent, but any Japanese you do use will show you to be a considerate traveller and be welcomed. Just use whatever Japanese you have - no matter how little that may be.

Don’t expect most people in Japan to speak English

Also, the Japanese are particularly adept at being attuned to the needs of others , especially when those in need are customers. It's called omoiyari.  So even if you can't always express yourself in their language, you can work on the basis that in most instances, the locals will do their best to understand and assist you.

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Etiquette in Japan The Real Japan Rob Dyer

VIDEO: Top 7 Etiquette Tips For Travel in Japan

Nevertheless, a small amount of well-chosen Japanese can go a long way during your travels in Japan. If you'd find a reference of 32 key travel-related Japanese words and phrases handy, then check out my first Japan travel guide .

Not being able to speak Japanese is the No.1 concern of most visitors to Japan. Our (most popular) post How To Travel in Japan (When You Don't Speak Japanese) will guide you further on the subject.

BONUS: Tips for sustainable travel in Japan

One thing we can all do as travellers in Japan is to take care to tread lightly, meaning to travel as sustainably as possible.

Travellers in Japan often comment on how clean the streets, stations and facilities are as they travel around. But one area where Japan needs to do better is to take steps to curb its overuse of single-use plastics.

As a visitor to the country there are a few simple ideas you can try that will help improve the situation. These include travelling outside of the golden route ( Tokyo , Osaka , Kyoto ), hiring local guides, and proactively asking about sustainable options when staying at hotels, eating out, and elsewhere.

Japan sustainability expert and podcaster JJ Walsh has written a detailed introduction to sustainable travel in Japan . It includes some of the steps you can take when visiting Japan that will help you make the most of your travels, while minimizing your environmental impact .

FURTHER READING: 5 Insider Tips for Sustainable Travel in Japan

What would you add to this list?

These are just a few essential customs to be aware of and observe. 

There are plenty more, which I'll probably explore more widely in another, more in-depth article. In the meantime, what other Japanese customs or points of etiquette do you think are essential or would add to this list? Leave a comment below.

Rob Dyer The Real Japan

About the Author

A writer and publisher from England, Rob has been exploring Japan’s islands since 2000. He specialises in travelling off the beaten track, whether on remote atolls or in the hidden streets of major cities. He’s the founder of .

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  • 11 Etiquette Rules You Should...

Etiquette Tips For Visiting Japan

Note the placement of chopsticks by diners at 35 steps Bistro Restaurant, Izakaya, Shibuya, Tokyo

Tokyo Writer

Japan is known for its highly structured society, governed by an unspoken set of strict etiquette rules. This can be daunting for newcomers, but fret not – the Japanese don’t expect outsiders to know all the rules of the game, although a basic understanding is helpful. These Japanese etiquette tips will stand you in good stead. Did you know you can now travel with Culture Trip? Book now and join one of our premium small-group tours to discover the world like never before.

Handling chopsticks.

Possibly the number-one rule of Japanese etiquette for tourists, hence why it tops this list: there are two places to lay your chopsticks down on the table: either flat across your bowl, or leaning on the chopstick rest. Never leave your chopsticks sticking straight up in your rice bowl and never pass food from chopsticks to chopsticks: both of these mimic funeral rituals and are considered disrespectful. If you want to pass food to someone, use the back end of your chopsticks to place it in a dish for them.

The correct way to position your chopsticks

Don’t Be a Picky Eater

The Japanese hate to be wasteful, and picking things out of your meal to leave aside (bones excluded) is considered disrespectful. It offends not only your host but also the farmers who cultivated the vegetables and the animals who gave up their lives for the sake of your dish. It’s also polite to sample a little from each dish on the table.

A diner at a ramen noodle cafe, draining every last bit of broth from the bowl

Don’t Fill Your Own Glass

You’ve probably heard the expression kampai , which is the Japanese equivalent to cheers . But what else do you know about drinking alcohol in Japan? For starters, do not fill your own glass – it implies that your host or dining partners are ungracious. Wait for someone else to fill it, and be sure to return the favour. If possible, try and raise your glass a little off the table while it’s being filled – this is very formal Japanese etiquette, however, so if you’re just dining with friends it’s best to wait and see what everyone else does first.

It’s polite to allow others to fill your glass, but never fill it yourself

Say Itadakimasu!

A meal at a Japanese table is not a free-for-all. Politely wait for everyone to be seated before saying itadakimasu (“I humbly receive”) together. At the end of the meal, be sure to thank the cook by saying gochisō-sama deshita (“That was a great feast”). Your host will definitely appreciate this gesture.

A Family says Itadakimasu (“I humbly recieve”) before eating

Give Up Your Seat

When using public transport, be sure to give up your seat to those who need it more. Be careful not to use those seats reserved for the elderly and disabled, as well as pregnant women and those with small children. Many pregnant Japanese women stay so slim that they must carry pink tags to signify their right to reserved seating – so keep an eye out for them as well!

A priority seat sign on a Japan Railways train in Chiba prefecture

Don’t Walk and Eat

In general, walking while eating or drinking is frowned upon, although it is acceptable in the case of some foods, especially during festive occasions. You’ll see most people carrying their takeout in secure bags to eat later, or finishing their drinks while standing at the vending machine. And in Japan, they’ve taken bad public transport etiquette one step further: drinking and eating are actually prohibited, so you won’t ever have to discreetly grimace at the waft of someone’s freshly opened katsu curry box.

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People enjoying their takeaway meal in Tsukiji Outer Market – but without actually taking the food away

Forget the Tip

Tipping is not common practice in Japan. Restaurants or other service providers will usually have an additional fee set by their establishment built into the bill. If you do feel the need to give some money to your home-stay family or to tip an especially helpful maid at your accommodations, place the money in an envelope first – it’s bad manners to place a tip directly into someone’s hand.

Use the Tray

Many stores will have small trays in which to place the money when paying for an item, rather than handing it directly to a cashier. If you spot such a tray be sure to put the money in there, because disregarding it is somewhat rude. Also keep in mind that most people pay with cash and few places accept credit cards besides the “superstores” or expensive restaurants and hotels. Always be sure to carry enough cash with you to cover your expenses.

Japanese soup and noodles on a tray. Small trays are often provided for you to make your cash payment

Present Your Card

Rules for tourists are numerous, but if you’re in Japan on business there are even more rules to remember. If you have a business card or meishi , present it to your new acquaintance at the beginning of your meeting (bonus points for having it printed in both Japanese and English). Hold the card in both hands when receiving. Either place the card face up on the table in front of you for reference, or tuck it safely away in a business card holder – nowhere else. It’s also okay to ask how to pronounce someone’s name at this point (but never write on the card in their presence)!

Businesspeople swapping business cards, a simple exchange that is accompanied by strict rules of decorum

Take Off Your Shoes

Always take off your shoes when entering someone’s home – this is standard Japanese etiquette. A Japanese home will always have slippers for guests to wear, so you don’t have to worry about getting your socks dirty. Some temples and restaurants might also ask patrons to remove their shoes before entering.

In homes, as well as temples and some restaurants, you are expected to remove your shoes

Sit Properly

It’s very common in homes, and even in some traditional restaurants, to sit on the floor around a low table to eat, rather than in Western-style chairs. For formal occasions, both genders kneel down and sit up straight. For more casual situations, women may sit with both legs to one side, and men can sit in the cross-legged seated position that many cultures are familiar with.

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  • Best of Japan » Japan Travel Blog » Japanese Etiquette Tips: Do’s and Don’ts for International Travelers

Japanese Etiquette Tips: Do’s and Don’ts for International Travelers

May 21, 2024

Tea ceremony

When traveling to a new country for the first time, “culture shock” is expected. You may be especially intimidated if you have heard that there are a lot of “do’s and don’ts” for Japan. Consider these tips for traveling to Japan, and you will be sure to fit right in this warm and inviting country.

Meeting and greeting tips

When in Japan, it is polite to bow to the other person when you meet them, when you are saying thank you, or when saying goodbye. If someone bows to you, lean forward and incline your head in return. There are many complexities to the bowing ritual – such as how far, how long, and how many times to bow – but as a tourist, you won’t be expected to know these details . Simply making the effort will endear you to others.

Gifts and business cards

In formal settings, such as on a business trip, it is customary to exchange business cards or name cards when you meet someone. In addition to cards, you may want to bring some small souvenir gifts from your home country. Giving a gift is a sign of appreciation , especially if you are staying in someone’s home. Choose something small and unique to your homeland, such as a candy or key chain. Always use two hands rather than one when giving or receiving gifts or cards.

Clothing tips

Remove your footwear.

When entering private homes, temples, traditional style accommodations , and even many restaurants and tourist sites, you will be expected to remove your shoes. You will usually see shelving to place your shoes on. You may by given slippers to use while indoors.

If the restaurant or accommodations include areas of tatami , or woven straw matting covering the floor, you will need to remove the slippers before walking on the tatami. You may leave the slippers at the room’s entrance.

Tatami floored room in a ryokan

Also, separate slippers may be provided for use in the restroom . Leave your original slippers outside the bathroom door, and change back into them when you exit the bathroom.

Tip : while traveling in Japan, wear shoes that you can remove and put on quickly and easily. Don’t forget to wear clean socks!

Eating and drinking tips  

Table manners.

Good manners involve words of appreciation before, during, and after the meal. Before you chow down, remember to say i-ta-da-ki-mas , the equivalent for “bon appetit” meaning, “I will receive.” During the meal, say oi-shii to indicate that you are enjoying yourself.

Afterwards, say go-chi-so-sa-ma de-shi-ta to express appreciation for the meal. Don’t be surprised to hear others slurping their soup or noodles – that is acceptable. It’s fun, too, so give it a try while in a land that welcomes noisy eating!  

Using chopsticks

If you’ve already gotten the hang of eating with chopsticks, that’s good. Remember, though, that your mother told you not to play with your food – similarly, in Japan there are certain actions that are considered ‘playing’ with your chopsticks . Avoid using them to scratch an itch, signal to a waiter in a restaurant, point at someone, spear a piece of food, or drum on the table.

Also, don’t cross the chopsticks , leave them standing up in your bowl, and don’t use your chopsticks to ‘hand’ a piece of food to someone else’s waiting chopsticks. The latter are related to funeral rituals and are therefore not appropriate for mealtimes. If taking food from a communal serving dish, use the ‘wrong’ end of the chopsticks, opposite the end you put in your mouth.

Chopsticks and ramen

Tipping in Japan

Tipping is not customary in Japan . If you leave a cash tip on the table, the waiter may not understand it and chase you down to return it. Money is also seldom passed from hand to hand. When paying for an item, you will place the cash in the tray provided. Your change will likewise be placed in this tray.

Temples and Shrines

Tours are offered at many Buddhist and Shinto shrines, and you may see these as mere tourist attractions – but remember, these are religious sites still used for worship . Be respectful when visiting a temple or shrine – don’t enter off-limits areas, speak softly, and dress respectfully (i.e., don’t wear your swim suit).

Religious rituals

Most shrines require ceremonial washing before entering. Use a ladle to pour water over your hands. Catch some of the water in your hand and rinse your mouth – spit the water onto the ground , never back into the water basin.  

Meiji shrine entrance

Trains and public transportation  tips

Mobile devices.

Talking on your cell phone in the confined spaces of a train or bus is considered rude. If you must use your phone to text message, turn the ringer to silent mode . Also, speak quietly to your travel companions.

Stay connected in Japan with a Pocket Wi-Fi

Queues and lines

In busy train stations, bus stations, and airports, you will be expected to form an orderly line . Don’t push ahead, and pay attention to directional lines painted on the floors.

In case of illness

Do not blow your nose while in a public place, and try to avoid sniffling or sneezing. If you are sick, purchase and wear a surgical mask to avoid spreading germs to others.

Also read : Japanese trains etiquette

Shinkansen bullet train

The language barrier  

While you may very well meet people who speak the English language, don’t assume that everyone will. Instead, learn some helpful phrases in Japanese , such as sumimasen , meaning “excuse me” or “sorry,” and arigato , which means, “thank you.”  

Even if you make a mistake or forget what is expected in a certain situation, always be kind and patient with yourself and others around you. The locals will likely be pleased with your efforts at mastering Japan etiquette, even when imperfect.

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Anyway to contact, and get Japanese people to contact, JR and request the train staff enforce the mobile phone noise on train rule. Lived here for 20+ years and the phone ringers, talking on the phone and video watching with the sound on that’s been happening within the past 5 years is driving my wife and I crazy!

Of all the internet websites and blogs, this has been the most helpful.

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Etiquette at Shrines and Temples

Show your respects at a shrine or temple the right way

Edward Yagisawa

Senso-ji, the Fushimi Inari, Kiyomizu-dera... many of Japan’s top tourist destinations are shrines and temples, while many lesser known but still magnificent ones exist all over Japan, even in the metropolitan areas.

Visiting these sacred places has long been an important tradition of the Japanese, especially during New Year’s , when long lines of people praying for a good year ahead form in front of major shrines and temples. While even many Japanese people are not fully aware of the manners and etiquette involved in visiting a shrine or temple, just follow this guide and you'll be doing things the right way in no time.

The act of visiting and praying at a shrine of a temple is called omairi ; when this is done for the new year, it is called hatsu-moude .

One concern many people have is that praying at too many shrines and temples will bring bad luck instead, since it gives off the impression that they are greedy. However, this is not true and merely a myth, as each shrine and temple has its own set of divine virtues. So don’t worry about having to choose just one of Japan’s many magnificent shrines or temples!

What's the difference between shrines and temples?

Doesn’t seem like a hard question at first sight, but even many Japanese people aren’t aware of the answer.

There are two easy ways to tell them apart. Firstly, shrines have a simple gate, called a torii , that separates the human world and sacred ground, while the gates of a temple, called a sanmon , look more like a large house rather than a gate. Secondly, temples almost always have Buddhist images and statues, while shrines do not.

Thus, to sum up the differences in a single sentence, gods reside in shrines, while Buddhas reside in temples.

How to visit a shrine

Bow slightly before entering the torii gates, and keep in mind to walk on the side of the path to the shrine rather than in the middle. The middle of the path and the torii are for the gods, not for humans.

On the way to the shrine, you will see a small pavilion with a basin filled with water; this (called the chozuya ) is where you purify yourself before approaching the main shrine. Fill the ladle with water and pour some water on your left hand, then right hand. Next, clean your mouth by holding the ladle in your right hand again and pouring some water into your left hand and rinse lightly - don’t wash your mouth directly from the ladle! Finally, hold the ladle vertically, allowing for the remaining water to trickle down the handle and cleaning it. If you’re visiting in the winter, don’t skip this step just because it’s too cold!

When you reach the shrine you are now finally ready to pay your respects. This process can be divided into several steps.

  • Bow slightly.

Gently toss a coin into the box in front of you. The amount of money does not matter; just because you used a 500 yen coin, it does not mean that there is a higher chance of your wishes coming true. Many Japanese people believe that using a 5-yen coin increases their chances of finding a significant other, since go-en is homophonous to the Japanese word meaning “relationship.” However, this is nothing more than an urban legend; gods existed before the yen currency did.

Ring the bell (if there is one) 2 or 3 times to signal to the gods that you have arrived.

Deeply bow twice (until you reach a 90 degree angle).

Clap twice, with your left hand slightly in front.

Pay your respects, remembering to thank the gods as well.

Deeply bow once.

How to visit a temple

The same rules apply as those of visiting a shrine - bow slightly before entering, walk to the sides, and purify yourself at the chozuya ; however, the manner in which you pay respect varies.

Burn incense (usually provided at the temple); the scent of incense is food for the Buddha. Lighting your own incense stick off the burning sticks of others is a no-no, since it means taking on their sins.

Gently toss a coin into the box in front of you.

Ring the bell (if there is one) 2 or 3 times.

Bow slightly and pay your respects, putting your hands together but DO NOT CLAP. It is recommended that you hold a string of beads or rosary while you pray. Don’t forget to thank the Buddha!

After paying your respects, at shrines you can purchase ema , which are small wooden plaques in which you write your wishes and then hang them to be received by the gods. Hamaya , which are “holy arrows” that people decorate at home to ward off evil spirits, and different kinds of omamori , or amulets, such as for road safety and easy baby delivery, are popular souvenirs. Commemorative stamps called shuin are offered at both shrines at temples as a memento of having paid your respects.

Furthermore, for usually only 100 yen, you can purchase an omikuji , a slip of paper with fortunes written on it; depending on your fortune, you can either keep them or tie them to a rope. While mostly in Japanese, some shrines offer English copies of the fortunes as well. Omikuji fortunes are classified as follows (from best to worst):

  • dai-kichi (大吉) - great blessing
  • chuu-kichi ​ (中吉) - middle blessing
  • sho-kichi (小吉) - small blessing
  • kichi (吉) - blessing
  • sue-kichi (末吉) - ending blessing
  • kyo (凶) - curse
  • dai-kyo (大凶) - great curse

Additionally, omikuji have advice for different aspects of the upcoming year, such as travel, relationships, health, and wishes.

Next time you visit a Japanese shrine or temple, don’t just take pictures - experience it by paying your respects and following these easy steps.

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By Edward Yagisawa

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Atsuta Shrine in Kaga

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japanese travel etiquette

Unwrapping Japan: Mastering Etiquette for the Savvy Tourist

I magine stepping into a world where tradition weaves through the fabric of modern life, a place where each gesture holds meaning and respect is the cornerstone of society. Welcome to Japan, a country that captivates with its contrasts and charms with its customs. But for the uninitiated American traveler, navigating this rich tapestry of manners can be as bewildering as it is beautiful.

  • Over 31 million visitors need to navigate Japan's etiquette maze for a seamless experience.
  • Public dining norms in Japan favor stationary snacking, not on-the-go munching.
  • "Respecting Japanese customs is more than good manners; it's a bridge to understanding," says Hiroshi Horiuchi.
  • Learn the dos and don’ts to enhance your travels and embrace cultural harmony.
  • Immerse yourself in Japanese culture with wisdom, wit, and a touch of humor.

Why Etiquette Matters in Japan 🎎

According to a 2019 survey by the Japan National Tourism Organization , over 31 million foreign tourists have found their way to Japan's shores.

Each one represents an opportunity for cultural exchange, and in Japan, etiquette is the currency of interaction.

Fact: In Japan, stationary snacking is the social standard, contrary to the bustling street food scenes of other global destinations.

Navigating the Cultural Landscape

First impressions: greetings and gestures.

The Japanese bow , a gesture as intricate as it is emblematic, varies in depth and duration, depending on the situation.

As a traveler, mirroring this gesture, even in its simplest form, shows an acknowledgment of local customs and an openness to engage respectfully.

Money Matters: The Art of Transaction

When making purchases, embrace the small tray at registers, known as a coin tray .

It's not just a quaint custom; it's a dance of decorum, avoiding the supposed impoliteness of handing money directly to cashiers.

Dining Decorum: Beyond the Chopsticks

Fact: Sidewalk snacking is a faux pas. Here, one is expected to pause, perch on a bench, and then proceed with their palate pleasures.

"Japan is known for its unique culture and traditions. As a tourist, respecting their customs not only makes your trip more enjoyable but also helps promote cross-cultural understanding." - Hiroshi Horiuchi, renowned travel guide author.

The Unspoken Dance of Public Life

Japan's unwritten rules govern the ebb and flow of daily life.

From the hushed carriages of the Shinkansen to the orderly queues at the city bus, there's a communal rhythm that, once understood, allows you to move in harmony with the local populace.

Public Transportation: Move with the Masses

Patience is a virtue, and in Japan, it's also a requirement.

Boarding a train? Wait for others to alight. On an escalator? Stand to one side, the left in Tokyo, the right in Osaka, and allow others to pass.

Recycle Right: A Country That Cares

The scarcity of public trash cans might baffle, but it's a nod to Japan's deep-seated environmental ethos.

Learn to sort your refuse as the locals do: burnable, non-burnable, and recyclable.

American Tourists: Bridging the Cultural Gap

As Americans visiting Japan, there's a kaleidoscope of customs to consider.

From onsens (hot springs) where tattoos might stir stares, to the tatami mats where one's feet should never tread, awareness is your ally.

Parting Words of Wisdom

Mastering the intricacies of Japanese etiquette is not just a matter of politeness; it's the key to unlocking the full richness of your travel experience in the Land of the Rising Sun . As we've explored in this comprehensive guide, Japan's customs and traditions run deep, intricately woven into the fabric of daily life.

From the respectful bow to the artful handling of money, from the importance of stationary dining to the harmonious dance of public life, each element of Japanese etiquette tells a story. It's a story of cultural reverence, of respect for one another and the environment, and of a society that thrives on harmony and order.

Ingraining these etiquettes is not just about blending in; it's about respect. It's about an American abroad not just seeing the sights but truly understanding them. We have the privilege and responsibility to be respectful guests in this captivating nation. By embracing these customs, we not only show our reverence for Japan's heritage but also create meaningful connections with its people.

This understanding is the bridge that connects us as global citizens, fostering empathy and appreciation for the diversity of our world. So, as you embark on your journey through Japan, armed with newfound knowledge and cultural sensitivity, relish every moment.

Immerse yourself in the rich tapestry of traditions, explore with curiosity, and savor the unique flavors of this remarkable country. Your understanding and respect will be reciprocated with warmth and hospitality , turning your visit into an unforgettable cultural exchange that transcends borders and enriches your soul.

FAQs Based on the Blog Post

Why is it important to understand etiquette in japan.

Understanding etiquette in Japan is crucial for showing respect for the culture, enhancing your travel experience , and facilitating smoother interactions during your stay.

Is it considered rude to eat while walking in Japan?

Yes, traditionally, it is considered impolite to eat or drink while walking in public in Japan. Most people stop at a spot to eat or find a bench, especially near vending machines.

How should I handle money when making a purchase in Japan?

In Japan, you should place your money on the small tray provided at the cash register, known as a coin tray, instead of handing it directly to the cashier.

Can I tip for good service in Japan?

Tipping is not customary in Japan and can sometimes be seen as offensive, except in high-end establishments where a service charge is already included in the bill.

How should I behave in a Japanese temple or shrine?

Be respectful in a Japanese temple or shrine: follow posted rules, take photos only where permitted, wash hands at the purification fountain, and be mindful of the sacred nature of the space.

What should I do with my trash when there are no public bins available?

Carry your trash with you until you find the correct disposal area, and make sure to separate it according to local recycling rules.

What is the proper etiquette for using chopsticks in Japan?

Do not stick chopsticks upright in a bowl of rice or pass food directly from your chopsticks to someone else's, as these actions resemble funeral practices. 

If you like this article, check out: Nigeria: Understanding Nigerian customs

  • Japan National Tourism Organization (2019)
  • Hiroshi Horiuchi, Renowned Travel Guide Author
  • "Understanding Japanese Etiquette," published by the Society for International Cultural Exchange (SICE)

Clever Journey | Travel Gear Reviews, Packing Tips, Travel Advice

Traveloka Team

23 May 2024 - 4 min read

6 Japanese Table Manners You Need to Master Before Visiting Japan

Japan, a country known for its rich cultural heritage and meticulous attention to detail, holds its dining customs in high regard. Japanese table manners are deeply rooted in tradition and reflect the country's values of respect, harmony, and mindfulness.

Central to these etiquettes is the art of using chopsticks, an essential utensil in Japanese cuisine. In this comprehensive guide, we delve into the intricacies of Japanese table manners, with a focus on chopstick etiquette.

Understanding Japanese Table Manners

japanese travel etiquette

Japanese table manners encompass a wide array of customs and practices, all aimed at creating a harmonious dining experience. From the way dishes are presented to the manner in which one consumes food, every aspect of dining in Japan is steeped in tradition. Here are some key elements of Japanese table manners:

1. Seating Arrangement

In formal dining settings, seating arrangements are often hierarchical, with the most esteemed guest seated closest to the host or at the head of the table. The arrangement may also take into account age, status, or professional rank. Guests should wait to be seated or guided to their place by the host.

Despite the predetermined rules, hosts should also consider the comfort and preferences of their guests when arranging seating. For example, guests with specific dietary restrictions or mobility issues may be seated in positions that accommodate their needs.

Overall, seating arrangements in Japanese table manners are guided by principles of respect, hierarchy, and consideration for guests, reflecting the importance of harmony and etiquette in Japanese culture.

2. Oshibori

Before the meal begins, it is customary to clean one's hands with a hot towel called oshibori. Oshibori is a traditional Japanese custom involving the offering of a hot or cold towel to guests as a gesture of hospitality and respect. The word "oshibori" is derived from "osu," meaning "to press or wipe," and "hioru," which means "to moisten or wipe one's hands."

While oshibori has its roots in traditional Japanese customs, it is also commonly practiced in modern settings such as restaurants, hotels, and spas throughout Japan and in Japanese-influenced establishments worldwide. It's a small but meaningful gesture that adds to the overall experience of hospitality.

3. Slurping

Contrary to Western dining norms, slurping noodles, particularly ramen or soba, is considered acceptable and even a sign of enjoyment in Japanese culture. It's a way to express appreciation for the food.

4. Saying Grace

Before starting the meal, it's common for Japanese diners to say "Itadakimasu," which roughly translates to "I humbly receive." This expression shows gratitude for the food and the efforts of those who prepared it.

5. Soy Sauce

Pouring soy sauce directly onto rice or dunking rice into a soy sauce dish is generally avoided while eating. Instead, pour a small amount of soy sauce into a small dish for dipping.

japanese travel etiquette

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japanese travel etiquette

Japanese Chopstick Etiquette

japanese travel etiquette

Chopsticks hold significant cultural importance in Japan and are not merely utensils for eating but symbols of respect and tradition. Therefore, the Japanese have these specific rules regarding the use of chopsticks.

Known as "hashi no reigi" (箸の礼儀), Japanese chopstick etiquette is a set of customs and manners associated with the use of chopsticks. Observing chopstick etiquette demonstrates one's respect for the food, the host, and fellow diners. Here are some essential chopstick etiquettes to keep in mind:

1. Never Stick Chopsticks Vertically

One of the most crucial rules is to never stick chopsticks upright into a bowl of rice or any kind of food. This act resembles a funeral ritual where rice is offered to the deceased and is considered highly disrespectful.

2. Passing Food

When sharing dishes, use the broad end of your chopsticks or designated serving utensils to transfer food to someone else's plate. Avoid passing food directly from your chopsticks to another's chopsticks, as this resembles a funeral custom where bones are passed between family members' chopsticks at a cremation.

3. Resting Chopsticks

When not in use, rest your chopsticks on a chopstick rest or across the top of your bowl. Avoid placing them directly on the table, as this is considered unhygienic.

4. Separating Chopsticks

Do not separate chopsticks apart from each other by rubbing them together. This gesture implies that the chopsticks are of poor quality and can be seen as an insult to the host.

5. Never Spear Food

Avoid using chopsticks to spear or stab food, as this is reminiscent of funeral rites. Instead, use them to pick up food gently.

6. Do Not Point

Refrain from using chopsticks to point at people or objects, as this is considered impolite.

7. Sharing Food

When sharing dishes with others, avoid using the end of your chopsticks that you put in your mouth to pick up food from communal plates. Instead, turn your chopsticks around to use the clean end for serving.

8. Stirring or Playing

Avoid using chopsticks for purposes other than eating, such as stirring drinks or tapping utensils on the table, as it's considered disrespectful and disruptive.

9. Use of Hands

It's acceptable to use your hands to assist with difficult-to-handle foods or to pick up larger pieces that are challenging to grasp with chopsticks.

10. Finishing the Meal

At the end of the meal, place your chopsticks together neatly on the chopstick rest or side by side on the table, signaling that you have finished eating.

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Mastering chopstick etiquette may take some practice, but it's essential for anyone dining in Japan or enjoying Japanese cuisine elsewhere. Observing these chopstick etiquettes not only demonstrates respect for Japanese culture but also ensures a pleasant dining experience for everyone involved. Keep in mind these rules before you go to Japan to get accustomed with the beauty of Japanese table manners.

Already excited to fully experience Japanese table manners by yourself in Japan? Book your flight to Tokyo today to immerse yourself in the rich culture and exquisite cuisine of Japan. Experience firsthand the beauty of Japanese table manners and indulge in the finest culinary delights. Explore Traveloka for great deals on activities, flight , and hotel . Visit Traveloka for more information!

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A flight attendant’s guide to seat reclining etiquette.

By Niccolo Serratt

Image may contain Cleaning and Person

Flying is a stressful ordeal, and when it's possible—especially on a long-haul flight—people want to kick back and relax . But in today's tightly packed plane cabins, one passenger's comfort is often another's discomfort.

The moment a passenger decides to recline their seat on a plane, they will unavoidably take away some, if not most, of the personal space from the passenger sitting behind them. As a flight attendant with six years' experience working for a major international airline, I regularly deal with passengers arguing over when it's appropriate to exercise this right to recline.

I remember flying from Bangkok to Sydney when a passenger got up and began whacking the passenger in front of them with a rolled-up in-flight magazine simply for reclining their seat. Ask any flight attendant; we all have similar horror stories. (It doesn't help that recent years have seen an increasing number of disruptive passengers, according to Federal Aviation Administration data .)

Flight attendants take resolving any form of disruption very seriously: the well-being and safety of passengers is our top priority. In this case, for reclining seats , it really depends on what elements you have at play. Sometimes a conversation with both passengers suffices; other times you remove the offended passenger to a separate seat. Occasionally, you just have to put your foot down and remind everyone that certain types of behavior are simply unacceptable.

In my experience, a lot of the time, it’s rarely about the reclined seat—there are underlying motivations for the stress, and the reclined seat simply serves as a trigger. Traveling can be tiring and stressful , and sometimes people just need an excuse to vent their frustrations.

With the increase in disruptions related to seat reclining, more airlines have eliminated the ability to recline entirely (which also doubles as a cost-cutting measure). Nowadays, most low-cost carriers don't have seat recline, and airlines like Delta have reduced the seat recline pitch from four to two inches. Some passengers have even taken matters into their own hands by using devices that impede seat reclining, called “'knee defenders.” While this may appear to be a fun travel hack, we don’t recommend using the controversial gadget, which is banned by many airlines. (In 2014, it even caused United Airlines Flight 1462 from Newark to Denver to be diverted to Chicago after a fight erupted between two passengers over the use of such a device.)

Perhaps the best solution so far has been the introduction of shell seats to premium economy cabins. Used by airlines like Air France, Japan Airlines, and China Airlines, shell seats allow you to recline forward into your legroom instead of encroaching backward into the passenger behind you.

There are pros and cons to every potential solution, and the debate over seat reclining is unlikely to be resolved soon. There is a delicate balance between personal comfort and collective courtesy—as flight attendants, we ask passengers to navigate this balance with empathy and understanding.

When and how to recline your seat on a plane

Airplane seat recline has become a heavily polarized debate, with few people occupying middle ground. Some people don't care if you recline your seat because they will likely recline theirs, too. Others will make sure you know just how unhappy they are with your choice.

"Sure, you paid for the seat and its functionality, so yes, by all means, recline. However, passengers need to listen to the safety spiel and erect it when told to do so, like for meal service, taxi, take-off, and landing," says Jamie, a flight attendant for a Middle Eastern carrier.

To minimize disruption, there are three golden rules to seat reclining etiquette that passengers can follow:

  • Be courteous and ask:   Just as every door has a knob to open it, every seat has a button to recline it. Think of the recline button like a door knob; before you use it, “knock on the door” by asking the person behind you if it's okay to recline your seat.
  • Don't recline during meal service:  If you find someone's seat recline annoying, wait until you try eating with your back hunched and the meal tray pushing against your abdomen. Believe me, it's not pleasant. Respect your fellow travelers and keep your seat erect during meal service.
  • Use your judgment:  Not all flights require reclining, especially if it's short. No matter the length of the flight, my top tip is always to take a peek and find out who's sitting behind you. Maybe it's a mother traveling with an infant on her lap, or someone who's very tall, or a business traveler working from their laptop on the tray table. Some people won't mind, but for others, it makes a big difference. Put yourself in their shoes, and remember they, too, want to travel comfortably.

“Passengers need to be mindful of their recline and assess the situation. Recently, a passenger hastily reclined his seat and broke the passenger's laptop sitting behind him,” says one flight attendant working for a major European carrier. "These incidents can be avoided by asking and being mindful."

So, the next time you reach for that recline button, take a moment to think about the person behind you. A small courtesy can go a long way in making the skies a more relaxed experience for fellow passengers and flight attendants.

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A Guide to the Etiquette of British Afternoon Tea—and Where in London to Enjoy It

Tracing its roots to a 19th-century duchess, afternoon tea is moving into the present with contemporary remixes while retaining the historic charm that makes it a favorite among visitors..

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A tea set with a floral pattern in front of a round tiered tray with snacks

British afternoon tea comes with its own set of strict traditions and rules.

Photo by MO SHA/Shutterstock

Even if you know very little about England, you’re likely aware that teatime is a long-standing and cherished tradition, as synonymous with British culture as the Royals and pints at the pub. In my early 20s, I lived in West Kensington while working in the photo archive at a British fashion magazine. With little disposable income but a determination to embrace local culture, I often treated myself to afternoon tea. Sometimes, especially when visitors were in town, I booked a table at Fortnum & Mason or Claridge’s or the Savoy to partake in the highly civilized parade of delicate sandwiches, glossy pastries, and scones served alongside clouds of clotted cream and preserves and fat pots of tea.

But way more often I just popped into the Café in the Crypt at St. Martin-in-the-Fields church where, for a few pounds, I could sit in the subterranean space sipping English breakfast tea atop the ancient gravestones. Since moving back to the USA, I’ve returned to London dozens of times, and on every visit I engage in the quintessential tradition of afternoon tea.

A dining room with a domed glass ceiling and ornate furnishings

A posh trip to London wouldn’t be complete without an afternoon tea in a stylish dining room like this one at the Savoy.

Courtesy of Christian Lendl/Unsplash

Where did the afternoon tea ritual originate?

Tea is one of the world’s oldest beverages—beginning in China around 2700 B.C.E., according to legend—but England’s afternoon tea tradition only dates back to about 1840. Anna Maria Russell, Duchess of Bedford and one of Queen Victoria’s ladies-in-waiting, is widely credited as the creator. By the mid-19th century in England, gas lighting was ubiquitous in urban areas and in wealthier households, which inspired later evening meal times. The gap, then, between the midday meal and dinner had stretched too far for some, including the Duchess, who allegedly requested a cup of tea and some cake, bread, and butter in the late afternoon to quell her hunger. The request became a ritual, and throughout the Victorian era, its popularity spread throughout the drawing rooms and parlors of England’s high society.

From the 19th to the 20th century, there was a democratization of afternoon tea in England, transitioning from a purely upper-class custom to one more widely embraced across social classes. Contributing to the mass appeal: more leisure time and discretionary income in the middle class thanks to industrialization, and a proliferation of tea rooms and cafés in urban areas making afternoon tea more accessible and affordable to the general public.

Nowadays, you will also see “high tea” listed on menus, but it’s not synonymous with afternoon tea. With origins in working-class homes, it’s more of a meal—typically meat, vegetables, bread, and, of course, tea, served between 5 and 6 p.m.

What is an afternoon tea experience like today?

In tea rooms, swish hotels , and restaurants across the country, afternoon tea remains popular among tourists and locals alike. “People often have afternoon tea to celebrate occasions or catch up with friends,” says Piero Sottile, executive pastry chef at Shangri-La the Shard, London . “It’s considered a classic British experience that continues to be well loved.”

The food menu is usually a set selection of scones with clotted cream and jam, bite-size pastries, and savory finger sandwiches filled with ingredients like egg salad or smoked salmon. The sandwiches are customarily crust free and always made with precision.

“At the Dorchester , for nearly 100 years, we’ve celebrated the national tradition of serving afternoon tea,” says Martyn Nail, culinary director at the Mayfair luxury hotel. “We believe the perfect finger sandwich relies on two key elements: high-quality ingredients and expertly cut bread, with a two-thirds bread to one-third filling ratio.”

An afternoon tea spread that includes a tiered tray of snacks, two glasses of pink liquid, a plate of scones, and a replica of a skyscraper made of edible materials

The themed afternoon teas at the Shangri-La the Shard London often include edible replicas of the building in which the hotel is housed.

Courtesy of Shangri-La Hotels

In addition to their regular menus, restaurants and hotels often serve seasonal and themed teas to celebrate events like Mother’s Day or a Royal wedding. At Ting inside Shangri-La the Shard, the hotel’s 10th anniversary tea comes with Instagrammable bites like Big Ben–shaped pastries and a mousse-filled replica of the Shard (the 72-story, Renzo Piano–designed skyscraper in which the hotel is located) fashioned from delicately painted chocolate. Panoramic views of the Tower Bridge are the icing on the experience.

“Afternoon tea today is very popular on social media, so there is an emphasis on what looks great on camera these days,” Sottile says. There’s also more attention to variety, such as vegetarian options and, as Sottile notes, “an increased inclusion of international flavors and dishes into the menu.”

At the Nobu Hotel London Portman Square , for example, afternoon tea is infused with traditional Japanese ingredients, like wasabi and miso, while Indian-inspired afternoon teas abound in the city. At Colonel Saab in Covent Garden, the set menu includes dhokla sandwiches with mint chutney and cardamom-spiced saffron and rose macarons, alongside a choice of teas like turmeric citrus and spiced chai.

But prior to any multi-tiered platter of treats, you must select your drink of choice. Tea menus have expanded over the years, with many offering a signature blend and some offering dozens of options among black, green, oolong, and herbal teas, or tisanes. If the list feels overwhelming, an on-staff tea expert can help guide you.

A plate of scones with clotted cream and jam, in front of a tray of tea sandwiches

There’s a hot regional debate about which order you put toppings on a scone.

Photo by Lilly Trott/Shutterstock

What are the etiquette rules to know about drinking tea?

In keeping with the country’s reputation for honoring tradition, teatime comes with its own set of rules and customs. Some are the same you’d follow in any fine dining setting: unfold your napkin on your lap, be careful not to clink the sides of the teacup when stirring milk and sugar into your tea. Some, though, might surprise you. For instance, keep your pinkie down—raising it while sipping is considered bad manners. And add milk after pouring your tea. You might be surprised to hear that this rule has to be stated, but a small (passionate) faction insists on pouring milk into the cup first; it’s a holdover of early days when milk would be poured in first to protect cheaper ceramic dishware from cracking under the intense heat of the tea.

But the most eyebrow-raising rules involve the scones. “When enjoying scones, break them apart rather than cutting them with a knife,” says Sottile. “Use the accompanying jam and clotted cream generously, but there is a big debate on which goes first.”

In the good-natured but hotly contested regional fight on how to layer the clotted cream and preserves, the Devonshire method calls for cream first and the Cornish method calls for jam first. Whichever you choose, it’s all part of the time-honored English ritual of afternoon tea.

Four top places for afternoon tea in London

Ting at Shangri-La the Shard Try the hotel’s 10th anniversary tea, which has pastries in the shape of such iconic London sights as Big Ben.

Nobu Hotel London Portman Square Eastern and Western cultures and cuisines mesh in a menu that includes sushi cups, miso chips, freshly baked scones, and a wide variety of teas.

Colonel Saab Enjoy Indian-inspired tea and snacks in the former Holborn Town Hall.

The Dorchester Opened in 1931, this grand dame exudes luxury of a bygone era, but it’s not stuffy and even has an afternoon tea menu for kids .

Courtesy of Kessler Collection

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An early taste of Japan! 🇯🇵 Mahalo to the Honolulu Japanese Chamber of Commerce for providing a class on Japanese etiquette, including a visit from @HawaiiMBB legend Bob Nash 🌈🤙 #GoBows #SISTAHHOOD — Hawai'i Women's Basketball (@HawaiiWBB) June 1, 2024

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japanese travel etiquette

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japanese travel etiquette

While instinctive to most Japanese people, things like taking off shoes or bowing can feel like a whole new world for the unaccustomed traveler. Although not expected to become a master, learning the basic etiquette and protocols can be part of a rich travel experience and a great way to interact with local people.

Do take advantage of public transport. Do be quiet on the bullet and metro trains. Do use two hands to accept business cards. Do walk, drive and ride on the left. Do say "kanpai" when clinking glasses before drinking. Do embrace Japanese vending machines. Don't blow your nose loudly in public. Don't jaywalk.

In Japan, people stand in line for everything. Waiting for trains, restaurants, grand openings, etc. When you approach a line, take your place at the back. Do not cut in the line, even if your friend is holding your place further up. If you want to wait with your friend, you should both go to the back of the line. 5.

In the past few years, tourists in Japan have been hitting the headlines for bad behavior. YouTubers like Johnny Somali have even been arrested for nuisance actions, like trespassing and shouting offensive things at local people. Others have attempted to travel up and down the country without buying a ticket. So, what makes a good tourist?

1) PDA (Public Displays of Affection) & Greetings. Image Source: Canva. Handshakes, high-fives, hugs, and certainly kisses are far less common as a form of greeting in Japan. Though certainly not frowned upon, people have different comfort levels when it comes to displays of physical affection or intimacy. Be mindful of others' body language ...

Etiquette. Proper manners and consideration towards others are highly valued in Japan, and misbehaving tourists are increasingly causing frictions. In order not to annoy or offend the locals, foreign visitors should be familiar with at least the basic rules: Inside the house. On the streets.

The Japanese manners and etiquette dictate that you must clean your body before entering a bathtub. Only then you can soak and relax. You exit the bathtub, soap up and rinse. You must make sure no soap touches the water in the bath, as it must be kept absolutely crystal clear.

Sightseeing and shopping. Cutting lines is verboten in most countries, but in Japan, holding a space for friends or family members is also considered improper, according to Tokyo's manners ...

Meeting and greeting. Bowing Bow politely when you meet someone, thank them, or say goodbye. The depth, duration and number of bows is something non-Japanese aren't expected to understand and visitors are unlikely to offend if they don't do this perfectly. If a Japanese person bows to you, an incline of the head in return will usually suffice.

General manners and etiquette in Japan. Here are a few general manners to keep in mind when traveling to Japan. 1. Don't eat while you walk. In Japan, eating while you walk is considered sloppy and is often associated with a lack of manners. It's funny because I didn't realize how often we do this until we were in Japan and found ...

Common manners and customs in Japan include: 1. Eating Directly From Common Dishes. It's inappropriate to eat directly from common dishes. Put it on your plate first. It's best to collect a few things on your plate before eating. 2. Paying The Check. In Japan it's quite common to split checks amongst friends or even on a date.

— Will.G, Travel Consultant . Typically self-explanatory toilet slippers 2) Understand the onsen (Japanese hot springs) Bathing in an onsen (a hot spring bath), is one of our favourite pastimes, never mind it being a Japanese custom. It has such an extensive etiquette that we've devoted a whole post about how to onsen like a local. Unlike ...

Japan Travel Etiquette: 10 Dos and Don'ts in 2022. This service includes sponsored advertisements. Japan is famous for its customs and etiquette, and sometimes a stay in a new country can offer some specific challenges and surprises! Below is a list of 10 helpful dos and don'ts for those visiting Japan. Latest update : 2022.09.24. Japan is ...

1- DO's. Be Polite. Politeness may be the basis for other Japanese etiquette rules. It's noted that Japanese etiquette is greatly influenced by the concept of collectivism, which is characterized by fairness among people and prioritization of interests of the social group over individuals.

The Japanese are known to be the most polite and courteous people in the world, and put great value into societal manners and etiquette in the way they live their lives. In fact, the Tokyo Good Manners Project (TGMP) was launched in 2016 in an effort to promote and improve good manners and conduct in Tokyo with their public manner awareness ...

Japanese society is known for its politeness, which is why knowing a few key etiquette tips for travel in Japan can be really helpful. Its many etiquette rules can be daunting to anyone planning to visit Japan. While there's no need to get overly anxious about making social faux pas, noone should put their foot in it if it can be easily avoided

Japan is known for its highly structured society, governed by an unspoken set of strict etiquette rules. This can be daunting for newcomers, but fret not - the Japanese don't expect outsiders to know all the rules of the game, although a basic understanding is helpful. These Japanese etiquette tips will stand you in good stead.

Japanese customs, taboos, and traditions may be hard to understand at first. Before going to Japan, make sure to read our travel tips for public behavior. +34 93 547 88 66 » Mon-Fri 8 am to 8 pm (GMT+1) [email protected] » 24/7. Japan Rail Pass. Green Pass ... Also read: Japanese trains etiquette.

Here are a couple of useful phrases for getting help in an emergency or addressing a health concern. I have a seafood allergy. 21. Tasukete kudasai (tass-keh-teh kuu-da-sai) たけてください / 助けて下さい. "Please help me" - A good phrase to know when you're facing a difficult situation. "Tasukete" means "help" and ...

Edward Yagisawa. Learn about the different types of Japanese baths, the health benefits, how to enjoy bathing in an onsen, and the manners and .. 4 4. Culture. Etiquette at Shrines and Temples. Edward Yagisawa. Follow these easy steps to properly pay your respects at Japan's marvelous temples and shrines! 102 6. View All Articles.

Ring the bell (if there is one) 2 or 3 times to signal to the gods that you have arrived. Deeply bow twice (until you reach a 90 degree angle). Clap twice, with your left hand slightly in front. Pay your respects, remembering to thank the gods as well. Deeply bow once.

TL;DR: Over 31 million visitors need to navigate Japan's etiquette maze for a seamless experience. Public dining norms in Japan favor stationary snacking, not on-the-go munching. "Respecting ...

Here are some key elements of Japanese table manners: 1. Seating Arrangement. In formal dining settings, seating arrangements are often hierarchical, with the most esteemed guest seated closest to the host or at the head of the table. The arrangement may also take into account age, status, or professional rank.

Be courteous and ask: Just as every door has a knob to open it, every seat has a button to recline it. Think of the recline button like a door knob; before you use it, "knock on the door" by ...

The pillars of pool etiquette are evolving, according to Vitalii Andriianov, the pool-and-beach captain at the Setai hotel in Miami. When he started working there a decade ago, personal music ...

Tea is one of the world's oldest beverages—beginning in China around 2700 B.C.E., according to legend—but England's afternoon tea tradition only dates back to about 1840. Anna Maria Russell, Duchess of Bedford and one of Queen Victoria's ladies-in-waiting, is widely credited as the creator. By the mid-19th century in England, gas ...

The UH travel party is scheduled to depart on Tuesday, June 4 and will split the trip between Tokyo and Osaka, with a day trip to Kyoto included in the itinerary. ... Their preparations also included a class on Japanese customs and etiquette provided by the Honolulu Japanese Chamber of Commerce. The session included a visit from UH men's ...

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1200x600 UK princess-05-2020

2 night Mini cruise to Amsterdam

Mini cruise with breakfast from £99 for 2 people.

Duty free is back – why not take the opportunity to purchase your allowance whilst enjoying a mini cruise to Amsterdam with breakfast included on your outbound journey.

Enjoy excellent eateries and live entertainment onboard before spending the day exploring the Dutch Capital.

Travel 8th October 2024 – 31st December 2024 and book by 31st October 2024. Book online or via our contact centre on 08715229977 and quote “NE OFFERS”.

Please note: From 1st January 2024 the EU Emission Trading System tax applies. Click here for more information .

2 Nights Onboard

No baggage restrictions

Discover vibrant Amsterdam

Excellent onboard facilities

Mini cruise 8th October – 31st December 2024 from £99 for 2 people

Book by 31st October 2024

From Thursday – Saturday there is a surcharge of £25 per cabin

Includes bus transfers to/from Amsterdam City Centre

AN Ship Nov23 1200x600

Check-in opens

Check-in closes

Depart North Shields for Amsterdam

Amsterdam canal

Arrive in IJmuiden, Holland

Coach departs for Amsterdam city centre

Coach departs Amsterdam for IJmuiden terminal

Ship departs IJmuiden

Explorer's Kitchen breakfast buffet

Breakfast available onboard

Arrive in North Shields

September 2023 Sail and Save

Duty Free Shopping

Duty Free shopping is now available onboard our routes from the UK to Europe. Save up to 50% versus the high street on great products such as premium perfumes, cosmetics and alcohol. When you set sail with us, why not treat yourself too? Your unlimited baggage is waiting to be filled!

How to redeem

  • Click on ‘Book Now.’
  • Select voucher option, the number of people and your desired travel date and click on ‘view prices.’ Please note: for a mini cruise the return journey takes place one day after the outward journey.
  • Choose the desired cabin, possible meals and additional options.
  • Enter your credentials or sign in with an existing account
  • Enter your coupon code in the ‘Coupon Code’ field and click ‘Redeem.’
  • Choose a payment method for any extra charge for additional services and complete the booking.
  • You will now receive your booking number and shortly a booking confirmation by email.

Redeem your voucher code by 31st October 2024. All dates subject to availability and weekend supplement applies.

Our Restaurants

North Sea Bistro - Newcastle to Amsterdam

North Sea Bistro

North Sea Bistro offers an intimate and luxe dining experience, with a seasonal menu and stylish surroundings.

Explorers Kitchen - Newcastle to Amsterdam

Explorer's Kitchen

Explorer’s Kitchen is our all-you-can-eat buffet restaurant, boasting international cuisine for every taste.

Coffee Crew - Newcastle to Amsterdam

Coffee Crew Café

Head to our café, Coffee Crew, for Starbucks® coffee, tea, bottled drinks and freshly baked sweet treats.

Cabins Onboard

NewCabin Seaview DoubleBed

Double Bed Cabins

Our double bed cabins are designed with couples in mind. Sail between Newcastle and Amsterdam in this comfortable, en suite cabin with inside and sea view rooms available.

NewCabin Seaviw 5Berth

Sea View Cabins

Sail from Newcastle to Amsterdam with front row seats to the beautiful North Sea from your en suite, sea view cabin. Cabins can sleep up to 5 people in bunk beds.

NewCabin EconomyCabin

Economy Cabins

Ideal for the budget-friendly traveller, our comfortable, en suite, economy cabins from Newcastle and Amsterdam sleep 2 – 4 people in bunk beds.

NewCabin PetFriendly

Pet Friendly Cabins

Travel onboard our DFDS ferry in a pet friendly cabin from Newcastle and Amsterdam, which can accommodate up to 4 people and 2 medium sized dogs.

Onboard Experience

North Sea Bistro - Newcastle to Amsterdam

Food & Dining

Our unique dining experiences onboard include an international buffet and a luxurious à la carte restaurant when you sail between Newcastle and Amsterdam.

NewCabin Hero

Our range of en suite cabins provide accommodation to suit every taste and budget on a ferry between the UK and Holland.

Drinks in the bar onboard Newcastle-Amsterdam


Choose from partying the night away on a short break to Amsterdam, or simply relaxing with a drink in hand.


Duty Free Shopping at Sea

Join us on a ferry to Holland and enjoy unrivalled shopping facilities with savings of up to 50% against the high street.

Family onboard Newcastle-Amsterdam

Family Travel

Sea travel is very exciting for children and our ferries provide a range of entertainment for all ages.

King Seaways Newcastle-Amsterdam

Ship Overview

Discover everything there is to know about King Seaways and Princess Seaways.

Wildlife watching experience onboard Newcastle-Amsterdam

Mini Cruise to Amsterdam – what to expect

Step onboard your crossing to Amsterdam and be prepared to relax. Indulge in some duty free shopping, sample some delicious cuisine in our choice of restaurants, sit back with a drink and enjoy some live entertainment in our bars and onboard club.

Following a peaceful sleep in your en suite cabin, you’ll arrive at our port in Ijmuiden and hop on to a bus transfer to Amsterdam to enjoy up to 5 hours in the Dutch capital before heading back onboard for your return crossing.

Whether you opt for our mini cruise offer, mini cruise with breakfast one way, or mini cruise with breakfast and dinner one way, we can guarantee it will be a trip to remember.


Duty Free Allowances

DFDS offer unlimited baggage allowance which means you can fill your boots with great duty free deals.

What you can bring back to the UK

  • 18 Litres of wine
  • 42 litres of beer
  • Up to £390 worth of non-alcoholic goods

For more information on what you can bring into the UK and Europe check out our Duty Free FAQs.


Championing the Seas!  

We're elated to announce that DFDS has once again retained its title as Europe’s Leading Ferry Operator at the 2024 World Travel Awards.

This accolade wouldn’t have been possible without you, our loyal passengers. Thank you for recognising the hard work of our exceptional team members who are dedicated to ensuring each voyage is as exceptional as the next.

Your ongoing support is the anchor to our success.

Expedia Rewards is now One Key™

Elektrostal, visit elektrostal, check elektrostal hotel availability, popular places to visit.

  • Electrostal History and Art Museum

You can spend time exploring the galleries in Electrostal History and Art Museum in Elektrostal. Take in the museums while you're in the area.

  • Cities near Elektrostal

Photo by Ksander

  • Places of interest
  • Yuri Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center
  • Central Museum of the Air Forces at Monino
  • Peter the Great Military Academy
  • Ramenskii History and Art Museum
  • Bykovo Manor
  • Balashikha Arena
  • Malenky Puppet Theater
  • Balashikha Museum of History and Local Lore
  • Pekhorka Park
  • Saturn Stadium
  • Orekhovo Zuevsky City Exhibition Hall
  • Noginsk Museum and Exhibition Center


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  1. DFDS cruise trip Copenhagen to Oslo in 2 days

  2. DFDS Cruise from Copenhagen to Oslo Trip #dfds #shorts #oslo #cph #cruisetour #cruise

  3. Copenhagen to Oslo journey by DFDS Cruise ship.2023-11-01

  4. On board the DFDS

  5. Copenhagen DFDS cruise to Oslo

  6. #dfds #cruiseship #cruise Mini cruise Newcastle to Amsterdam


  1. Conference At Sea

    A two-day conference cruise provides the perfect conditions to combine the social with the professional while experiencing the metropolitan city of Copenhagen. ... [email protected]. facilities and activities. ... Combine both professional and social on a Conference cruise with DFDS. Our modern conference rooms with fantastic sea views mean ...

  2. Conferences and Meetings

    Business and Corporate Events. Our modern spacious cruise ferries offer a unique and memorable setting for any business meeting, conference or corporate event. Whatever your requirements, we have a space that will suit your needs and impress your attendees. Priority boarding for conference guests and Commodore Class.

  3. What is a conference cruise?

    Conference Cruise with DFDS We offer a unique combination of professional frameworks for the professional with a sea of opportunities at the end of the agenda. With us you get everything from culinary experiences in our restaurants, spectacular views from the deck, entertainment and opportunities to make a bargain in the tax free shop.

  4. Conferences, meetings & hotel stays

    On a Club Cruise there is plenty of time for socializing, while enjoying the good view and the wide range of social activities on board. Note: There must be a minimum of 8 participants for the journey to be completed. Departure can take place Sunday-Wednesday. Possibility to bring bus for surcharge. Contact us on +45 33 42 30 05 or e-mail event ...

  5. Konferencer og Møder

    Afhold din konference om bord på et DFDS-krydstogtskib næste gang. Her finder du alle de oplysninger om konference- og mødefaciliteter, I har brug for, samt en bred vifte af teambuildingaktiviteter.

  6. Tag på KonferenceCruise

    Tag forretningsagendaen med om bord på DFDS' skib fra København til Oslo, og udskift det traditionelle møde- eller konferencelokale med et i maritime rammer. ... "Vi har i forbindelse med et Salgs Kick Off og konference for 150 personer benyttet DFDS båden fra København til Oslo T/R. Alt fra bookning, praktiske detaljer, gennemgang af ...

  7. DFDS Business Cruise på LinkedIn: Konferencer og Møder

    Start jeres næste møde eller konference på havet og tag væk fra de sædvanlige rammer. Med DFDS får I hjælp til at afholde firmaarrangementer til søs.

  8. DFDS Seaways Konference Cruise

    DFDS Seaways Konference Cruise. 3.8 ud af 5 (Baseret på 3 anmeldelser) Anmeld DFDS Seaways Konference Cruise. Sundkrogsgade 11, 2100 København Ø. Billeder. Kort. Beskrivelse. Faciliteter. Lokaler. Et Konference Cruise hos DFDS Seaways er for firmaer, der, under storslåede rammer, ønsker at isolere sig fra omverdenen og fordybe sig i emner ...

  9. Konference cruise DFDS

    Konference cruise DFDS. Der er ingen planlagte afgange. Beskrivelse. Cruise & Business - 3 dages konferencetur med DFDS • Buskørsel Sjælland - København t/r med 4-stjernet turistbus • 'Start mødet i bussen'-koncept med bl.a. PowerPoint om bord • Bussen er tilrådighed under besøget i Oslo, til etc. sightseeing ...

  10. Duty Free Mini Cruise to Amsterdam

    Take a mini cruise to Amsterdam with Groupon from just £85 for 2. Enjoy 2 nights onboard in an en suite cabin and spend the day exploring the Dutch capital. ... Travel onboard our DFDS ferry in a pet friendly cabin from Amsterdam to Newcastle, which can accommodate up to 4 people and 2 medium sized dogs. Onboard Experience. Food & Dining.

  11. Duty Free Mini Cruise to Amsterdam

    Take a mini cruise to Amsterdam with Groupon from just £85 for 2. Enjoy 2 nights onboard in an en suite cabin and spend the day exploring the Dutch capital. ... We're elated to announce that DFDS has once again retained its title as Europe's Leading Ferry Operator at the 2024 World Travel Awards. This accolade wouldn't have been possible ...

  12. Up to 50% OFF Amsterdam mini cruises with DFDS

    Book a DFDS mini cruise to Holland departing between the 1st of July and the 31st of October 2024 and save up to 50% OFF with Direct Ferries!. Enjoy a 2-night mini cruise to Amsterdam (departing from Newcastle), which includes 2 nights onboard with a comfortable cabin, live onboard entertainment, return city centre coach transfers and up to 5 hours ashore to explore Amsterdam - one of Europe ...

  13. Cruise ship boarding DFDS to Denmark from Norway trip #travel ...

    About Press Copyright Contact us Creators Advertise Developers Terms Privacy Policy & Safety How YouTube works Test new features NFL Sunday Ticket Press Copyright ...

  14. Corporate Cruises

    Your ongoing support is the anchor to our success. Find out more. Prices are subject to availability. Telephone booking fees apply. Terms and conditions apply. Experience a different conference in an incredibly inspiring maritime environment with panoramic sea views. We have meeting rooms with room for up to 210 people onboard a DFDS ferry.

  15. Dfds Divests Oslo Cruise Ferry Route to Enhance Transport Focus

    INVESTOR NEWS no. 42 - 10 June 2024 DFDS has today entered into an agreement to divest the Oslo-Frederikshavn-Copenhagen (OFC) cruise ferry route to Gotlandsbolaget. Completion of the agreement is expected in October 2024. The OFC route annually carries more than 700,000 passengers between Norway and Denmark. The route deploys two cruise ferries and has just over 800 sea- and land-based employees.

  16. dfds konference cruise

    VIKINGBUS REJSER » destinationer; Konference cruise DFDS Der er ingen planlagte afgange Beskrivelse. Cruise & Business - 3 dages konferencetur med DFDS • Buskørsel Sjælland

  17. DFDS Ferry Review: Our Mini Cruise To Olso (Best Rooms, Tips & Photos!)

    The Copenhagen to Oslo ferry price for the lowest, cheapest rooms are around €210.00 for two people. Our nice cabin was about €450.00 for us two (including breakfast). Considering we drank a lot of Aperol spritz and had that breakfast, I think we only ended up spending about €100-150 more for the nice cabin.


    DFDS has today entered into an agreement to divest the Oslo-Frederikshavn-Copenhagen (OFC) cruise ferry route to Gotlandsbolaget. Completion of the agreement is expected in October 2024.

  19. DFDS Seaways

    DFDS Seaways is a Danish shipping company that operates passenger and freight services across northern Europe. ... Now 2 new ferries "Aura Seaways" and " Luna Seaways" cruise Klaipėda - Karlshamn line. In September 2019, DFDS had announced that it would add two new ships, ...

  20. Dzerzhinsky, Russia: All You Must Know Before You Go (2024

    Dzerzhinsky Tourism: Tripadvisor has 345 reviews of Dzerzhinsky Hotels, Attractions, and Restaurants making it your best Dzerzhinsky resource.

  21. State Housing Inspectorate of the Moscow Region

    State Housing Inspectorate of the Moscow Region Elektrostal postal code 144009. See Google profile, Hours, Phone, Website and more for this business. 2.0 Cybo Score. Review on Cybo.

  22. NE Offers

    Travel onboard our DFDS ferry in a pet friendly cabin from Newcastle and Amsterdam, which can accommodate up to 4 people and 2 medium sized dogs. Onboard Experience. ... Whether you opt for our mini cruise offer, mini cruise with breakfast one way, or mini cruise with breakfast and dinner one way, we can guarantee it will be a trip to remember.

  23. Elektrostal, Russia: All You Must Know Before You Go (2024

    A mix of the charming, modern, and tried and true. See all. Apelsin Hotel. 43. from $48/night. Apart Hotel Yantar. 2. from $28/night. Elektrostal Hotel.

  24. Visit Elektrostal: 2024 Travel Guide for Elektrostal, Moscow ...

    Cities near Elektrostal. Places of interest. Pavlovskiy Posad Noginsk. Travel guide resource for your visit to Elektrostal. Discover the best of Elektrostal so you can plan your trip right.