What Are Social Graces in Public Places?

Social graces are rules of etiquette that guide how a person with good manners behaves while in public places. Conducting oneself in a manner that is considered courteous includes being polite and respecting the personal space of others.

Appropriate social graces in public places include cell phone etiquette. When a cell phone call comes in during a meeting, dinner or formal social gathering, it is considered polite to let the call go to voice mail. Talking on the phone while others are enjoying person conversation is disruptive. For emergency calls, the person excuses themselves from the room and takes the call in private.

When waiting in line, butting in front of others is frowned upon. Those with good manners go to the end of the line and wait their turn.

Practicing good table manners is one social grace that is important to adapt. Good table manners include chewing with the mouth closed, keeping elbows off the table, not talking loudly over others at the table, politely asking someone to pass food, being mindful of language and understanding how to properly use utensils.

Social graces extend to appointments. It is a good rule of thumb to show up early to appointments and social events to avoid being late.