The "OK" hand gesture in the United States means "money" in Japan. It also means, "zero" in the south of France, and is considered as a disrespectful sign in Greece.
In the Middle East, sharing a cup of strong coffee or mint tea is usually associated with business transaction dealings.
In Sweden, drinking a toast has more formalities than other Scandinavian countries. You can never toast or even touch your wine glass before the host or elders raising their wineglasses say "skoal".
In Zambia, you should ask the host for food during dinner. It is not polite for the host to provide food to you first, or for you to refuse the food they provide.
In Tahiti, flag raising is held at 8 a.m. and 6 p.m. with an horn accompaniment. If you're in the vicinity of the flag, you should stop, get out from the car, and stand respectfully.
In Peru, lifting eyebrows means "money" or "pay me money".
In Chinese-culture countries, including Taiwan, Singapore and Hong Kong, elders give red envelopes to youngsters during Chinese New Year.
In Middle East, you should never eat, give or take things with your left hand.
In Japan, it is unlucky to stick chopsticks into food vertically, especially into rice. This is only seen on the funeral altars in Japan.
Essential travel knowledge
Don't forget to write down your Travelers Cheques serial numbers and give it to your emergency contact person before traveling.
Use a calculator to make sure you get the right exchange amount before leaving the Foreign Exchange office.
Keep all receipts from foreign currencies exchanges, since they may be needed when passing customs.
Tourists are very easy target for pickpockets. Try to dress like the local people as much as possible. Make sure your valuable belongings, such as your passport and camera, are in a safe place. You can put them in your secret pouch around your waist, neck, or underneath you clothes.
Tie a colorful ribbon or place an eye-catching mark on your baggage in order to differentiate it from other similar baggage.
Understanding the difference between "reserved" and "guaranteed": Hotel rooms are usually "reserved" till 6 p.m., but before checking in, you can use your credit card to make it "guaranteed".
"Nonstop" and "Direct Flight" often cause confusion: "Nonstop" means no stops during the trip; "Direct Flight" means at least one stopover before arriving at the destination.
Most car rental proprietors have more large-sized cars than small-sized ones. If you booked a small-sized car, but all were unavailable at the time of your need, you can probably get a free upgrade to a large-sized car.