Ukrainians are extremely hospitable. If you visit your favorite lady at her home, you will surely feel like an honored guest. Repay her family’s hospitality by presenting your best manners. There are a few particulars of Ukrainian etiquette that are sure to impress:
Greeting Your Hosts
When meeting her father or brothers, shake hands firmly while maintaining eye contact. Gentlemen and ladies who have close relationships may kiss on the cheek when meeting. If you do not know a lady well, a smile and nod are more appropriate. Early in your relationship, you will most likely not be invited to her house if you will be alone. Family or friends will most likely be present.
Take Off Your Shoes When You Enter
It is considered rude to wear shoes inside a Ukrainian home. During the cooler months, you will usually be offered slippers to wear.
Bring a Gift
It is considered polite to bring a small gift when you visit someone’s home. The gift does not have to be large, just thoughtful. Candy or flowers are frequent gifts. When presenting flowers, choose odd-numbered bouquets since even numbers are used for funerals. And, never give your lady yellow flowers. These signify that you are not interested in the relationship. Imported liquors are considered a good gift when you are invited to dinner. A souvenir from where you live would be appreciated, as well. Gifts should be nicely wrapped; generally, a gift will not be opened right away.
Social occasions in Ukraine nearly always involve food. You will be offered tea, a snack, or even a meal. Always accept your Ukrainian host’s hospitality. At meals, it is considered polite to leave a small amount of food behind on your plate, since this lets your host know that her hospitality has been sufficiently generous. It’s okay to turn down seconds, which will often be offered.