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While not burping at the table might seem like the obvious polite thing to do, did you know that cancelling a dinner reservation is frowned upon? Or that you should wear slippers to the bathroom? This handy illustrated guide to dining etiquette in Japan will help you avoid any faux pas.
1. Don’t stick your chopsticks up in your rice – that’s only for funerals.
2. You’ll be given a hot, damp towel at the start of your meal.
Wipe your hands first, then your face if you like.
3. Japanese tea and drinking water are free of charge – drink up!
4. Order the chef’s omakase set menu – best price and the best taste.
5. Don’t cancel your reservation at short notice – a big cultural no-no!
6. It’s dining etiquette to let them know your dietary requirements
in advance, no-one likes surprises.
7. Pour beer for your friends (not yourself!) – “Kampai!” (that’s cheers in Japanese).
8. Use the provided slippers in the restaurant restroom.
Don’t forget to take them off when you return to your table!
9. Be on time for your reservation – punctuality rules in Japan.
10. Give your noodles a loud slurp!
It’s not rude – it actually conveys appreciation of your meal.
11. Don’t burp, munch audibly or blow your nose at the table – it’s not the done thing.
12. At the end of your meal, put the lids back on dishes
and rest your chopsticks on the holder
nice and neatly as the meal began.
All this talk of food is making us hungry! Pick from our Food & Drink experiences to flex your dining etiquette knowledge and break bread (or slurp noodles) with the locals.