Those who are soon going to Austria, remember that you have to equip yourself with at least a couple of facts about the norms and culture in the country. Being an expat in a stranger country is challenging. If you are going to Austria alone, it’s better to have knowledge about what to expect, how to behave, and how you can converse with the locals without appearing rude to them.
Also Read: Philippine Embassy in Vienna, Austria
In this blog, we made a list of dos and don’ts that you can definitely use while you are in Austria. You may share this with your relatives abroad.
How to Behave in Austria
If you are wondering how you can behave in Austria, you need to master the basics first before you study the complicated laws and regulations. Behaving in Austria is easy if you know exactly what the locals do when they are outside their homes and when they are talking to other people, especially expats. Know the basic dos and don’ts. After that, observe the environment and don’t forget to apply the laws you have learned from the government and locals. You can adjust to the new surrounding by observing and adapting to what the locals do.
Do’s in Austria
You have to start with knowing the dos and don’ts because they are basically what tourists and overseas workers adapt when they go to other countries. They are easier to remember as well compared to written laws. So, here are the dos in Austria:
- Do talk about religious diversity. It’s a good topic in Austria and for sure, locals will appreciate your participation in this kind of topic. Austrians actually appreciate talking about their home religion.
- Do show an interest in the beauty of Austria. It’s actually a good impression for the locals if you not just interested in the background of their religion but in the sight, you are seeing as well.
- Do respect a local’s personal space. Physical and personal privacy is very important in Austria. Together with the locals, try to practice this one, especially when someone asks for space.
- Do ask for permission when taking a photograph of people. This is a form of respect for their privacy.
- Do knock on the doors when you enter a room or a house. This is another form of respect for the local’s privacy.
- Do be open in body language once you have a close relationship with the locals. It’s acceptable in Austria.
- To engage in enriching conversation with the locals. Austrians are interested in conversations where they can acquire knowledge and learning. When engaging in a conversation, show your interest in the topic discussed by your counterpart.
- Do speak sensitively, especially when the topic is about WWII, the holocaust, and related events. Austrians tend to be emotional when WWII is being talked about. You should speak cautiously if you want to talk about these things.
- Do classify Austrians from Germans. Although they are both from Europe, they are different and locals would appreciate it If you classify them as Austrians rather than Germans.
Don’ts in Austria
Don’ts, on the other hand, are the things you should avoid when you are in Austria. If dos are the acceptable behaviors, don’ts reflect the things that Austrians don’t do in the country. Follow the things in this list so you won’t appear rude or avoid offending locals when you are in their country. Here are the following don’ts in Austria.
- Don’t arrive late or cancel your appointment at the last minute. It’s considered rude in Austria if you are not punctual, especially in business meetings. As much as you can, be on time. Whether it’s a business meeting or a lunch out with your colleagues, make a good impression by arriving on time.
- Don’t assume that Germans and Austrians are the same. They are from different countries with different cultures and traditions. You should learn how to distinguish them so as not to offend Austrians.
- Don’t sugarcoat what you have to say to a local. They prefer it to be straightforward rather than sugarcoating out of modesty or shyness. Be frank. Say what you really mean and use the right words to avoid confusing Austrians.
- Don’t make assumptions or insult Austrians by criticizing the “Sound of Music” movie and musical. This is a viral topic in Austria.
- Don’t misunderstand the hospitality of Austrians to refugees. Locals are very understanding to migrants and the country usually helps refugees to seek asylum in the country.
- Don’t speak boldly about the world war and holocausts. They are sensitive topics and if you want to talk about them, make sure your Austrian counterpart initiates the conversation.
- Don’t insult the country’s culture, tradition, and norms. If you want to compare them to your home country, do it privately but don’t speak boldly about it especially when you are conversing with a local. This can offend them in some ways.
Tips when going to Austria
Of course, you need to prepare everything when you go to Austria. You need to complete your legal requirements from your passport down to your visas and identification cards. Aside from your documents, you need to prepare yourself for the changes. There will be a lot of differences, especially if you are coming from Asian countries. Europe is a whole new different continent. It’s better if you have information about the country where you are going.
The dos and don’ts we have in this blog will definitely help you become more aware of your future as an expat in Austria. You will learn beforehand what are the possible ways to come to good terms with the locals. You will know what will please them in simple ways. You will learn what are the sensitive topics in the country. Basically, the dos and don’ts teach you the essential things you need to remember when socializing with other people in Austria. As an expat, you need strategies so you can make friends with the locals. It’s not just about your work or your travel trip. It’s also about making sure that you appear respectful in the presence of the locals.