Some Gestures You Must Avoid That May Be Offensive In Other Countries


Not everywhere English works, and the one problem almost all travellers’ face is interacting with the locals as for some places which are too weird for speaking a particular language, signs and gestures work but, around the world some places are actually offended with the kind of gestures you make before approaching them. Again, not everywhere a Hi5 works as a sign of friendship, some places consider it a total oppression of act. Here’s a list of some of the probable offenses you MUST evade before going to places, some gestures you must avoid that may be offensive in other countries


The Thumbs Up Sign

The Thumbs up sign

The casual sign that is considered a victory sign is known as a sign of insult in Bangladesh, though the sign is still in a confused zone as some parts of the world for instance in US it is distinguished as a sign saying great job or well done, whereas in Russia and middle east it is recognized as ‘’up yours’’. It as a sign of victory for some and for some it is a really offensive gesture, so it’s better to be avoided elsewhere.


The OK Sign

ok sign

Some gestures you must avoid that may be offensive in other countries includes such a simple sign of Okay that is highly misinterpreted abroad, in US and in major parts of the world it is known as a sign of approval but beware, in some countries like Spain, Brazil and Greece, it is seen as an offensive sign portraying someone as an a**hole and also it is a discomforting sign for the gay community and in some places it is seen as an evil eye.


The Open Palm Wave

The Open Palm Wave

Some may use the open palm wave as a sign to stop someone from doing something incorrect or just for the sake of simple hello, but in Pakistan, Africa and Greece it is seen as a gesture that rubs someone’s face in ordure or muck. Widely it is now taken as a sign of harassment in many parts of the world due to domination of others, so the odds are you must avoid using it.


The ‘’V’’ or Victory Sign

Victory Sign

The hand sign made of 2 fingers with palm facing your inwards is a usual and most recognized gesture of saying victory, its common in many parts of the world but in UK and Australia it is still seen as pointing middle finger to someone in an uncommon manner.


Watch out to watch your wrist watch

watch your wrist watch

Looking at your wrist watch again and again is a common sign of depicting you being in hurry, which is highly common elsewhere in the world but in some parts of the world it is a serious offense sign to show disrespect to the person you are with, especially in Saudi Arabia, it is not liked as people think you are in a hurry and doesn’t have proper time for someone, for them, the time communication once started should end up whenever it had to be.


Using your left hand

Using your left hand

Using your left hand for any work is considered normal in the US and its neighbouring parts whereas some gestures you must avoid that may be offensive in other countries include Africa, Asia and the middle east where using your left hand for any purpose is considered a disrespectful thing as left hand is used in toilet and to do other clingy stuff, also shaking hand with the left one is not regarded a welcoming gesture in major parts of the world.

the last one on our list of some gestures you must avoid that may be offensive in other countries …


Hands below the table

It is none of anyone’s business I know to order where and how to put the hand while sitting on a table for dinner or lunch, but in America, it is drilled commonly to the children not to place their hands on table whereas in France it becomes questionable to put your hands below the table as it seems a discomforting attire of person sitting with hands down the table.


I am quirky, blunt and a happy writer, who lives in a crazy fascinating world of unrealistic realities and imaginations. My passion combines my enormous lust of writing and visualizing places I have been or have not been to, and writing them down on web, word pad or on just a piece of paper is the reason behind my peace of mind

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