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How People Greet Each Other Around The World

Do you give a hug, kiss on the cheek, or handshake?

There are a ton of unspoken rules ingrained in our culture when it comes to greeting someone in America. And personal behavior can be hard to describe — like thinking about your breathing or how to ride a bike. But when one violates the unspoken rules of saying “hello,” they can come off as rude or make someone feel really uncomfortable.


The rules for greeting people in America aren’t etched in stone. When you meet someone of the opposite sex, sometimes it’s socially acceptable to give them a hug, and other times a handshake will do. Some close male friends will only shake hands, while others are comfortable giving a big hug to someone they hardly know. It all comes down to having a good sense of who you’re interacting with and the context.

In WatchCut’s new video, “Greetings Around the World,” you’ll learn how people from Berlin to New Delhi greet one another. In some cultures, it’s acceptable to kiss people on the cheek or to give a hug or a religious greeting, while in other places these responses would be considered rude. How do you greet someone in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, or Paris? Watch the video and see.

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