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  • Writer's pictureDebbie Reeve


The French are very "kissy" people and there definitely is a very strict etiquette to follow for La bise (the french greeting kiss).  

Did you notice that etiquette is a french word?  The French love their traditions and rules.  There is a right way and a wrong way to greet with a kiss.  

Rule # 1 

Great almost anyone you meet with a kiss, even if you are meeting them for the first time and even if they are hot and sweaty. 

We come home on Sunday having kissed 100's of people.

Offering a handshake may be taken as "keep your distance" stance. 

This may be different in the workplace.  If in doubt, kiss. 

Rule #2 

Females kiss females and males. 

Males always kiss females and usually males they know, but not always. 

This signifies a close relationship between men. 

Rule #3

When entering a group setting in a home kiss everyone in the room before taking a seat.  You don't want anyone to feel left out or excluded.  It shows you acknowledge their presence.  And then kiss them again when you are leaving.  That's a lot of kissing. 

Rule #4 

Kiss both cheeks.   In Paris kiss on the left side first then the right. 

Don't get that one wrong because you know what happens when you meet in the middle. 

In the South of France - right side first.  Now keep it straight. 

Rule #5 

It's ok to romantically kiss in public.  This is Paris, the city of love.

We have had to overcome our programming of not showing any public affection after 11 years in Indonesia. 

So you might catch this old couple kissing on the train!

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