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Business etiquette, language & culture

Overview

Mauritius is a multi-cultural island. French and English are spoken by the majority of the population, with French slightly more common, although most official and business documents are in English. The main spoken language, however, is Creole (pidgin French with a mix of other languages such as Hindi and Urdu).

The primary religion of Mauritius is Hinduism, followed by almost half of the people. About a third of the population are Christian (mostly Roman Catholic), and the rest are mostly Muslim.

The usual form of greeting, particularly between men, is a handshake, often saying “Bonjour”. Kissing on both cheeks is not uncommon amongst friends and family, and between women. Dress is normally informal although for business, a suit and tie are usually worn by men – as a general rule it is best to dress conservatively.

As a multi-cultural island, business etiquette varies between communities. However, the family is considered most important. Timings are fairly relaxed, but you should try to be punctual to create a good impression.

Relationships are most important. You should show long-term commitment to Mauritius and your Mauritian contacts – keep in touch between contracts or projects.

 

Mauritian public holidays 

2018

Date:

Holiday:

Friday 2nd November 

Arrival of Indentured Labourers

Wednesday 7th November 

Divali

Tuesday 25th December 

Christmas 

 

2019

Date:

Holiday:

Friday 1st February 

Abolition of slavery

Tuesday 5th February 

Chinese New Year

Monday 4th March 

Maha Shivaratree

Tuesday 12th March 

National Day

Saturday 6th April 

Ugadi 

Wednesday 1st May 

Labour Day

Sunday 5th May 

Ramadan begins

Wednesday 5th June*

Eid al-Fitr (end of Ramadan)

Tuesday 3rd September 

Ganesh Chaturthi

Sunday 27th October 

Divali 

Friday 1st November 

All Saints’ Day

Saturday 2nd November 

Arrival of Indentured Labourers

Wednesday 25th December 

Christmas

(NB some dates may be subject to change)

*The exact date is subject to confirmation as its celebration depends on the visibility of the moon


 

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