Although settling down to a new life in Turkey is an exciting time and riddled with exciting challenges ahead, getting to know the local culture – and the etiquette in particular – is extremely important. The good news is that Turkey is very open towards foreigners, but it’s obviously necessary to respect the local culture and values. If you bought property in Turkey and are planning on establishing yourself in this beautiful country, take some time to read the following tips from us here at Oceanwide Properties to familarize yourself with that all important etiquette:
You’ll find that Turkish citizens tend to be passionately patriotic. They love their country, history, culture and way of life. If you mingle with the locals where you have settled then ask them about their way of life and traditions – Turks are always happy to share, tell stories and explain to foreigners what they are rightly proud of when it comes to their own country and way of life.
Locals vs. Expats
It would prove very comfortable to find your own property in Turkey, and settle for a lifestyle where you only mingle with other expats – but a bit boring too, it has to be said. Especially within the past few years, Turkey’s expat community has been growing fast. Because of this it’s easy to just stick to socializing with ex-pats. But it’s better to make an effort and at least attempt to interact with locals by asking about their traditions and interests. Turkey’s culture and history have plenty to offer foreigners after all – so why not skip the next upcoming expat meeting for a dinner or sociable get-together with your local Turkish neighbours instead?
Body Language & Gestures
Turks are an expressive people and you’ll notice this in their body language. The latter can differ immensely between cultures and religions. But by learning the local body language, you will learn to become more in tune with the real Turkish culture and its people. One important and traditional gesture is hand kissing, especially among family members and friends. Having said that, like in the UK, hand shakes are also equally important at both social and business meetings.
Don’t be too alarmed by the Turkish people’s sense of personal space. That’s because they don’t have the same sense of distance as people from the UK or US – which can seem quite disquieting at times. However, provided you are aware of this fact it really shouldn’t prove to be too much of a problem. Even Turkish people you might meet on the street or at markets for instance will intrude your personal space. Just try and get used to it – and no doubt in time you will.
When looking at property for sale in Turkey, you will no doubt encounter the local and traditional culture. To ease into your new way of life why not contact the team here at Oceanwide Properties for advice? Our estate agents can assist in any property or assimilation query you might have – and indeed would be happy to.