Saudi Arabia is one of the most popular countries in the Middle East. Here are some facts about Saudi Arabia you need to know. It is a desert country encompassing most of the Arabian Peninsula, with Red Sea and Persian (Arabian) Gulf coastlines. The country shares borders with Jordan, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, and Yemen. Saudi Arabia has a harsh and dry desert climate, with the temperature touching the extremes.
Currency: Saudi riyal
Official Language: Arabic
King: Salman of Saudi Arabia
Population: 28.83 million (2013) World Bank
Amazing Facts About Saudi Arabia
Here now are 10 other facts about Saudi Arabia you will find amazing
1. BEDROCK OF SOCIETY
Family, to the Saudis, is the bedrock of society and is therefore taken most seriously. Families tend to be large and close-knit. There is trust in family and members give opportunities to kin before considering "outsiders." For this reason, nepotism is considered a virtue.
2. NAMING FACTORS
In naming ceremonies, Saudis are very cognizant of a lot of things which are usually revealed in the names chosen for the child. These include:
- Their heritage
- Their clan
- Their extended family
- Their nuclear family
In many cases, at least one of these things reflects in the names of a Saudi.
3. CROSS-GENDER GREETING TABOO
Saudi men greet each other with a hand shake and sometimes a kiss on each cheek if close. Saudi women hug and kiss close friends. But Saudi men do not greet Saudi women or vice versa in public. This is seen as a social taboo.
4. RELAXED GREETING
Saudi greetings, especially among men, are relaxed and usually include general conversation about a number of issues, personal or otherwise. It is rare for Saudis to greet and rush off. The practice is to stop and engage in small talk.
5. APPRECIATIVE GIFTS
When invited to a Saudi home, it is okay to take along something small as a token of appreciation. However, a man must not give flowers to a woman. Flowers could be given to a woman by a woman. But gifts are usually not opened when given.
6. RESERVED INVITATIONS
Saudis do not invite people they are not well acquainted with to their homes. For that reason, they socialize and entertain expatriates primarily in hotels and restaurants. Invitation to a Saudi home is only reserved for well known business acquaintances.
7. GOING TO A SAUDI HOME
When invited to a Saudi home, there are certain things that must be observed. These include:
- Dress conservatively
- Remove shoes at the door
- Arrive on time
- Respect the elders by greeting them first
- Accept the offer of Arabian coffee and dates whether you drink coffee or not
Your host would appreciate you even more if you diligently observe all these.
8. TALKING BEFORE EATING
In Saudi homes, especially when guests are invited, meals are usually not eaten as soon as it is ready. Usually, small talks and socializing before the food is served. But is good go hungry as the Saudi food table if usually very full. It is Saudi hospitality to shower guests with abundance.
9. FOOD ON THE FLOOR
Do not expect food to always be served on a table. Meals are generally served family-style. This could be in floor sometimes. So, if the food is served on the floor, there are two things you could do:
- You could sit on the floor, cross-legged
- You could also kneel on one knee
But always make sure you eat with your left.
10. CHOICES MEAT PORTIONS
The guests are usually honored with the choicest portions of meat, like the head of a sheep. Your host would be pleased to see you eat and enjoy this. Also, there is little or no talking during eating. This is to allow everyone relish the meal.