Manners and Etiquettes in England

Here are some manners and etiquettes that gentlemen and ladies should know.

When to arrive at a host's house if invited?

If you are lucky enough to be invited to an English household, do carry some small gift with you. Some gift ideas are box of chocolates, flowers & wine. Personal items like shirts should not be gifted to non family.

If you are invited between 7 to 7:30 pm, its good manners not to reach at sharp 7 when the hosts may be struggling to finish their preparations. At the same time, its also not good manners to reach at 7:30 since by that time, your hosts would have started wondering whether you are coming or not. Best thing to do is to reach around 7:20 pm giving your hosts enough time to prepare.

If you inviting someone to your home, it is considered polite to ask for any food restrictions like veg / non veg etc.

Nose picking in public:

Nose picking in public is frowned upon. If you have cold, go to a washroom or gently wipe your nose with a tissue.

Keeping feet up in a train:

Do not keep your feet on train seats, its not acceptable behaviour. Even in offices, do not show the sole of your shoes by keeping them on desk. Its not acceptable.

Opening doors:

If you flung open a door, do check if someone is following you. If there is someone, keep the door open and leave it to close only when ther person is through. If someone else has opened the door for you, do speed up walking a bit and do say "Thank you".

Saying thank you and sorry:

If you have not said sorry and thank you couple of times in a day, its considered a foul in England.

Jokes apart, use those 2 phrases generously. When you get off from a bus or a taxi, do say thank you to the driver.

And no, it's not necessary to do that to a train driver, we are not that polite!


Get used to the friendly terms / greetings:

When you go out shopping vegetables in small markets, you may hear phrases like 'what do you want my love', 'thank you darling' - get used to such phrases, and do not take it literally.

Manners in office:

Talk on phone on low tone.

When leaving the office in the evening (and if the office is small with few people only), if there is a security guard, do say "good night". It is possible he may not say something back but will smile and acknowledge with head for sure.

England Trains - Information on getting and reading your train ticket, the high speed and regional train system; a link to train schedules.


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