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What not to do

Colchester, United...
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257 posts
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What not to do

Did anyone see the BBC this morning regarding things not to do in some countries. I have read on here about women covering their shoulders in the evenings,not sure why tho and there were many who didn't cover up and no-one appeared to bat an eyelid but this morning they were talking about showing the soles of your feet in Egypt is a no no, anyone heard of this one?

Essex. UK
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1. Re: What not to do

Yes, I believe it is bad manners - but no-one really seems to worry too much about these things in the resorts.

Also in the resorts many people do wear short shorts and strappy tops. The residents and staff don't seem to get offended - but like in many countires - you'll get a lot of attention if you are showing a lot of flesh - some will oggle big time and some will even trying to have a touch (yes even in El Gouna it has been known - I've experienced an over friendly bus driver - but that's one experience in 6 years and when I said no and stop in arabic in a firm voice he stopped straight away!)

I think it is a case of try and show some respect for other's beliefs and ways of life. Mind you, I wouldn't walk past an English building site in a bikini without expecting to feel uncomfortable!

Edinburgh, United...
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2. Re: What not to do

Soles of feet - never heard of this one. I know one of our Egyptian friends entered a bar with us with like flip flops on and they told him off.

Our girls attracted a lot of attention, even though they dressed pretty much down, but I think being blonde was a big attraction. One or two at Zeytona, walking by the shops on the way to the boat touched my eldest one the way by, but we knew that this could happen, and its quite harmless.

I have got to say I cringe when I see women sunbathing topless in this Muslim country, more when the are walking about, up to the toilets etc on the beach, that was moreso in Sharm.

Stanford-Le-Hope...
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3. Re: What not to do

Hi my mum saw this morning and mentioned about the no showing your soles of your feet in egypt, but she couldn't remember if they said this was a no no in Egypt, she then said if it is in Eygpt, how would you be able to sunbath or lay round pools without showing the soles of your feet?

Also i have been told buy a friend (a bit of a no it all) not being nasty, but she hasn't been to Egypt, though saying that i haven't been their yet, i am due to go in october, that you shouldn't give Egyptains the thumbs up sign. She may be right, she has told me things before and has been so wrong, but she maybe right this time. ;-)

Intreasting topic Kai.

Julie.

Essex. UK
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4. Re: What not to do

Afer some internet research this is what I've found:

In most Arab countries, showing the feet, especially the soles, is considered demeaning for men, (because women of low status go usually barefoot).

Thumbs up, meaning "everything is great" or "I’m Okay" to the West can be equated to the "middle finger" by Middle Easterners. However, most Arab countries are so used to watching western films and television that they are well aware of what the sign means to westerners and will not be offended – and will use the sign themselves without meaning offence.

London
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5. Re: What not to do

i'm confused now as I knew showing the soles of your feet was consider offensive in Turkey, but didn't realise it was in Egypt. Strange.

Nuweiba, Egypt
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6. Re: What not to do

The showing of the soles of your feet does not really apply to sunbathing unless you plonk yourself down in front of others and then stretch out with your bottoms of your feet facing up at those other people.

It usually applies to situations where one is gathered around on chairs or on the floor. One takes care that the bottoms of our feet are not facing towards others, regardless of whether we are wearing shoes, socks or are barefooted.

It is just one of many common practices of etiquette that people observe here. Like never resting our feet on a table, ( especially if that table is being used or will be used to put food or drinks or the koran or bible on it ). Or one should not cross one's legs when sitting on a chair ( important to know if one is invited to an Egyptian family house or attending a meeting with business persons or government officials.

There are many good manners to be followed here as there are in Europe, which we all learned when we were young. Unfortunately, I am sorry to say, whether here or in Europe, so many are being forgotten and / or not taught to our youngsters.

Stanford-Le-Hope...
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7. Re: What not to do

Thanks EssexGounie, i can let my mum know today that the topic of showing soles on your feet was dicussed, she will find it intreasting.

I did say if it was true (sole of feet) that hotels and Sharm i imagine, are used to people showing their sole of there feet round the pool and beach, i would imagine though they would find it rude if you put your feet up on seats on public transport and resturants, ie when seatting outside and putting your feet up on seats, but maybe Egyptains do these things themselves with their feet ?, i have no idea because as yet i have not been out their to see for myself.

Thanks for finding out this information, especially the thumbs up bit, blimey for once my friend actually knows something that is true, i will email her later, though she can be a no it all, i love her to bits, LOL.

I hope it didn't take you long to web search the Not What To Do questions.

Thanks again.

Julie :-)

Stanford-Le-Hope...
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8. Re: What not to do

Just seen swisssinai, reply.

I must say it really does annoy me when people put there feet or shoes up on chairs, public transport seats, and i must say the thing that annoys me the most is when people pick their teeth or nose (wipping it in a tissue) after they have finished their meal.

I remember when i was working in a resturant we had some French people come in for a meal, and guess what? yes they picked there noses, and put the contents of their noses in the servettes, i didn't know where to look, and i had to clean the table afterwards, YUCK!

Each to their own i suppose.

Julie

London
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9. Re: What not to do

Brilliant informative post swiss. It's great to hear the background and rational behind the traditions. Also when it's explained properly it all makes such good sense. Thank-you.

Colchester, United...
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10. Re: What not to do

Good info, didn't know about crossing legs-I will try to remember that one. We are going in May so, hopefully, will be quite warm in the evenings, just how covered have my shoulders got to be, as I don't want to offend or cook.

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