When to Greet in Norway | Special "New to Oslo"

“Politeness in Norway is much more about not disturbing others rather than following strict social rules.”

Julien S. Bourrelle

I lived two years in Spain

When you enter a shop you say “¡Hola!”

The cashier replies “¡Hola!”

And all the other people in the shop reply “¡Hola!”

It looks like this

You feel very much welcomed



I was in Spain last summer

When I got back to Norway

I went to Rema 1000 and said "hei!hei!"


In Norway greetings mean something else

You greet when you have something to talk about

When you have something purposeful to say

If you have a reason  

Greetings are more practical

You may not go around the office every morning

Shaking hands and kissing each of your colleagues



When you leave a conference or a party

You may not say goodbye to someone you spent an hour talking with

Norwegians are not rude

They simply have codes that differs from other cultures

It is often about not disturbing others

And respecting each other’s privacy



Source: "The Social Guidebook to Norway"

You may find it entertaining

By Julien S. Bourrelle

Watch him on TED

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