Greeting Norwegians

Source: "The Social Guidebook to Norway"

In many places around the world

You try to establish eye contact with others when you enter a place

A coffee shop, a restaurant, a meeting, a conference

You acknowledge people 

You nod, you smile and you may even say "hi"

To people you do not know

People you probably won't see again

You do this for many reasons

To indicated that you "see them"

That you are welcoming and nice

To create a nice atmosphere where further contact is easy to initiate


In Norway it works differently

*"Why is he talking to me?"

Norwegians need a reason to speak to others

Politeness in Norway is a lot about not disturbing others

If you greet for no apparent reason

Norwegians will try to figure out how they know you

what you want to sell them

why you are talking to them

Norwegians are not cold, rude or uneducated

They are shy, polite and do not want to disturb

Norwegians are special

It is easy to misinterpret their behaviours


Read more about our amazing Norwegian friends in Our Social Guidebooks to Norway 




By Julien S. Bourrelle

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