Wednesday, 17 August 2011

Ordering Abroad

One of the first things you need to learn when going abroad is how to order.

European or American style?
The easy way to do this is to learn the country's signature dish. Countries like to showcase their cuisine and if you know what to ask for you can easily order the local delicacy (even if you don’t know the language).

If you are on an international assignment in the UK go for a Chicken Tikka Massala – an Indian dish invented in Glasgow. If you are in Singapore, ask for Laksa – a spicy noodle dish.

This method works for drinks too. But, if you’ve done some research into a local beer, don’t be surprised if you can’t order it in a local bar. You may have better luck asking for artisanal bars and local breweries.

Tips on Ordering in a Foreign Language or Foreign Country
  • Use one well- known word that enables you to communicate
  • Understand cultural style and difference in the things you already know (French fries with ketchup in the US and mayo in Belgium), use phrases like “I want that European style”
  • Expect to dislike some adventurous choices and be bold
  • Ask how people order. Are they polite, or do they order quickly… and then practice the method so that you feel confident when you go to order.

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