7 interesting things to experience in Burundi

Burundi is known as the "heart of Africa" and the "million-smile country" thanks to its people's friendliness.

1. Friendly and enthusiastic people

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Any person you meet on the street can smile and say "Bwakeye / Mwaramutse!" (Hello!). When you need to ask for direction and ask for help, people readily accept. They can also change their schedule for you or take you where you want firstly and then return to their path. If you encounter a broken car, people will check your car as a professional car mechanic.

2. Unpunctuality

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If you go to Burundi (or East African countries) to work in the office and follow the company's time rules, it must be time to fully understand the culture of the time in the country.

If you date a partner to the work desk and hear this person say "I'm coming!" This means that one to two hours later you will see him. When you go to the restaurant, after the order, it is sure to wait 30 minutes or more. If the waiter tells you "five minutes" that means... 20 minutes or more.

3. The customer is not god

You only need to call a company and tell them you want to buy or want to sign a lease. Just a few hours later, the things you need will be brought to your place. However, Burundi is very strange. If you want to bring benefits or money to an organization or company, you have to be the initiative.

For example, if you rent a space at a restaurant for your party, all the paperwork, contracts, procedures, money must be brought in and must be booked. It all depends entirely on the provider. If you do not satisfy them, they can accept no money without meeting your needs.

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When buying flowers, you should ask if they sell many  flower varieties in a bouquet.

4. Begging habit

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Some people have begging habits that can’t be avoided. So you will not be surprised when an office worker with chic clothes and monthly salary is easy to ask for anything he wants.

People's thinking is very simple, they can ask for anything they want. Whether to give or not that is your right. No one will blame you or be upset if you do not help them.

5. Top priority for pedestrians

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There are not many traffic lights in Burundi. Traffic consciousness of the people is giving way to others and limiting to whistle. In any situation, pedestrians are given top priority.

6. Avoid fighting

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When you go out on the street in Burundi, you will often hear the noise of some young men. But when you look closely you will realize they just... push each other like playing rugby rather than fighting.

The Burundians rarely have to fight or stab others for a personal friction because the law may be very serious punishment for theft or fighting.

7. Do not work at night

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It is normal that many places in Burundi have no electricity, no water and no Internet.  All street activities will stop after 6 p.m. You will not find an opening supermarket or convenient store to buy water. Even when you’re in the city that seems like you are in the countryside because the night is all around.

By: Roxana Edwards

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