Return to Home Page

November 15, 2012

Prepare for Cultural Challenges in Asia

Photo Credit: Flickr/Instant Vantage

I came across an interesting article on making the right first impression in Asia. The author goes through a number of countries, from Japan to South Korea, Thailand and India, giving a few suggestions on giving that important, successful first impression, party starter, or whatever you want to call it.
Because indeed, traveling in countries with particular and exclusive cultures as you may find in Asia, you need to do a bit of background work to get started right and enjoy your traveling to the max.

A couple weeks ago I published a similar post on Vagabonding, receiving a number of different angry comments as I colorfully criticized foreign backpackers for their disrespectful behavior upon entering Malaysia, a multicultural, albeit predominantly Muslim nation. I am far from taking up the matter again, but I would like to stress it once more: as a long term resident in several Asian countries, I have to agree with the article’s author. Making a first impression in Asia requires “some grueling firsthand experience”.  For example, when I was a language teacher in China, it took me quite a while to understand how to fulfill the stereotypical requirements my employer had about white foreigners… including being tacitly accused of an “insatiable sexual appetite towards anything that moves”!!! Thus, in order to come home with a better travel experience and an increased knowledge of the country, try to make an effort and make some research before you embark on an Asian adventure; for example, once in Thailand, do not mistake their smile for a complacent show of appreciation for your “farangness”. Know your people, and you will have extremely better experiences in their exotic Asian territories. And as biased as it may sound, make true lasting friendships.

If you have traveled or lived in Asia before, what do you think?

Posted by | Comments (1) 
Category: Asia, Destinations, Notes from the collective travel mind, Vagabonding Advice

Leave a Reply

Main

Bio

Books

Stories

Essays

Video

Interviews

Events

Writers

Marco

Paris

Vagabonding.net

Contact


Vagabonding Audio Book at Audible.com

Marco Polo Didnt Go There
Rolf's new book!


Vagabonding
   Vagabonding

RECENT COMMENTS

Best cheap protein powder: If you desire to increase your know-how just keep visiting...

jcp thousand oaks hair salon: At Supercuts, our designers are a few of the finest been...

Selma: Good information. Lucky me I ran across your blog by accident (stumbleupon)....

Gerald: If such is your thought, then the latest news of the US ending the 50 year...

Andrea Kirkby: Agreed that the fogginess can make winter Europe tricky to visit. I find...

Roger: I spent six winters in London in the 1980s and early 90s, and I know what you...

Roger: The more we want the world to be accessible by commercial airplanes, global...

Jess Canadian: Great interview, Raymond! You are an inspiration. Thank you for sharing...

Penny: Hey fools and Ralph, Ron Wood & M. Jagger, Bono & Ron Wood – AKA...

Andrea Kirkby: Great article! Two other suggestions for making sense of big museums. 1....

SPONSORED BY :



CATEGORIES

TRAVEL LINKS

ARCHIVES

RECENT ENTRIES

What adults can learn when traveling with their parents
Vagabonding Case Study: Kristin Addis
Korea’s no-man’s land
Pros and Cons of Off-Peak Europe Travel
Vagabonding Case Study: Jennifer Doré Dallas
“Authenticity” is often a pointless fetish for travelers
Traditional Christmas in Europe
Being vegetarian on the road
Teen travel- more than being “thankful for what you have”
Vagabonding Field Report: Sharing a Simple Meal with a Humble Family


Subscribe to this blog's feed
Follow @rolfpotts