Different Manners in Cameroon

June 19th, 2016 by | Tags: | No Comments »

In Cameroon, they have their own unique set of manners.  While one manner may appear polite in the US, it can be impolite in Cameroon and vice versa.  Also, certain body movements can mean differently in Cameroon, and Cameroonians may say certain phrases differently. I would like to share examples of how certain manners in Cameroon are different from the US.

Do not cross your legs in Cameroon or you’ll be seen as a prostitute if you’re a female or ultra mancho if you’re a male.  In the US, crossing legs is acceptable and is sometimes a formal way of sitting down.

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Eat fish, couscous and other various food with hands.  Cameroonians are actually very good about making sure they wash their hands prior to eating.  In the US, while there are certain foods that we do eat with our hands such as pizzas and sandwiches, there are certain dishes such as fish that we only eat with forks and knives.

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When inviting people out for a meal, you must pay for everyone who you invite.  In the US, we pay for our own meals or split the bill.

Shake hands when greeting, even when already knowing the person and in informal settings.  In the US, we normally only shake hands when we meet new people or in formal settings such as when seeing a person for an important meeting.

When waving by folding hands down in Cameroon, it means come here.  In the US, it means bye bye.

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When you say you are sorry, you say “Ashia!” even if you’re an English speaker.  In the US, the word “Ashia” does not exist and we just simply say, “I’m sorry.”

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