Indian Hospitality – The mindset!

Is it because foreigners really have low expectation from a developing country like ours? Or is it that Indians want optimal value for money?

Well, I am talking about hospitality – the way it is conceived, provided and expected by Indians.

Not just our country – maybe all of the Middle East and SE Asia. Every time I look up a property (AirBnB or hotels) in any of these parts of the world, it seems the Indians are just not happy enough. I think hospitality is such a big thing for us – Athithi Devo Bhava (Guest is GOD) that we expect more. Even when we visit people in the West we are horrified by how much we have to do ourselves. But a guest comes home and we fall overselves offering 8 dishes even for a simple chai meeting.

It’s the same way how cleanliness is to Japan? I guess every culture at large has its peculiarities or quirks , smothering guests is ours 😉

Or being overbearing guests!

I think no country does hospitality like the hotel industry in India. Just the simple act of almost affordable room service is an exception pretty much everywhere else. Amreekan hotels are functional. Of course there are fancy hotels that do desi kind of hospitality but they are way out of our reach least. Back home even at MTDC property you can order chai and pakode when it’s raining!

I think all of SE Asia does hospitality beautifully. Even in our homes – you call someone over for chai and you’ll have 6 snacks, home made.

It’s high threshold of Indian hospitality that does us in like you said. That is why the ITC managed hotels are so popular with the western and Indian travellers..they’ll throw in everythingin the name of hospitality to make you happy.

Indian hotels are the most overstaffed in comparison to similar hotels across categories anywhere in the world. Partly the reason foreigners can’t get over Indian hospitality. We, of course, take it for granted and then throw a tantrum when our expectations aren’t met.

Indians are also considered to be the rudest guests outside India. We’re so used to servility and the salaam-saab culture here that we forget when outside India, it’s considered basic courtesy to thank the staff for opening the door or serving your food, to the bell boy for having the honour of carrying his bags?

I feel Indians are used to a very high level of hospitality. Stay in any Indian five star and it’s obvious. Europe has no concept of hospitality – but any well travelled Indian would know and expect that. I for one have a problem travelling in European airlines – they just don’t know how to take care of you. Having moved to England to live here with my husband, I guess I will accept the reality…and look forward of being pampered when back home.

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