Habits Customs

There's not a huge amount of etiquette to worry about if you eat in Male' or resorts. If you're lucky enough to be entertained in a local house, you should obey some basic rules, but again, the Maldivians are very relaxed and as long as you show respect and enjoyment, they'll be very glad to have you eating with them.

When going to eat, wait to be shown where to sit and wait for the kateeb (island chief) or the male head of the household to sit down before you do. Take a litde of everything offered and do so only with your right hand, as the left hand is considered unclean by Muslims. Do ask for cudery if you find it hard to roll your food into litde balls like the Maldivians do; this is quite normal for foreigners. Thanks should not be overdone, as this can suggest a person was not happy to do whatever it was in the first place, although expressing gratitude to the head of the household, the kateeb and the cook will always be welcome.

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