Thursday, August 1, 2013

Dos and Donts Switzerland

Dos Switzerland:

  • do use your fork to cut food such as salad and potatoes instead of a knife;
  • do break bread with your hand, but most other food should be eaten with utensils;
  • do eat everything off your plate and sample a little bit of everything, especially when dining at someone's home;
  • do put your knife and fork side by side at the 5:25 position when you're done eating to indicate that you are finished;
  • do give gifts such as books, candy, chocolate, pastries, wine, or whiskey;
  • do shake hands upon meeting someone. Shake hands with all who are present, including children.

Donts Switzerland:

  • don't drink until after the first toast. The first toast is always given by the host;
  • don't  rest your hands in your lap during a meal. Keep your hands on the table, but keep your elbows off the table!;
  • don't ask for salt and pepper if it's not already on the table;
  • don't smoke while eating;
  • don't feel obligated to tip. A service charge is included in restaurants and hotels. However, in a more expensive restaurant, it is customary to round the bill up or leave a few extra Swiss Francs;
  • don't give anything sharp as a gift, such as knives or scissors. This signifies severing off the friendship;
  • don't  give red roses or carnations, as they signify romantic intentions. White chrysanthemums and white lilies should be avoided too, because they're for funerals. Flowers should always be given in odd numbers;
  • don't  address someone by their first name until invited to do so. Use surnames and titles instead;
  • don't speak loudly in public, especially on a cell phone.

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