When visiting countries, of course, there are some etiquette that you need to follow to avoid trouble. This holds especially true when you plan a trip to Russia. Russian etiquette comes with its own set of rules and traditions that may seem unique to travelers. From the way you greet people to dining manners and how you present yourself in public, understanding these norms can make your visit smoother and more enjoyable.

Our travel blog will dive deep into these Russian etiquettes, ensuring you know exactly how to navigate your way with respect and ease.

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Greetings Etiquette in Russia

When you meet someone in Russia, it is polite to offer a handshake. Men shake hands with each other even if they meet for the first time or have known each other for years. Remember, if you are wearing gloves, it is respectful to remove them before shaking hands. Women may opt for a handshake in business settings, although a nod and a smile are more common in casual encounters.

Avoid shaking hands over the threshold of a door, as this is considered bad luck. When leaving, ensure you say goodbye and shake hands again; leaving without doing so is seen as impolite.

Dining Russian Style

Russian etiquette at the dining table is quite formal. Wait for everyone to be served before starting your meal. It is customary to say "Priyatnogo appetita" (Enjoy your meal) before eating. Leaving the table for the restroom is acceptable so, just excuse yourself. When you are done, leave a little food on your plate to show you are full. Remember, splitting the bill is common among friends, but if you are a guest, your host might insist on paying.

Related Article: Russia Releases A New Travel Etiquette Guide For Its Citizens

Drinking Traditions

In Russia, drinking alcohol comes with its own set of rules. Never drink without a toast; it is an essential part of Russian drinking etiquette. It is customary for men to pour drinks for women sitting nearby, especially during special occasions.

Placing an empty bottle on the table is considered bad luck, so it should be removed immediately. These practices are not just about drinking but sharing a moment with friends and family.

Visiting a Russian Home

If you are invited to a Russian home, do not go empty-handed. Bringing something sweet like cake or chocolates is a lovely gesture. Upon entering, take off your shoes; you might be offered slippers instead. Whistling inside is frowned upon as it is thought to bring financial misfortune.

Offering to help clean up after a meal is polite, but your host will likely decline. This gesture, however, leaves a good impression.

Russian Business Etiquette

Understanding Russian business etiquette is crucial for professional interactions. Meetings often start with a firm handshake. Keeping your hands out of your pockets is a sign of respect. Dressing conservatively and arriving on time for meetings is expected.

Business in Russia sometimes involves sharing a drink, which helps build trust among colleagues. Remember, formal titles and last names are preferred until you are invited to use first names.

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