When visiting Indonesia, visitors should observe
local customs and practices. Some common courtesies and customs are
as follows :
Although handshakes are generally acceptable for both men and women,
some Muslim ladies may acknowledge introductions to gentlemen by merely
nodding and smiling.
A handshake should only be initiated by ladies. The traditional greeting
or salam resembles a handshake with both hands but without the grasp.
The man offers both hands, lightly touches his friends outstretched
hands, and then brings his hands to his chest to mean, "I greet
you from my heart". The visitor should reciprocate the salam.
It is polite to call before visiting a home.
Shoes must always be removed when entering a home.
Drinks are generally offered to guests. It is polite to accept.
The right hand is always used when eating with one's hand or giving
and receiving objects. The right forefinger is not used to point at
places, objects or persons. Instead, the thumb of the right hand with
four fingers folded under is the preferred usage.
Shoes must be removed when entering places of worship such as mosques
and temples. Some mosques provide robes and scarves for female visitors.
Taking photographs at places of worship is usually permitted but always
ask permission beforehand.
Toasting is not a common practice in .
The country's large Muslim population does not drink alcohol.