People worldwide are fascinated by Japanese culture, cuisine, dramas, and short series. And some of us have already begun planning our upcoming trip to Japan. 

Japan’s high society and devotion to strict etiquette laws are why it is so well-liked by everyone. Consequently, someone traveling to Japan could be concerned about how to act while visiting.

We’ve compiled the top 10 Japanese etiquette rules in this article to keep you from getting into awkward situations while in Japan. Therefore, read on to prepare yourself.

Remove your shoes 

In Japan, it’s customary to pull your shoes before entering. And a few days after your visit, you’ll start to understand it. This law primarily applies to hotels, residences, restaurants, temples, museums, and elsewhere.

Moreover, it would help if you didn’t worry about having your shoes stolen because the establishment has shoe racks, shoe lockers, and occasionally even plastic bags to put your shoes in. Once you know this rule, imitate what others are doing while you are in a particular location. 

Do not be concerned about going barefoot because, once you get to a particular location, such as a museum, you will be given a slipper to wear after removing your shoes. You will also be offered a new slipper in the bathroom, which occurs everywhere, so you use the restroom in a different pair. 

The Chopstick Rule

Regarding table manners, the chopstick rule is also crucial, and you should respect it. You can set your chopstick down in one of two ways. The two options are to lay them flat across your dish or to lean them against the chopstick rest. Sticking your chopstick straight up in the rice dish is one thing you should never do. Additionally, you should never transfer food from one chopstick to another.

Additionally, it would help if you stayed away from rubbing your chopsticks together because doing so is offensive to Japanese culture.

One chopstick is also not allowed to be used. And when speaking to someone at the table, avoid pointing your chopstick in their direction. The final rule is not to be embarrassed or scared if you don’t know how to use a chopstick. Ask for a spoon and a fork instead of mishandling a chopstick and embarrassing yourself.


In Japan, bowing is relatively well-known. People in Japan enjoy bending. Therefore, you shouldn’t worry about it either. A simple bow or nod here, and there can convey your gratitude or an apology to someone. 

There are various bow types, and each style has its unique etiquette. It all depends on the bow you’re using on the other person. It is more of a formal bow if the lump is longer than usual. Short projections are more casual, 

and some bubbles call for bows in return. However, if you are traveling presently and are unsure about the bowing regulation, you don’t need to be concerned because the Japanese have started learning to shake hands with foreign visitors. 

Filling The Glass Rule

Did you know that the Japanese have a law on drinking alcohol? Do not, for instance, fill your glass because doing so shows that you are ungrateful and selfish. It would help if you waited for someone else to load your glass or filled someone else’s instead. 

Try to lift your glass when it is being filled to be more respectful because it is a very formal gesture. However, if you’re hesitant and unsure what to do, wait to observe what the other people at the table are doing, then copy them. 

Do Not Tip

The custom of tipping is practiced outside of Japan. Additionally, if you leave a tip at the table, the server will typically approach you to get the information back. Instead of recommendations, many restaurants and retail establishments have jars on their cash registers where you can leave any money to express appreciation. 

Therefore, if a tip jar is offered, you can always place the money in it instead of tipping. Along with your main bill, restaurants and other businesses always charge a secondary fee that the establishment determines. 

But even after all that, if you still want to pay a tip of thanks to the AirBnB host, someone who helped you, or a server, you should place the money in an envelope before presenting it to them because handing them cash directly can be rude.


Itadakimasu is a phrase used in Japanese at mealtimes. Itadakimasu has numerous meanings, among them “bon appetit,” “enjoy the meal,” and even “let’s eat.” Japanese folks frequently use this expression to express their gratitude for the meals they have received. 

It’s almost like thanking God in their language for this lunch. According to popular belief, one should join hands, say “Itadakimasu,” bow slightly, and then begin eating afterward. It’s not difficult, and with some practice, you’ll become accustomed to saying it without thinking before meals. 

Time Management 

In Japan, it’s disrespectful to be late. Therefore, if you agree to meet someone at a specific location and time, you should arrive precisely at that time. This rule is crucial, especially around mealtimes when Japanese people take much care and effort in preparing their food. 

Therefore, if they cook when you’re not there, it’s incredibly disrespectful to them. Don’t panic; it’s okay to be late due to a different appointment or traffic occasionally. 

Giving Up Seat

“Letting go of your seat is another rule. If you were on public transportation and noticed a pregnant woman standing up, be sure to give her your heart. To be respectful, see whether somebody needs the seat more than you do. Therefore, offering your seat to someone else is a considerate act, and in exchange, people typically say Sumimasen. 

Do not eat or walk in Public. 

Other disrespectful behaviors include eating and strolling in Public. Additionally, the majority of consumers carry their takeaway and eat it later. You’ll also witness folks finishing their drinks while standing before the food machine. Japanese citizens also strongly adhere to the ban on eating and drinking while riding public transportation. Therefore, if you’re hungry, find a location to sit or stand and finish your food immediately. 

Practice a little Japanese.

First of all, it seems strange to expect Japanese people to know English since you are the one who is visiting Japan. Since most Japanese don’t speak English and don’t even care to acquire it, it’s courteous on your part to learn the most basic phrases so you can get by during the day.

They will immediately recognize you as a foreigner, so they won’t anticipate you to be fluid if you’re worried about that. They will also value every little Japanese phrase you use to speak with them. Therefore, at least study a few words on YouTube before traveling to Japan or get a language app. There are many apps available for learning different languages. 

Last Word 

We’ve reached the end of this article and have done our best to cover all the essential information you should know if you’re visiting Japan or, at the very least, want to learn more about it. So, we were able to answer your questions. To read more interesting articles, visit our page if you enjoyed reading this one. 

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