What /NOT/ to do in Corsica

Learning and preparing for a trip is not as fun as the travel part of the journey, but before going to Corsica, you must know your do’s and don’ts. Here are a couple of things of what not to do while visiting the magnificent island and how to not irritate the local people.

Don’t ask the waiter to split the bill

In a couple of seconds, you are going to see angry people if you ask this from the waiter. If you are having dinner with Corsican friends and start arguing who drank what and how many glasses, you will have to forget these friends. It is in Corsican etiquette that counting pennies, especially with friends, is rude. It came from way back when, because it was an honor to accommodate guests and provide them with everything without expecting anything in return.

Don’t wear bikini to the supermarket

Change your clothes after you leave the beach. If you are a person, who likes to walk around in dripping bathing suits and just say “oh it is going to dry, it is hot outside” you will get disgusted looks and even pity. It doesn’t matter that there are beaches all around the island, but people like to behave properly and no self-respecting Corsican is going to wear a swimming suit outside of the beach area.

Don’t go hiking in flip flops.

Please do not cause danger to yourself or be the one who always complains about being uncomfortable. Every year, people repeat this mistake, because they cannot get down after hiking in the Corsican mountains because they are too slippery and rocky. Then a helicopter needs to come and rescue them, there is no other way to get down the mountain. There are dozens of stories in local newspapers, so learn from other’s mistakes.

Don’t harass women

Act respectfully in the streets or bars. Corsican women are very polite and graceful, they do not like to be shouted at or touched without permission. Socialize, but remember that Corsican men have very heated temperaments and if you harass their women, they are going to get involved, and that is not going to end well. And you shouldn’t harass women anywhere else in general.

Don’t sleep in your car in a parking lot

Stop being cheap and taking up parking spaces for days, by sleeping in a car, and just eating sandwiches from supermarkets. People will assume that you are a leech for taking their space on the roads and parking lots. Corsicans call these kind of people “Tomato eaters”, don’t be fooled, that is not a compliment, that means that you are not supporting their economy and just trying to get everything for free without giving anything back.

Don’t say that you are in France or Italy

It is technically French owned territory, but you should never call a Corsican French. Their identity is patriotic Corsican, they are still holding a grudge after the bloody massacre caused when trying to become independent. The same golden rule applies to calling people Italian- don’t do that. Now, they have nothing against those countries and they are very peaceful, but they always were real fighters and rebels against any kind of external power.

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