• The thumbs up

People have been using this sign since Ancient Roman times where it was used to determine whether the defeated gladiator should be spared or executed. Many of us, today, still use it and know this to be a sign of positivity, agreement and good luck.

However, in the Middle East for example, showing this sign to a person is highly offensive. It suggests that you are going to stick something up … well, you get the picture.

  • The “V” (peace) sign

There are two ways you can show the “V” sign, and that is with your palm facing either outward or inward. Which is the bad one, can you guess? Showing the outward “V” is fine as it is a sign of peace. People often use the sign in photographs.

If you are photographed showing “V” with your palm facing inward, you will get no peace from people in the UK, Ireland or New Zealand. This is tantamount to showing your middle finger to someone.

  • The horns

This is when you curl your thumb over your ring and middle finger to form horns, typically shown at metal or rock concerts. Many countries have different interpretations of this sign. In Italy, for instance, it is used to signal that your partner is cheating on you while in some parts of Africa it is considered a curse. Even amongst your own folk, it is safest to avoid using this gesture.

  • Curling your index finger to call someone

Certainly some of us have once used this gesture to signal someone to come to us. It seems harmless, doesn’t it? In the Philippines, they do it to call dogs so you can imagine that doing this to a person is highly offensive. We would go as far as to say that showing this sign might get you arrested.

  • Crossing your index and middle finger

Let’s take an example, if you know a woman in Vietnam who is about to write a test or undergo an operation, do not cross your fingers as a symbol of good luck. To her, it doesn’t mean good luck at all but rather something very offensive. It actually represents a female’s genitalia and is extremely derogatory.

  • Touching your index finger with your thumb

We may understand this gesture to mean that all is A-okay. It is not when you show it in Brazil or Germany. The locals find it disgusting while the people in France connect it with uselessness. It is alright to show it in Japan as this symbolizes money.

Some gestures you just shouldn’t make anywhere in the world

  • The middle finger is just a finger, but a terrible one at that
  • Punching your fist into the crook of your elbow and jerking your arm upwards is the silent why of swearing at someone
  • Sticking your thumb through your index and middle finger when making a fist is another way to depict women’s private parts

Do not let any of these gestures ruin your vacation. Trust Sandown Tours and Incentives to assist you in all your travel needs.

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