Cultural differences between Asians and Westerners

Etiquette Differences

Even a simple handshake protocol is different.
  • For some Muslim ladies any physical contact is improper, including a handshake.
  • In entire Asia the Dutch double kiss is very wrong.
  • At Sumatra a handshake is quite common, but should be followed by a brief touch of the hart. It shows that the other person is close to your heart. A 'bare' handshake will raise some questions.
In Dutch culture it is inappropriate to point with the index finger. In Asia it's rude. A civilised Asian points with the thumb on top of a fist.
Ask the Bill
In Asia you should write a imaginary bill in the air to ask for the bill. It is a bit similar to the Dutch gesture of counting money.
Give & Receive
A civilised Asian will use both hands when receiving. In Holland two hands stretched out show improper greediness.