Etiquette

  • Loss of Face Singaporeans are sensitive to retaining face in all aspects of their lives. Being confrontational or angry with a local makes them lose face and you look rude.
  • Uncles & Aunties It is common to address middle-aged and elderly people as 'Uncle' or 'Auntie' as a sign of respect, even if they are not related or known to you.
  • Chopsticks Do not stick chopsticks upright in a bowl of rice. It is reminiscent of funeral rites and considered bad luck.
  • Hands Use your right hand to greet, wave, eat or interact with someone of Malay, Indonesian or Indian descent as the left hand is associated with restroom use.
  • Head & Feet The head is considered sacred by many so avoid touching someone else's. In contrast, the feet are considered dirty and directly pointing them at someone may cause offence.