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Dating traditions from around the world


Love is a difficult game to play at the best of times and it gets a lot harder to figure out as you travel around the world. If you think it's easy to offend somebody in this country then you will have no problem when you cross into different territories. Around the world there are many different and varied customs when it comes to building relationships and dating.

For example take a trip to Albania and you may well be given the eye when walking down a closed Boulevard, whereas in Romania if you get kidnapped for 3 days you then become automatically married.

A trip to Poland could see you being brushed by a man with a pussy willow branch as he looks for a mate, or in Bali you may have to fight with thorny leaves and bamboo shields while your mate watches on from a hand cranked Ferris wheel that doesn't stop till the fighting has finished.

To help guide you on the right path of love here are some of the strange and funny customs and dating etiquette from different countries around the world.

Armenia...

During the festival Saint Sargis (the patron saint of young love), single Armenian women eat a slice of salty bread at bedtime in the hopes of having a dream about the man they will marry.

Mexico...

Among the Kickapoo tribe in northern state of Coahuila, coded whistling is used to send secret sweet nothings to romantic partners.

Wales...

Less common today in Wales, men would spend hours carving intricate wooden love spoons to give to their beloved.

Finland...

Traditionally in icy Finland, public displays of affection are very uncommon and romance is rather repressed. Finns joke that they say "I love you" twice in their lives; on their wedding day and on their deathbed!

South Africa...

In traditional Zulu culture, a father builds a private hut for his daughter and her suitor but will not acknowledge him, or their courtship, until the suitor gifts the family with cattle.

France...

Did you know that dating barely exist in France? Instead, people simply become lovers and continue developing their relationship in a much less formal way.

Italy...

In conservative Italy, men do not open doors for women. Instead it's considered more polite for men to walk through first to protect women from any untoward behaviour which may be afoot inside.

Japan...

On Valentine's Day in Japan, women give chocolate to the apple of their eye. If the feelings are reciprocated, their lover must return the favour with white chocolate on a White Day one month later.

Croatia...

A traditional Croatian marriage proposal begins with a man presenting his love with an apple that has a coin stuck in it.

Iceland...

In Chilly Iceland, a steamy one night stand is one of the most common ways to enter into a new relationship.

Cambodia...

In the north-east Cambodian Kreung tribe, fathers build "Love huts" for their daughters and encourage them to have as many suitors as they like until they find their true love.

South Korea...

In South Korea it's common for male suitors to carry their female partners ham bag while out and about.

Austria...

"A kiss on the hand maybe quite continental.. " and indeed so it is in the Austrian capital of Vienna, where many local man still great women this way.

Estonia...

Jaanipaev (or mid summer) is the perfect night for young people to romance each other. During the celebrations they can disappear into the woods to "look for fern blossoms" before returning to jump over a campfire to secure prosperity for the coming year.

Argentina...

Make sure you pack your breath mints before a date with an Argentinian. Standing very close during conversation is common in this touchy-feely nation.

Spain...

In passionate Spain, dating is all about "the chase ". Expect a lengthy saga full of refusals and pursuit, even before the first date.

Bali...

In one Balinese village, local eligible bachelors fight with thorny leaves and bamboo Shields as local single women watch from a hand-cranked ferris wheel which only stops spinning when the fight is over.

Sweden...

The Swedes have a specific word for a casual, "no pressure" daytime date over coffee - it's called a "fika".

Australia...

In Australia, it's common to go on group dates as a young person. At around 18, Australians begin to date as couples.

Niger...

In Niger's Wodaabe Fula tribe, men get dressed up, decorated and dance as part of a big festival in the hopes of attracting a suitor. Unusually though, the outcome of this beauty pageant is ladies choice.

China...

To find a partner for their single adult children, some Chinese parents take their Childs photograph to "marriage markets "held in local parks.

Ukraine...

Traditionally in Ukraine, having lovers are mistresses outside of marriage is common and accepted. Make sure your date isn't wearing a wedding ring!

Iran...

Dating is frowned on in Iran. But with a young population, online dating is thriving, giving rise to practice known as "temporary marriage" which allows suitors to meet three times, twice fully supervised, before deciding either to marry or never see each other again.

United States...

Arguably the capital of dating, in the USA around 80% of people claim they do not go "All the way" on the first date.

Poland...

In Dyngus day, following Lent, Polish men will brush women that they find attractive with pussy willow branches in hopes of finding a mate.

Mauritania...

Although the custom is dying out thanks to positive social campaigns, curved women are considered the most desirable wives in Mauritania because they show off the husbands wealth and ability to provide. Before finding a suitor, families still encourage girls to maintain a bigger size.

Albania...

Many Albanians traditionally find love at nightly Xhiro events, where young people walk up and down a closed Boulevard giving each other the eye.

India...

In modern India, matchmaking is big business. Today, there's even a whole TV channel dedicated to showcasing singles searching for love called Shagun TV.

Bhutan...

Bohema is a traditional courtship ritual in Bhutan which involves sneaking into a woman's room under the cover of darkness. If the man is caught he must marry his paramour or work on the family fields as punishment.

Romania...

One questionable Roma gypsy tradition states that if you kidnap a woman for three days, she automatically becomes your wife. Who says romance is dead?

Netherlands...

The Dutch are romantic liberals and virtually everything goes in Holland - apart from a free dinner! "Going Dutch" and splitting the bill is one of the nation strongest dating customs.







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