Thursday, 6 November 2008

14.99 = 15.00 ?


What is the default facial expression that you’d receive from ANY employee in Jordan if:

1. Your bill was 1.5JD and you paid him a paper of 50JD waiting to give you back the 48.5JD change?

2. The price of an item is 14,99JD and you paid him exactly 14,99 not 15JD??

3. You asked the waiter to give you back the 2JD change without leaving any tip behind after having  a delicious meal at any respectful restaurant??!!! 

Of course if the employee was someone patient and he doesn’t usually say it direct in the face, he will only give you this bothered shocked angry blaming facial expression that is telling you ARE YOU CRAZY??!!!

Yes, it is WELL-KNOWN that we shouldn’t bother employees to look for 48.5JD change in order to give it back to us. Also, 14,99  ALWAYS means 15, who said that there is something on earth called 14,99!!! Or you had a delicious meal and you don’t even care to give this little tiny tip for the person who served you??? What a shame!!!!

These are what I’ve always thought as the default rules, or the least thing we can do as a social etiquette. And people who do such things deserve such a reaction. But for my cultural shock, the first thing I’ve learned when I came here to Japan is that those rules DO NOT apply. A client is always honored and whatever he does he should be always thanked and appreciated.

199 yen really mean 199 not 200 yen. So you should always wait for the employee to give you back your ONE and only YEN without forgetting the wide smile and the many thanks you will receive from him/her! I remember that my husband laughed out loud when I told him I want to leave the 10-yen change, it doesn’t really count as we always say for the employee it’s for you!! I discovered that if you did, the employee wouldn’t really understand what you mean!! It’s your right and you should take it.

You don’t have to be worried if you entered a taxi cab or a market for having a 10000 yen paper (almost 100$) and paying only 800 yen or even 110 yen (around 1$), on the contrary, the employee will apologize for making you wait to give you back the change!

Also, tips in Japan never exist, you only pay for what you eat and staff is meant to serve you respectfully in order to make you satisfied!!

Well, it is a cultural shock but the basic rule says 1+1=2, so in Japan it is never considered rude to say it is TWO.. (^_^*)