Japanese Table Manners: Common Mistakes Westerners Do About Japans Culture

Japans culture: Japanese table Manners, the dining etiquette of Food in Tokyo and traditional culture of Japan.


Avoid the Most common mistakes people do about the culture of Japan.Coming over for a business meeting or for teaching English in Japan?It will make all the difference in the world if you know a few basic customs to avoid embarrassing yourself and your Japanese hosts.

See More: Culture Of Japan – 10 common mistakes westerners do about the culture of Japan

See Also: Japanese Business Etiquette

Fun Facts About The Dining Etiquette Of Japans Culture

  • Sticking your chopsticks straight up in a bowl of rice is a custom done at funerals to honor the dead. So try to avoid it unless you want to evoke unpleasant memories.
  • Stabbing your food with the chopsticks is also considered poor manners in the culture of Japan. I know, I know… it’s really tempting to do it when trying to grab greasy Tonkatsu meat bolls (yummy traditional Japanese food), but avoid it.
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  • Don’t pass traditional Japanese foods with your chopsticks to someone else. After all, they were in your mouth. There is usually a communal pair that you return to the main serving dish after you’re finished serving. If there isn’t a communal pair, use the wide end (gripping part) to take food from the communal plate.
  • Wooden throw-away chopsticks that you snap apart, sometimes splinter when you break them. Avoid the temptation to rub them together to remove the splinters. At the end of the meal it’s considered good Manners to slip them back into their paper sleeve.
  • To eat a bowl of rice or soup, lift the bowl with one hand. Eat the ingredients with chopsticks, and sip the soup out of the bowl directly. It is considered good manners in the culture of Japan to make slurping noises while eating noodles.
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Tokyo Trip Checklist

  • To make sure you have all the important things covered see my first-time-in-Tokyo guide
  • Get your 1,2 or 3-day Tokyo Unlimited Subway Pass to easily get around Tokyo
  • If you want to travel on bullet trains you can save big with a Japan Rail Pass. Here’s why is worth it.
  • You’ll need a prepaid sim or Portable WIFI to stay connected in Tokyo.
  • Check out my detailed Tokyo packing list to make sure you’re prepared.
  • The best site to book hotels in Tokyo is almost always Booking.com. And remember to book early, especially during busy times.
  • For travel insurance (which you need) Word Nomads offer great coverage in Japan and are highly recommended.

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