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Travel Guide: 5 ways to culturally prepare yourself for your destination

Understand the cultural and social norms of a place you’re visiting is important to the success of your trip.

If you are armed with adequate cultural knowledge of the place, it will help you behave in accordance with the customs of the locals, thus ensuring a smooth and tension free visit.

1. Try to learn the language:

While you may not be able to completely learn a language in the few weeks or months it takes to plan your trip, learning the basics is important.

Learning the basics like ‘hello’, ‘please’, ‘thank you’, ‘excuse me’ etc. will help you communicate fairly long enough.

You may also install a language translation app on your phone to make it easier.

2. Learn about the religion:

The last thing you want to do is unknowingly disrespect the local religion of your destination with your words or actions.

It is important to read about the religious practices, beliefs and values of a place you plan to visit beforehand.

Doing so will help you show the locals respect by dressing accordingly and not disrupt their religious rituals.

3. Be open minded:

If you have bias against the people or place you are visiting, you are not likely to maximise your travel experience.

It is important to keep an open mind so that you can learn new things and savour your experiences. You should be willing to recognise, understand and embrace any cultural differences you encounter.

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