When arriving in Saudi Arabia as a newcomer, one must be prepared for the “Art of Kissing, Saudi Style.” Whether male or female it is not unusual for Saudis to greet guests with a kiss. However that being said, in business most Saudi men will extend a handshake to a Western expat before giving them a kiss. But Saudis greeting Saudis will inevitably always kiss as that is part of the culture. I wrote an earlier post about women greeting women and how they kiss. So to be fair I realized I needed to cover the same topic for the men as well.
A Saudi man greeting another Saudi man whom he knows and respects will likely shake his hand, embrace him and kiss him. Usually like with the women, the kiss will take place on either side of the cheek. Sometimes they will exchange multiple “air kisses” to the sides of each others neck. Other times Saudi men who are well known to one another may share a brief “nose kiss” which is the tips of the noses touching. Or if a Saudi man is an elder, the younger male may show his respect with a kiss to the shoulder, the hand or perhaps on the forehead. This manner in showing of affection is a natural custom and tradition in Saudi Arabia.
However as we all know, a video in fact can say a thousand words or more, so to help illustrate how Saudi men may choose to kiss, I’ve included this “helpful” video.
Filed under: culture, friendship, gender, Saudi Arabia, Saudi culture, Saudi customs, Saudi Living, travel, Uncategorized Tagged: | culture, culture shock, customs, gender, gender issues, KSA, Saudi, Saudi Arabia, Saudi culture, Saudi customs, travel