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Saudi Arabia - Culture Smart!: The Essential Guide to Customs & Culture [Kindle Edition]

Nicolas Buchele
3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Culture Smart! provides essential information on attitudes, beliefs and behavior in different countries, ensuring that you arrive at your destination aware of basic manners, common courtesies, and sensitive issues. These concise guides tell you what to expect, how to behave, and how to establish a rapport with your hosts. This inside knowledge will enable you to steer clear of embarrassing gaffes and mistakes, feel confident in unfamiliar situations, and develop trust, friendships, and successful business relationships.

Culture Smart! offers illuminating insights into the culture and society of a particular country. It will help you to turn your visit-whether on business or for pleasure-into a memorable and enriching experience. Contents include

* customs, values, and traditions
* historical, religious, and political background
* life at home
* leisure, social, and cultural life
* eating and drinking
* dos, don'ts, and taboos
* business practices
* communication, spoken and unspoken

"Culture Smart has come to the rescue of hapless travellers." Sunday Times Travel

"... the perfect introduction to the weird, wonderful and downright odd quirks and customs of various countries." Global Travel

"...full of fascinating-as well as common-sense-tips to help you avoid embarrassing faux pas." Observer

" useful as they are entertaining." Easyjet Magazine

"...offer glimpses into the psyche of a faraway world." New York Times

Editorial Reviews


Culture Smart! has come to the rescue of hapless travellers, Sunday Times Travel - ...the perfect introduction to the weird, wonderful and downright odd quirks and customs of various countries, Global Travel - ...full of fascinating, as well as common sense, tips to help you avoid embarrassing faux pas, Observer - useful as they are entertaining, Easy Jet Magazine - ...offer glimpses into the psyche of a faraway world, New York Times.

About the Author

NICOLAS BUCHELE grew up in Hamburg and was educated at University College London, where he graduated with first-class honors in English Language and Literature. He left Europe in 1997 to work as a journalist in Asia. In 2003—04, he was chief sub-editor at Arab News in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. He has published articles on subjects ranging from Henry James’ late novels to car launches in Lebanon. He now lives in Bangkok, Thailand, where he works for Korea’s largest-circulation newspaper, the Chosun Ilbo.

Product Details

  • File Size: 804 KB
  • Print Length: 168 pages
  • Publisher: Kuperard (October 13, 2010)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00462QDF4
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #225,421 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not Very Comprehensive & Frequently Inaccurate December 6, 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Much of the information the author shares is useful, but almost all of his observations seem to come from a culturally biased perspective (and doesn't that fly in the face of the purpose of the "Cutlure Smart!" series?), a view that seems unable to see beyond the obvious. Although the author apparently lived in Saudi for a time, I was shocked, repeatedly, by how many things he gets wrong. Just two simple examples: he talks about camera phones being banned in KSA. Not true, and according to my inquiries, has never been true. He says that Saudis are generous tippers. What?!! Tipping is not cutomary here, anywhere I've traveled (and I've traveled extensively around the country), and is viewed with bemused skepticism. Saudis rarely tip, and if they do, it is verrrrry grudgingly... even when they're in western countries where it's expected. These are minor things, but they are indicative of a pattern of statements that runs throughout the book. Because many readers may know nothing about KSA, they will accept the author's statements as facts. But he is frequently wrong. Giving him the benefit of the doubt, maybe these things were misunderstandings, or he heard them from unreliable sources; perhaps they were quirks of the neighborhoods where he lived (in Jeddah, a city on the western coast)... but that seems doubtful. Regardless, if you're presenting materials as accurate truths, especially about a place as distant, misunderstood, and politically sensitive as Saudi Arabia, shouldn't we expect better?

This is my first Amazon review, but I feel compelled to set the record straight, or at least, straight-er, in response. I'm a westerner, currently living and working in Riyadh, the capital of Saudi Arabia; I've been here for 2 years.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent February 16, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A QUAD primer on Saudi culture. I found it very helpful and nearly all of it was correct (at least according to my hosts). Well done and thanks.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good for learning some cultural basics November 27, 2012
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This was a quick read for me prior to my second trip to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. It helped fill in some of the cultural basics that were not readily apparent from business interactions. I felt more confident this time around and thought that perhaps I understood a little more about my hosts. The book doesn't cover anything in depth, but I recommend it for anyone who has to go there on business.
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11 of 16 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
'Culture Smart' Series Review:

First, I am a culture junkie and am a big fan of the 'Culture Smart' series with seven guides thus far in my growing collection. * Germany, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Cuba, Croatia, Brazil and Morocco * This series offers a compact look into the cultures of the world: their customs, attitudes and behaviors, etc. These books provide perhaps as close of understanding to many of them as a reader will have. It also does not hurt that I take in fun/unusual facts like a sponge. I highly recommend this series before traveling to another country or just to further your knowledge of other cultures.
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4.0 out of 5 stars good book for culture information June 6, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition
This book I recommend to purchase and read as I wanted to have an idea of Saudi culture because I met a new friend and wanted to learn and respect how her home is and what to expect and how to act. Good reads
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4.0 out of 5 stars somewhat helpful... January 4, 2014
By carols
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I read this book before and during my visit, it seemed to help a lot with what to expect and what I experienced. I finished reading it the day before my departure, so in summary, I would recommend it to a person visiting Saudi Arabia. Since I did not come on business, I really couldn't rate that part of the book.
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