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Culture Clash - How not to be rude?

Massachusetts
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Culture Clash - How not to be rude?

The "entschuldigen" thread contained some comments about what is considered rude or not in Germany. I'm generally an easygoing person, so I'm not worried about being super-irritated by anyone else's rudeness, but I would like advice on how to be as courteous as possible to the people whose lovely city I will be visiting. :)

Any advice for a dumb American tourist who would like to come across as less dumb than the usual dumb American tourist? :)

(We arrive in Berlin on Wednesday! So excited!)

Europe
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1. Re: Culture Clash - How not to be rude?

Also in Berlin a lot of people will understand German, so "sorry" and "excuse me", "thank you" and "please" will do fine.

North Attleboro...
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2. Re: Culture Clash - How not to be rude?

What you'll find is that most Germans, especially the older generation, all speak English. Berlin has changed tremendously since the wall has come down so you're ability to travel throughout will be so much greater than before. Back to rude - I guess I'd have to say that Berliners are no different from those in NYC - big city life is all about hustle & bustle so don't take anything that might be said or done too serious. Berliners, actually, Germans in general tend to be much more about proper manners. If you feel you've offended then a simply "verzeiung: (fertsiung - long "i") will due. Entschuldigung (pronounces pretty much as written) will also suffice. If all ense fails, a simple "I'm sorry" will also do because they'll ge the idea. They do tend to be more about "proper" and "improper" when addressing someone, but again, i wouldn't worry too much about that. As long as people see that you're courteous then you won't have any problems. Most of all, do your homework and enjoy this city. Great food, even better beer and fantastic nightlife. Lots & lots to see & do. You MUST visit the Berlin Zoo. It's huge and see if you can't have your picture taken with lion cubs, it's an amazing experience.

New Jersey
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3. Re: Culture Clash - How not to be rude?

ww1614

"Any advice for a dumb American tourist who would like to come across as less dumb than the usual dumb American tourist?"

Yes, don't generalize about American tourists, some of us are not dumb and can actually speak German.

Enjoy your trip! Berlin ist wunderbar.

Europe
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4. Re: Culture Clash - How not to be rude?

Gbow, good reply.

San Jose, California
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for California
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5. Re: Culture Clash - How not to be rude?

Yep, regular politness goes a long way.

6. Re: Culture Clash - How not to be rude?

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