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Author Topic: Etiquette advice  (Read 862 times)


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Etiquette advice
« on: March 23, 2016, 01:37:13 PM »
Wow!  agagagagag

It's been awhile since I been here! I'm very settled here at my university now : ) amazing how different things are now, the differences in culture are worlds apart! Love it here and I don't miss Korea, even a tiny bit!  bhbhbhbhbh

Small issue really but I wondered whether small gifts were due in these cases....

It's taken me awhile as generally such issues haven't arisen much here, in Korea, I have a budget allowance for such things!

I locked myself out of my campus apartment (put the key on the table to pick up something I needed to deliver, pressed the lock inwards and shut the door, the key still on the table!) I wechat-ed our foreign laison staff and they replied that the boss lady would give me the key if I went to office now. The boss lady who looked like she was camped out there for the weekend, gave me the spare key and asked that I return it in 24 hours, Sunday which I did, no issues.

Now in this sort of scenario, is it a good thing to give a small gift, to who, and what?

When I've gave gifts on arriving, the recipients seemed surprised, even shocked .... I don't want to get it wrong. The above was over a week ago now too....



  • Barfly
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Re: Etiquette advice
« Reply #1 on: March 23, 2016, 11:24:33 PM »
You sound like a really well mannered human being, kudos to you  bfbfbfbfbf

With the gift giving, I don't give gifts for these every day things that are part of the job duties of the FAO and admin staff. But always bring back some treats whenever I visit a different province or city. They love getting a little package of sweets, or dried food, some special fruit from other places in China, honey or lanolin if I go to Australia, I always give a carton of duty free ciggies to the college driver, as he is usually supposed to be on holidays but still always appears at the airport to bring me home if I travel by plane.

So, basically I save giving gifts for some special circumstance, then they are happy to receive them and aren't embarrassed by it.


  • Barfly
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Re: Etiquette advice
« Reply #2 on: March 24, 2016, 06:52:12 AM »
Welcome to the big smoky!

Glad to hear you are settling in well.

The culture here is far less formal and ritualized than Korea. Additionally, unless you are here for a bit building up a network [guanxi] won't be really possible as the locals, rightly, view us as temps. However, it's always a good idea to spread positive impressions as people will talk about you to others. A small gift to the office worker who gave you the key would be appreciated, but I feel for the FAO a) they didn't really do anything and b) it's their job.
The greatest and most important problems of life are all in a certain sense insoluble. They can never be solved, but only outgrown.
- Jung

Escaped Lunatic

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Re: Etiquette advice
« Reply #3 on: March 24, 2016, 08:05:13 AM »
Alternatively, realize you owe the person who gave you the key a favor.  It probably won't be anything major, most likely something small like "can you help me carry this box up or down the stairs".  You'll be fine - unless someone in that person's family needs an organ transplant. ahahahahah
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English Gent

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Re: Etiquette advice
« Reply #4 on: March 24, 2016, 09:23:36 AM »
Wow, a gift for that? Nah, dont try to overdo it or they will realise you are bit of a doormat.
As others have said, you simply need to be your usual nice self, change the water bottle or something if they are struggling.

Authur Radley

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Re: Etiquette advice
« Reply #5 on: March 24, 2016, 01:22:48 PM »
I have found a small basket (or bag) of fresh fruit is welcome and appropriate. You can find them in the small stores near hospitals.


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Re: Etiquette advice
« Reply #6 on: March 25, 2016, 10:05:53 AM »

This is great.

I feel for the FAO too; she is "on call" for any issue that we have and with many teachers they are many and varied lol, so she must get quite tired of us.

The lady who was in the office is actually our boss  ahahahahah she seems nice enough, and I'm very grateful that I didn't have to deal with the issues that I had in Korea when a similar situation occured (the door battery ran out.... but I thought that I had mis-remembered the code... obviously it was my fault regardless of the truth of the situation awawawawaw)

If a student helps you out in some way, do you get them something small to say thank you?

A student downloaded a movie for me (I already had it, but hadn't watched it yet, and he offered and I didn't want to be rude), when I handed the USB back to him I offered him so ferraro roche chocolates (which I thought were hugely popular) but he refused, just saying "No" , I'm really not good with names / faces so I was unsure which student I was returning the USB too  bibibibibi

I'll remember them when I go away somewhere else in future. I went to Thailand during the winter holidays but never thought to bring something back!