In England we have a popular term; “Do’s and Dont’s”. This basically means a list of things one should or should not do in a given situation. Here is a fun list of things to consider when in England or dealing with English people!

Do pay as you consume – Pay for drinks as you order them at bars and pubs! This is not necessary in restaurants, but is vital in anywhere more informal such as a pub or club bar.

Do say ‘Excuse me’ – If someone gets in your way or you accidentally bump into someone this little phrase will instantly diffuse any worry and will usually get you a smile! It’s also a good way to make someone get out of your way.

Do wait in line – A very particular thing in England is forming queues (a line of people waiting for something). For example, you want to buy something in a shop, but there are four other people who want to buy something too.

The first person there stands next in line for the till to pay, and everyone else waits patiently behind them. When it is your turn, you get to pay, but after the other people who were there before you. If you go before someone who was waiting for longer than you, then you risk annoying some English people!Do say ‘Please’ and ‘Thank you’ – It is considered good manners (polite) to say these words frequently. We say ‘thank you’ alot in England, whenever someone does something for you, even something very small. It is hard to say it too much, but if you say it too little people will notice and might get offended!Do put your hand over your mouth – If you yawn or cough, always put your hand over your mouth so that nobody can see your tongue and teeth. English people consider people who yawn without covering their mouth to be very rude!

Do say ‘Sorry!’ – This is perhaps the most important word in the English language! If you do something that might offend or inconvenience another, say ‘sorry’.

English people say sorry even when they haven’t done anything wrong – for example if you bump into someone, you should say ‘sorry!’ to apologise, but they will often say ‘sorry!’ to you too, even though it was your fault. This is a very English custom.

Do smile! – If you smile, people will smile at you too. Usually.

Do shake hands – when you meet someone for the first time, shake their right hand with your right hand. Not your left! Some people believe that if you shake with your left hand, you are saying ‘Hello, I am homosexual!’ and for many people it is just odd. Right hand only even if you are gay!

Do drive on the left hand side of the road!

Are you getting worried about making mistakes yet? Don’t worry! With practice all these things become normal.


3 Responses to “English Do’s and Dont’s”

  1. English Do’s and Dont’s Part 2 at English-Blogs.com on August 22, 2006 7:38 pm

    [...] Here continues our blog on English Do’s and Dont’s – those things you should and should not do when in England or with English people! You can read from the beginning here. [...]

  2. siena on October 18, 2006 3:02 am

    Thank you for sharing with us this very useful info. May I share this with my students, too? My topic is about do’s and don’ts in England next week. I hope you don’t mind.

    Thanks soo much. Cheers!

  3. Jon on October 18, 2006 7:45 pm

    Yes, please do share with your students. Thank you very much for asking. :)

Trackback URI | Comments RSS

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.