- Don’t show up empty handed. It’s courteous to bring a small gift, such as a box of chocolates, some flowers or other condiments such as fancy nuts, jams or candies. The gift doesn’t have to be expensive, but bring one to show your appreciation for your hosts’ hospitality. Don’t bring food unless you have been asked to.
- Arrive on time to the party. You don’t want to be too early, and if you will be, ask if your hosts if it would be permissible. Don’t arrive late either; if you will be notify the hosts.
- Don’t take off your shoes. Unless your hosts ask you to, by Western standards, it’s not customary to take off shoes before you enter their home. It’s also impolite to take off your shoes when you’re seated. Incase you are requested to remove your shoes, make sure your socks don’t have holes in them.
- Don’t enter rooms with the doors closed. When you’re looking for the bathroom, ask where the bathroom is and don’t wander into areas that don’t appear to be public. Respect the privacy of the homeowners. Don’t open cabinets, closets or desks.
Find out more on Prep Beijing. This post first appeared on November 20, 2014 on Prep Beijing and was written by Alicia Lui.
This post was updated from the original titled "Prep Beijing: Holiday Party Etiquette – Simple Tips to Ensure You Stay on the Guest List’
Alicia Lui is a co-founder at Prep Beijing!, a coaching company focusing on core soft skills such as effective communication, social and emotional skills, etiquette, critical thinking and leadership skills. Prior to founding Prep Beijing! She has worked in management consulting and in banking. She holds and MBA from INSEAD and Bachelor’s from University of Chicago
Photo courtesy of Prep Beijing.