Japan is a very well-mannered country and they respect their food culture very much. They have certain rules as to where you should eat and where you should not and if you do not follow these rules, you may stand out in either a good way or in a very very bad way! In this article we will list common food manners in public that Japanese people follow on a daily basis!
1. Eating while walking is only allowed in some places
To Japanese people, doing one thing at a time is an important manner to remember. And so, eating while walking is considered impolite. Moreover, Japan has many sacred places, such as temples and shrines. When there are no festivals being held, it is considered bad manners to eat or drink in such places. However, when food stalls are prepared for special celebrations, it becomes an exception. Nowadays, there are tourist spots like Asakusa where eating or drinking is allowed. It is still important to keep in mind that it is considered impolite to eat while walking in almost every places in Japan. If you still want to eat in public, stand in a corner and do not walk around.
2. You can eat in places where you can sit
When you go to parks or even train stations, there are places where you can sit like benches. While it is still not a good manner to have a meal in public, it is not as rude when you are sitting while doing so. It is also important to remember that theme parks, such as Tokyo Disneyland or Universal Studios Japan does not allow people to bring a food they bought outside the park. However, there are many places where you can buy and eat inside so you do not have to worry! Moreover, even though you are allowed to eat inside the Movie Theater, meals that are not bought from the movie theater counter are not allowed.
3. Do not eat in trains or buses!
This is definitely a big NO NO! Many people ride the trains and buses and most will find the smell of the food unpleasant. Moreover, you might accidentally spill your food which could cause an accident, especially in city trains.Drinking or eating candy or gum is just fine, but sandwiches, fast foods or meals with strong scent should be avoided. If you reserved a ride on a Shinkansen (a bullet train) , you are allowed to enjoy a meal.
4. Make sure to throw away your trash
An important manner to remember when eating in public in Japan is to avoid littering. When you finish eating, make sure to dispose your trash as soon as possible. This is a common rule to keep their surroundings clean. Many foreign tourists have been criticized for littering. There are several tourist spots where walking while eating are refrained due to this bad manner. Littering is bad for the environment and this can be avoided if we follow the Japanese way.
Japan is quite strict with their public rules, but it is no wonder why their environment is very clean. When visiting a foreign country, it is important to learn about their culture and follow their rules. If you understand the rules, your trip will surely be a hundred times better !!