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11/10/2011

Appointments in Sri Lanka

Do you feel differences between cultures when you travel or live in foreign countries?

One characteristic practice I noticed in Sri Lanka is "visiting without appointments".

In Japan, we usually appoint the date and time of our visit in advance, especially when on business. However, there is no such practice here in Sri Lanka. At first I was unaware of this and was hurriedly rechecking my datebook - "Was there an appointment today?" - whenever our staff told me that someone came over.

The other day, I had a chance to talk with a Japanese lady whose husband is Sri Lankan, and she told me of the practice. If you make an appointment for a visit, the host is likely to to prepare things like tea and sweets for the guest. The custom to arrive without previous notice comes from consideration so the person you are visiting would not have to take such trouble.

November 10, 2011 in Sri Lanka |