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Old 10-12-2012, 05:37 AM
Location: The western periphery of Terra Australis
24,683 posts, read 45,352,353 times
Reputation: 11862


When I was in Vietnam last year, I was lining up to use an ATM, the only one in the town that was still working. There were about 4 of us, all foreign tourists, behind a couple of Vietnamese people. Anyway, as soon as the Vietnamese people would finish, more Vietnamese people who weren't in the line who were just milling around waiting behind us would barge in. I think at least 3 or 4 did so before the first non-Vietnamese could use the ATM. I even tried to stop them and told them that the people in front were waiting, but they just went in quick. They others, to my annoyance, weren't doing anything but just complained.

Do some Asian countries have no concept of queuing or lining up? Or is it acceptable to just push in, anyone who can get in first gets first dibs? Or were they being rude even by their standards?

Old 10-12-2012, 11:45 AM
Location: North Hollywood
331 posts, read 617,014 times
Reputation: 220
Queuing is not part of most Asian cultures. I'm from UK which is infamous for queuing! I remember going to a bank in India and when I had got to the front desk an old lady tried to get seen before me. I asked her to wait and told her I got there first. She looked a bit shocked but she backed down.

I never had problems in China, Thailand or Hong Kong. I think the fact that I'm a couple of inches taller than most of the locals scared them off!
Old 10-12-2012, 11:46 AM
Location: San Francisco, California
1,953 posts, read 5,202,766 times
Reputation: 2294
thats very common behavior, thats how it is in big crowded cities in asia, bumping into somebody is not a big deal when you live in a crowded highly populated area

the same thing happens in the US in chinatown, it's common to be pushed by an old Chinese man or woman while getting on a bus, crossing the street, etc

for westerners it seems rude but in asia it's very common
Old 10-12-2012, 12:19 PM
Location: Bike to Surf!
3,080 posts, read 9,938,486 times
Reputation: 2978
Yep. Normal. You're probably bigger. Use your size to your advantage.

When we were travelling, we would both go to the bus/train/whatever ticket window, I would block while my spouse would negotiate with the ticket seller. Elbows up. If you're wearing a backpack, use it to push people aside. Having a blocker really helps. Otherwise, you might be trying to speak with the person behind the window and an impatient local will just shove their way in front and interrupt you to do their business.

We generally tried not to cut off people off who had been "waiting" (pushing their way to the front) longer, but we didn't let people in in front of us and we weren't shy about shoving people out of our way when we judged it was our turn.
Old 10-12-2012, 06:47 PM
Location: The western periphery of Terra Australis
24,683 posts, read 45,352,353 times
Reputation: 11862
If it's every man for himself than I'm not gonna be Mr. nice guy. Thanks for the advice, lol.
Old 10-13-2012, 09:37 AM
Location: San Francisco Bay Area
12,572 posts, read 15,041,157 times
Reputation: 12118
The only Asian countries that I have been to that properly line up is Japan and Singapore. In HK, they do not line up and in China, it is pretty much the same. I find the behavior rude, but comment loudly when they cut in front of me. It usually works.
Old 10-14-2012, 02:59 AM
Location: Macao
15,943 posts, read 36,144,182 times
Reputation: 9478
Not normal or acceptable in Japan.

I notice it much more in China and Korea. Vietnam a little too.

I never see that behavior in phillippines or Japan though.
Old 10-15-2012, 05:55 AM
Location: Singapore
21 posts, read 42,962 times
Reputation: 21
Some of the Asian countries do have a problem for Queuing . But places like Japan, Singapore are the well mannered countries, where people follow proper rules.
Old 10-15-2012, 07:20 AM
3,762 posts, read 3,800,940 times
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It's just the way it is. In China, there is constant pushing and shoving. People aren't trying to be rude, that's just the way they carry themselves. Part of the culture shock experience.
Old 10-15-2012, 07:26 AM
Location: Texas
43,534 posts, read 52,626,787 times
Reputation: 70762
Originally Posted by peterlee11 View Post
Some of the Asian countries do have a problem for Queuing . But places like Japan, Singapore are the well mannered countries, where people follow proper rules.
Yeah, whatever.
We go to Hawaii pretty regularly, and the rudest bunch of people there are the Japanese tourists.
Ask the Hawaiians. They will say the same.
They also knocked over my 60+ year-old mother to get to a ticket window.
She was just standing there.
They always stand on the coral (despite signs everywhere saying not to).
They will kick you in the face regularly in crowded snorkel situations.
They have zero respect for the wildlife (that shouldn't be a surprise).

I used to spend a lot of time in Japan and Singapore. Being more orderly doesn't mean you're better mannered.
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