What Every Visitor Should Know About Etiquette in Japan

It’s important to mind your manners when you’re immersing yourself in a foreign culture. Whether you’re going to Japan or just going to a Japanese steakhouse for dinner, it’s nice to be familiar with proper etiquette. If you want to make a good impression, read on for a look at what every visitor should know about etiquette in Japan.

Eating on the Go

In the United States, it’s perfectly normal to see someone with a slice of pizza in one hand and a cell phone in the other walking down the street. In Japan, however, this is not a usual occurrence. Rather than eating on the go, it’s customary to save the food until you get to your destination. You might even see people drinking their whole bottle of water or soda before walking away from the vending machine. Eating and drinking isn’t even allowed on Japanese public transportation.

Chopstick Use

It might take some time to get used to using chopsticks—mastering this skill doesn’t come easy to everyone. No matter how skilled or clueless you are when it comes to using chopsticks, the way you set them down actually makes a big difference in terms of etiquette. Instead of leaving them sticking straight up out of your food, lay them flat across the bowl or use a chopstick rest. Passing food from one plate to another using chopsticks is considered disrespectful as well, so if you’re going to share food, use the back ends of your sticks.

Finish Your Dish

It’s against Japanese culture to waste, especially when it comes to food. If you visit Japan or dine in a Japanese restaurant, don’t pick parts of your meal out and put them to the side. You can also score some extra etiquette points by trying some of every dish.

Now that you know how to practice the proper etiquette, try out your manners at a Japanese restaurant serving San Jose. Call House of Genji at (408) 453-8120 or look at our website if you’re interested in enjoying some fine Japanese dining.

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