Know your Congolese visitor

French is the official language, but Kikongo, Lingala, Tshiluba and Swahili are also spoken.

Bonjour’ and a handshake. However, it is best to wait until a superior extends his or her hand first.

Nicknames. Rather stick to full names when addressing someone, unless they give you permission otherwise.

Constant eye contact, particularly if you are speaking to someone senior to yourself.

Enquire about the other person’s health and their family and children.

Take your guests to some of the best shopping centres, followed by a night out on the town. People from the DRC enjoy experiencing local cultures and traditions. 

To show respect for social status or seniority, people hold their right forearm with their left hand while shaking hands.

Compliments are always welcome, though not to excess.

Positive comments about someone’s health are often warmly received.