Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Warning: Five Hand Gestures to Avoid When You Are in a Foreign Land

There are a lot of institutions globally that offers IELTS training for individuals aspiring to work or study in an English-speaking country. For instance, JROOZ Review Center provides quality and affordable coaching sessions. It has various branches that cater to exam takers in areas like IELTS Davao and Cebu.

Training with JROOZ Review Center can help you obtain your desired band score. Instructors assess your language abilities and provide you with customized practical tests and feedback to help you enhance certain areas. More opportunities await you once you have finished your training in IELTS Davao and the actual exam. You will have the chance to travel and explore famous cities abroad. When traveling, you have to be wary of your gestures as a simple stare or nod can convey an offensive meaning to other people.

Five Hand Gestures with Different Meanings

Listed below are five common hand gestures that some people use in daily interactions. However, these gestures may imply an entirely different meaning in other countries.


In some places such as the North America and the Philippines, raising your thumb means telling the other person he/she did a good job. It can also be a sign of approval. However, in some places like the Middle East, South America and Iran, a thumbs-up is equivalent to “giving the finger,” which is offensive.

Instead of making a sign or an act of approval, you can just say: “Okay,” “Approved,” “Agreed,” “Affirmative,” etc.


In some countries like the U.S., horn fingers mean "rock on." People usually do this during concerts and live performances. However, you should avoid doing this when you are visiting places such as Colombia, Spain and Greece as this may convey that someone’s spouse is cheating on him/her. You do not want to cause a scandal, do you?


Many people around the world, particularly North Americans, use the okay sign in place of thumbs-up to express their delight or approval. For instance, individuals may use this to tell a restaurant manager that they enjoyed the meal. In some areas, this may symbolize money.

However, avoid doing this sign when you are in European countries. Pressing the tip of your thumb and index finger together means zero. This is equivalent to telling the person that he/she is worthless or he/she is a homosexual.


This gesture has different meanings depending on which way your hand is facing. For instance, using the V sign with your palm outward means peace or victory. Countries such as Korea also use this symbol to pose in pictorials to indicate a sign of cuteness.
In places like the UK, New Zealand and Australia, raising the V sign back of your hand facing the other person corresponds to telling him/her to back off in a rude manner or giving the finger.


Protruding fingers can be insulting to other people. In some countries such as the Philippines, pointing your finger to another person is tantamount to engaging them in a fight or confrontation. If you want to emphasize something, use an open palm instead.

They say that ignorance is not an excuse. Make sure that you do your research about the place, be accustomed to the culture and, more importantly, observe your environment to avoid getting into trouble.


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