Every country has its own way of greeting people, and these vary depending on situation, familiarity, and setting. First impressions count and regular travelers should have some idea of what to expect as you jet-set across the globe. We’re talking non-verbal greetings and gestures here, not how to say “hello” in hundreds of languages. Knowing which gestural greetings are acceptable, and those that are not, could be the difference between the negative or positive perception you’ll leave behind.
1. Shake It Off
The handshake is one of the most common forms of greeting worldwide. While in the US either gender can offer up a firm handshake, in countries like New Zealand, Italy, and the United Kingdom, generally women get the ball rolling with a lighter handshake. Clasping forearms is preferred over shaking hands in Colombia.