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  • Are Japanese People Really that Polite?

    A friend of mine went to Japan recently and said the Japanese are extremely polite, is this because they think you are a rich westerner?

  • #2
    Generally, Japanese people are polite for everyone, not because of you are rich or you are westerner etc.
    If you visit Japan, You will know about it.

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    • #3
      Politeness is everywhere you go in Japan, its something you take for granted when you have been there a while ... but when you return to your home country you get your own culture shock by the rudeness of some people!

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      • #4
        Not at all! Japanese people are equally polite to everyone. I am an Indian, and this is one of the first countries where I have got equal politeness from every native person I met. Whether its a train staff, a convenient store guy or even my language teacher bows when I meet them! Also, the most used words here are Thank you, please and sorry! (I have never seen such an extreme use of these words every. I have always used them just as a filler! )

        Back in my country, the government officials treat common public like beggers. They think that they are the kings and can do whatever they feel like. While here in Japan, the government staff serves public just like how it should be, like helpers! Their salary comes from public taxes, and they behave appropriately. When I first wend to municipal ward office for my residence registration after entering Japan, I was overwhelmed by their response! The staff didn't know English, and they literally felt sorry about it! They tried to help me with the whole procedure with utmost respect and bowed 5 to 6 times when I left. I took 1.5 hours of that poor lady and she was helping with the warmest smile ever.

        What else can you expect!

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        • #5
          Well the Japanese are well known to be polite, especially to strangers. However, I have a feeling that some of them are afraid to interact with gaijins (foreigners) because they wouldn't be able to communicate properly. I'm not saying that this goes for everyone, but some Japanese go out of their way to avoid a conversation if they can help it. Of course, this is not a case for everyone. for the most part, it would be best to know a bit of "basic Japanese" in order to ask them for directions when you get lost so that they wouldn't panic in trying to use sign, body language and the little English that they know.

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          • #6
            I agree with everyone, Japanese people are one of the most well manner human beings I know. Usually, if you encounter someone there that wasn't polite, they are just being shy because they don't know how to communicate well in a different language or they are just having a really bad time. The only situation that I can imagine Japanese abandoning their politeness is when somebody is being rude to them or someone else or if you are tardy (because they respect their time so much). One of the things Japanese teach their children is manners and patriotism, they start late with educating them with our usual subject like Science, English and Math. For them, manners comes first. This is also their foundation for good working ethic.

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