NATIONAL CHARACTERISTICS, CULTURE
A lot of things in the country are subject to age-old customs and traditional Islamic norms, so certain rules of conduct should be observed. In public places, women should avoid overly revealing or tight clothing and miniskirts, and men should avoid shorts or sleeveless T-shirts. At the same time, neatness in clothes is highly valued here, and there are no restrictions on wearing European or sportswear in everyday life. There is also traditionally a very respectful attitude towards places of worship (when visiting mosques and mausoleums, one should observe the norms traditional for all Islamic countries), but unlike many nearby Islamic states, there is no fanaticism towards mosques and tombs of saints, for many local residents these are objects of sincere respect and respect, but nothing more. The locals themselves, especially the women, dress quite strictly, preference is given to dark colors. But much attention is paid to bright accessories and jewelry. The hospitality of Azerbaijanis is widely known. In this, in general, poor country, they know how to receive a guest with truly Caucasian cordiality and scope. Refusal of an invitation to visit can be regarded as a personal insult. But no one will be imposed on this issue – the desire of the guest is the law, so you can always agree with the hospitable host for another time of the visit. Often the host or another interlocutor gives the guest gifts, and often not the cheapest ones, so it is recommended to have a small set of souvenirs or gifts with you. Local women, especially in rural areas, usually do not interfere in the conversation of the host with the guests, even if there are also representatives of the fair sex among them. They will set and serve on the table, but they will probably refuse to share a meal with foreign guests, so you should not insist on this. Increased attention to the mistress of the house, or an attempt to involve her in a conversation, can also be perceived disapprovingly. When entering the house, be sure to take off your shoes and follow the instructions of the owner. Usually, tea is served first, then main courses, herbs and fresh vegetables, and then sweets or dovga. It is not customary to take food with the left hand. Rice is taken with a pinch, some dishes are also considered not shameful to take with your hand or a piece of bread. In urban settings, a meal is usually held according to European standards, with the presence of cutlery and individual portions. In rural areas, especially when it comes to some kind of community holiday, the rules of behavior at the table are more free and informal.
- January 1 – New Year
- January 20 – Day of Remembrance of the Victims of the Totalitarian Regime
- March 8 – International Women’s Day
- March-April – Novruz-Bayram
- May 9 – Victory Day
- May 28 – Republic Day
- June 15 – National Salvation Day
- June 26 – National Army Day
- October 18 – Independence Day
- November 12 – Constitution Day
- November 17 – National Revival Day
- December 31 – Solidarity Day of Azerbaijanis around the world
Religious holidays are also celebrated – Ramadan-Bayram (February 9), Gurban-Bayram (Kurban-Bayram, April), etc.
Azerbaijan: Money and currency of Azerbaijan
Money, CURRENCY Azerbaijani manat (AZM, put into circulation on February 1, 1993), equal to 100 kopecks (“qapik”). According to allcitycodes, there are banknotes in circulation in denominations of 50, 100, 250, 500, 1000, 10,000, 50,000 and 100,000 manats (due to inflation in the early 90s, “kopiks”, as well as banknotes of 1, 5 and 10 manats, almost out of circulation). US dollars are unofficially widely circulated in all areas. Russian rubles are limitedly accepted only in some stores and sometimes in the markets. Since January 1, 2006, new “denominated manats” have been put into circulation in Azerbaijan – banknotes in denominations of 1, 5, 10, 20, 50 and 100 manats, as well as metal coins in denominations of 1, 3, 5, 10, 20 and 50 qepiks. One “denominated manat” is equal to 5,000 old manats. From January 1 to December 31, 2006, old-style money will be accepted for making all types of payments, receipts to accounts and money transfers and exchanged by banks without restrictions. After January 1, 2007, old-style money will cease circulation, but at the same time, regardless of the amount, it will be exchanged by the National Bank and its structures without restrictions, indefinitely and without charging a commission.In Baku, banks are open from 09:00-09:30 to 17:30 (some banks continue their work until late in the evening, and many exchange offices work around the clock), in the periphery, opening hours are usually from 09:30 to 17:00 -17:30 (some banks only work with clients until noon). You can exchange money at banks, hotels and numerous currency exchange offices (located throughout the capital and other large cities, as well as at airports). Some stores have their own exchange offices. Credit cards are accepted for payment, mainly only in large supermarkets of the capital, in some hotels and banks. Using credit cards in the province is almost impossible. Traveler’s checks are accepted to a limited extent only in large hotels and banks, but gradually an increasing number of institutions are switching to their service.