Cyprus Culture

Culture and Social Behaviour in Cyprus

Cypriots are little more reserved initially in friendship than Americans and most Europeans, but tend to become closer friends once friendships do develop.

Cypriots are typically more formal with their elders than other nationalities. People older than you are typically referred to as Kyrie (Mr) or Kyria (Mr), followed by their first name.

Being on time may be a virtue, but it is not one well-practiced in Cyprus. Being 30-45 minutes late to a social engagement is not considered unacceptable. It is actually expected.

Overall, Cypriots are extremely hospitable. It is considered polite to accept at least a little of what is being offered to you even if you do not want it. This applies most often to food and drink.

Cypriots speak more loudly and with more hand and facial gestures than western Europeans. A friendly discussion may look like an argument to the outsider.

Among friends (male-female, female-female), a kiss on each cheek is a common greeting; otherwise a handshake will do. Men do not typically kiss, unless they are old friends. Young female friends will sometimes hold hands.

Cypriots are quite trendy when it comes to clothing. Styles are similar to the US or Europe, but probably a bit dressier. Even for the younger generations, a typical going-out outfit definitely would not involve shorts and sandals.

Binge drinking is not part of Cypriot culture, and losing control in public is not viewed as desirable.

Musical taste in Cyprus tends toward a blended mix of Euro-pop, techno, American hip-hop and Greek music. Developing a taste or at least a tolerance for Greek music will definitely help you improve your experience on the island.

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