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Japan’s Least Favorite Type of Foreigner

by Ewa Nowogorski

Answering the question of Japan’s favorite type of foreigner is easy, but answering the question, “What is Japan’s least favorite type of foreigner?” is a little bit more touchy.

Japanese people are remarkably progressive and accepting by Asian standards, contrary to their homogenous society. However, there are certain types of foreigners that stand out to them, and not in a positive light.

By what I have personally heard, it seems that Chinese tourists are some of the most scorned foreigners that Japanese people will come across. Due to both historical reasons and generalized personal experiences, Japanese people cannot help but silently (or openly) mutter their distaste when they come across a person from this category.

Chinese tourists tend to travel in large groups, and they have behaviors that Japanese people find extremely annoying. For example, these groups tend to walk spread out taking up entire sidewalks, not allowing for others to pass by them. Their purpose of visit also means that they frequently stop in the middle of the road to admire their surroundings, ironically unaware of the other people around them trying to pass by and go about their busy business. Chinese tourists also tend to speak loudly and display much emotion in their speech and gestures, which frightens and annoys locals. Finally, when they eat at restaurants their table manners are different from the Japanese. And while different does not mean bad, Japanese people who have never been exposed to mannerisms other than their own are often unable to accept the different customs of these Chinese tourists.

But one does not specifically have to be a Chinese tourist to be disliked. Simply behaving in any of the ways mentioned above will get you hated, so if you visit Japan be sure not to do any of those things.

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