Laos is one country that’s rich in heritage and traditions, and being respectful of these beliefs will earn you respect amongst the natives.
So beware of these 5 ways to offend the locals, without even knowing it!
1. Don’t Wear a Skimpy Bikini
If you plan on taking a swim in one of the world’s greatest bodies of water, cover up! Most Laotians wear shorts and T-shirts when they’re in the water, so skimpy bikinis and bathing suits are a no-no.
2. Don’t Touch Strangers
Laotians appreciate a big, warm smile. They also expect you to greet them by joining your hands together in a praying gesture. But touching, other than a handshake between males, is considered embarrassing to the natives.
3. Don’t Raise Your Voice
Raising your voice in public and showing anger towards a Laotian will result in them calmly walking away. It’s best to keep a level head in all situations if you want to resolve your problems.
4. Don’t Touch a Monk! (Especially If You’re Female)
Monks are well-respected in Laos, and they should be treated with dignity and honor. You should always be cautious when it comes to your interactions. Women, especially, are prohibited from touching monks’ shoes and robes.
5. Don’t Stand Tall While Walking Past the Elderly
The polite thing to do when passing a seated elder is to crouch by ducking your head down below them. This is the ultimate sign of respect, and it lets them know that you don’t think you’re above them.
Which one of these surprised you the most?