Cultural Tips For Londoners

Rachel Holdsworth
By Rachel Holdsworth Last edited 93 months ago
Cultural Tips For Londoners

Visit Britain are getting in early and training us to be polite to people from Foreign when they come over for the Olympics. As though Londoners aren't used to living, working and playing alongside people from all over the world - never mind the tourism industry, who these guides are aimed at - we apparently need a bit more work to make us as friendly and culturally aware as the Dutch.

Here are some of the things to remember next time you're hanging out in Trafalgar Square:

  • Don't pour wine backwards for an Argentinian. Though altering the laws of physics will generally astound other nationalities (seriously, what does this mean?)
  • Don't ask someone from a strict Muslim nation if they want bacon with their eggs. Because that would make you an idiot
  • Don't mention the (1845-6) war with America to a Mexican. First, you may want to find out what the 1845-6 war was about (Texas, basically)
  • Some countries use different words for things. South Africans call traffic lights 'robots', which would be cool
  • Call us insular little Englanders if you will, but surely visitors flocking to these shores for the Olympics will have some notion that the average Brit on the street, or on reception in their hotel, probably won't have an in-depth knowledge of their national history. We're sure the usual rules of 'being polite and helpful' will see us through (and those who told Visit Britain they wanted a 'more exhuberant welcome' might be happier in Italy).

    We also think this cultural sensitivity thing works two ways, so what would your tips for Olympic visitors be?

    Last Updated 12 August 2010