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Christmas Market Umbrella Etiquette

Here in the UK, umbrella etiquette is essential, Holding, closing, opening, carrying and shaking off your brolly is all an art form if you want to avoid poking fellow pedestrians in the eye of showering them in rain. Of course, this becomes more difficult in public places.

At this time of year, however, towns and cities are filling up with their annual Christmas markets. In order to help you navigate your way safely through the crowds of festive pedestrians, read these top tips on perfecting your umbrella etiquette.

Opening and Closing

Putting up and closing your brolly is a very crucial part of umbrella etiquette and doing it right can make all the difference between causing fury and chaos and having an incident-free outing.

Christmas markets have a wide range of shops, cafes and stalls, so chances are you’ll head inside to have a little look around or enjoy a warm beverage. Before you step inside, however, shake off as much excess water on your brolly as possible, avoiding any passers-by and even better, if possible leave it in the entrance so you don't cause any drops of water around the shop floor which can be a major slipping hazard. When you are reopening your brolly, make sure there is no one within touching distance, both front or behind you.

Public Transport

How are you actually planning on getting to the markets this year? If you fancy having a couple mulled wines so opting to take public transport, never place your soaking umbrella on the seat next to you even more so if its a sturdy golf umbrella that takes up a lot of space. Doing this just leads to a highway of telling off as a lot of tuts, grumbles and eye rolls. Instead, shake off your umbrella outside and place it on the floor in front of your feet.

Holding Your Umbrella

If you are big on Christmas, it’s more than likely they will want to be stopping at nearly every stall. So, while you're getting free gingerbread tasters ad browning the glass ornaments, it's easy to get distracted and lose that optimum umbrella stance.

Ideally, you need to hold your umbrella so you can easily see who is approaching, so keep it straight over your head and never do any of the following:

Rest it over your shoulder,
Let it dangle,
Hold it horizontally under your arm, 
Spin it between your fingers,

If you are carrying your brolly closed, ensure you hold it vertically with the pointed end closest to the floor.

Good umbrella etiquette in Christmas markets isn't just about dodging mishaps, it’s also about sharing, if you're with your partner, child or friend, place your brolly in between the two of you to help reduce the chance of catching somebody walking to your left or right. Letting kids share a kids umbrella is a good way to not only keep them together in a busy place but also they will be easy to spot in the crowds too.

So, bear these umbrella etiquette tips in mind in order to avoid having to apologize at this years Christmas markets!

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