May 18,2017 MANNERS IN KYOTO
To truly enjoy your holiday abroad, it is important to familiarize your-self with some of the country’s basic customs. This is particularly true for Kyoto, a city that welcomes a great number of foreign tourists every year. It is important to respect the lo-cal laws and customs to ensure that everyone can enjoy a trouble free and pleasant stay. Please take note of the signs posted in shrines and temples so as to avoid doing or say-ing anything that may be considered offensive. If you are unsure of some-thing, a friendly English speaking staff member is never too far away.
PLEASE RESPECT THE MAIKOS’ PRIVACY
Maikos walking down kagai (gei-sha district) are in the middle of their work. Shouting after them and taking photos like paparazzi is rude. Please don’t hold them up.
SHOES OFF ON TATAMI
To the Japanese the straw tatami mat is a symbol of the traditional Japanese tearoom and conveys the image of cleanliness. When entering a Japanese-style room, please wear socks or stockings.
LAST MINUTE RESTAURANT CANCELLATIONS
When booking a table, the restaurant not only reserves seats but also carefully prepares a series of ingredients and fresh produce in advance. Please don’t put this effort to waste. You might be charged a cancellation fee.
Finishing everything on your plate is a sign of respect for the food but also shows appreciation for the person who prepared it. Only order as much as you can actually eat.
QUEUE-JUMPINGIS AN ABSOLUTE NO-GO!
Whether it is to pay respects at the local shrine or entering a shop, Japanese people will always wait in line. If you arrive after someone, make sure to join the end of the queue, even if you are in a hurry.
THROW YOUR RUBBISH IN THE BIN OR BRING IT HOME
It is a custom in Japan to keep public spaces as beautiful as possible. Hence, the etiquette is to bring all your rubbish home with you. You may of course use any public bins you come across or ask a shop owner if you may make use of their bin.
PARK YOUR BICYCLE IN DESIGNATED AREA
Please note that parking on the footpath is illegal. Bicycles parked on the footpath are considered a nuisance to pedestrians and there is a high probability that your bicycle will be towed away by Kyoto City Services.
RED STOP! RESPECT THE TRAFFIC LIGHTS
In order to prevent any accidents, do not cross the street anywhere else than on a zebra-crossing. It is also forbidden to begin crossing when the green light is flashing and about to turn red.
SMOKING IS PROHIBITED ON THE STREET
Smoking on the street isextremely dangerous. Embers may inadvertently cause injury to people nearby or burn their clothing. Smoke from cigarettes may also affect the health of people near you. Smoking is prohibited on the streets of Kyoto.