You have surely have had guests at home and you know what you liked and what you didn’t like about them. But there might be times where you get lost, this is why we leave you 9 recommendations that will help you when travelling to a foreign host family home that you don’t know.
Here are a few tips we suggest you when being a guest to make a good impression:
- SMILE: is the key to success. If you don’t understand the language very well, do not isolate, try to follow the conversation and smile. It is a universal language.
- THANKS: First of all, you have to stablish contact with the family, introduce yourself and thank them for having you. They are going to include your in their home routines and in their lives so you must let them know how thankful you are.
- GREETINGS: Not every country greets or has the same proximity or trust. In the Anglo-Saxon countries they shake hands, while in the Mediterranean countries they give two kisses. The best thing to do if you don’t know the rules is to offer your hand.
- GIFT: A small detail or a souvenir from your country or your hometown or some chocolates, a book… Could be a good start. Giving a present to someone is a very elegant way of thanking for the invitation. The gift must never be a sign of superiority or ostentation.
- BE POLITE: Education and courtesy is the key to everything. It is important to be sincere and to ask the questions we want in a very clear way, remaining polite and trying not to hurt or make thing uncomfortable. Remember: please and thank you, is the number one rule.
- ADAPT TO THE CIRCUMSTANCES: The situation changes depending on the country, the culture and the family. You will probably find yourself in a new environment surrounded by new people, new food, a new language… Accept it, take it in and make it yours too.
- HOME INTEGRATION: As a new member of the family you must respect their home culture and adapt to it; their routines, their eating and sleeping hours, tidiness, noises… Act as they do to make the situation comfortable for both of you, so that you are not a stranger anymore.
- DO NOT ISOLATE: If a family is willing to host you it means they are interested in you. They want to know you and make you part of them while your stay. So avoid staying alone in your room alone, isolating with your headphones, and try sharing more time with them.
- GOODBYE: When it comes to the end you should thank them again for having you and tell them it’s being so nice to meet them. It is important for you and for them to cause a good image because it may lead to other possible exchanges, as you will get a good review, or you might want to go back in the future. So keep all doors open.
We found an interesting article from The Guardian “The 11 step guide to being a good guest” about guest behavior when invited to lunch/dinner, that might complement our information.
Overall, we could say that the key to be the best guest anyone would like to have are RESPECT, EMPATHY and GOOD MANNERS. But remember always to be yourself, no matter the circumstances, you must remain sincere, people will appreciate it very much and will take you as a trustful person.
Take a look at this video from the blogger Amy Anoibi in which explains how to be a good guest. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fXdNJrqou4I