Familiarize yourself with essential local etiquette in Myanmar helps you get around the country without being afraid of getting things wrong. These below need-to-know understandings of Burma’s customs and etiquette are considered a must to facilitate a great Myanmar trips.
– Dress appropriately: Myanmar is just escaping from years of isolation and therefore, its dressing standards are different from Western countries. We hardly see people exposing their knees or shoulders. Almost all locals dress traditional costumes. To be more particular, while men wear longyi, women dress htamein.
– Avoid politics-related topics: As Burma has just evolved from decades of isolation, people often keep away from discussing political issues. Hence, don’t stir up political conversations.
– Know some easy local words or phrases: You get to know more local people and easily win their heart if you are able to speak some local languages. Read Useful Words & Phrases for Visitors to Myanmar.
– Always smile: Wherever you travel, a smile is a signal of showing your pleasant attitude to listeners. A smile helps you get close to locals and expose your hospitality to them.
– Behave well in pagodas or temples: Burma is the land of faith and centuries-old temples. Like other Asian countries, it is necessary to respect elders you meet, monks and even the Buddha in temples. Myanmar community has its own sets of codes that suit each context. The best way is to follow locals and do other locals do.
– Mind your hand of giving and receiving money: Giving and receiving money with your right hands become the norm in Myanmar culture. Please keep in mind that to behave well in this country.
– Mind your body languages: Along with verbal languages, body language is considered important in this culture. Burma follows specific codes of Buddhism. Head is regarded as the scared part of the body, and do not touch someone on their head.
– Tipping: Tipping is acceptable but not a must. Therefore, there is no need to feel awkward when not leaving a tip in hotels or restaurants.