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

Janette Lemme': Although I come from a very different world and am more than twice your...

Cambogia Ultra: Hmm it seems like your site ate my first comment (it was extremely...

Roger: My little family and I were in Amsterdam in early July and thoroughly enjoyed...

Paul Farrugia: Cheers Roger!

Caroline Macomber: Thanks for the thoughts! Good insight.

Roger: The media can be very helpful, but don’t just take the media’s word...

B Parekh: Very inspiring! Thanks for sharing your travel lessons

Kathryn Platine: I’m Katey, a podcast coordinator at Interview Connections and...

Erik: Zona Verde is, I think, Theroux’s best travel stuff in at least a decade....

Roger: I’m definitely going to give Zona Verde a good looking at once I get...

SPONSORED BY :



CATEGORIES

TRAVEL LINKS

ARCHIVES

RECENT ENTRIES

Vagabonding Case Study: Chris Backe
The top five gifts travel has given me
Helping You Find the Best Airfare Option for You
Vagabonding Field Report: Escaping to the real Hawaii
When you travel more slowly, you make stronger connections
Finding new perspectives on familiar places
10 Sizzling Hot Travel Tips from Sir Francis Bacon
What I Remember Most – Meals with Friends
Does news media effect your wanderlusting spirit?
Vagabonding Field Report: Having a Baby at Home in Costa Rica


Subscribe to this blog's feed
Follow @rolfpotts