Hey guys ! Lucas here.
One of the most interesting aspects of traveling or living abroad is culture, but it can change dramatically from one country to the other. For today, let’s take a look at some of the things we do differently in France and Japan.



When working in Japan, Keigo is probably one of the most difficult things to integrate : different words, levels of politeness and ways to behave. While very common in Japan, this only partially exists in France. For example, you talk to your boss or to customers using “vous” (plural form of “you”), because it’s more polite when you address someone you don’t know or that is your superior. Still, some companies nowadays allow to use “tu” (singular form of “you”), which is used to usually talk to family and friends, to talk to your boss, or even customers. You just have to ask if they don’t mind.
The language also doesn’t change too much, and we use the same verbs to make sentences. Respect is more shown through the tone you use when you speak.
Also, believe it or not, but you can argue with your boss and still have your job, so long as you argue respectfully. Constructive criticism is welcome in most companies.



In most restaurants in Japan, customers don’t have much contact with the waiters. If anything, they simply bring the menu and take orders. In France, waiters can also introduce themselves, because they will wait on you all night. Most the time, they also provide a description of the menu, wines and dishes of the day. It is very common in France to have waiters with a very good knowledge of wine and food.
Also, keep in mind that while tipping in Japan can be seen as an insult, in France it is more than recommended to tip if you had a great dinner and service. The better the service, the bigger the tip usually. Most the time, a good tip would be between 10 to 15 euros.



Historically, Japan has been a Buddhist country, and still is to this day. Lots of people still go to temples and pray, or practice ceremonies either in temples or at home. This is a very traditional aspect that Japanese people managed to keep in their culture, with lots of altars and small temples around.
Most churches in France are far from crowded, even on Sunday, when masses are held. Aside from small cities and villages, people don’t really go to church or pray anymore. One of the things people keep doing sometimes, though, is lighting up candles in churches to remember the dead.
As for ceremonies or religious holidays, bigger cities don’t really practice these anymore. You can witness some of these in smaller places, like Aix-En-Provence, in the South East of France.
Always remember that if you go visit a church, silence is appreciated. Most people don’t speak or whisper in churches, and take pictures discretely. Also, you can use holy water as you enter a church, provided in a sort of big basket at the entrance. Simply dip your fingers inside, then do the cross sign this way : up, down, right and left.