A viral video posted by a Japanese TikToker was flooded with comments from several Singaporeans who disagreed that “chope-ing,” the act of claiming a table in a food court by placing items on it, is unique to Japan.
Matcha Samurai, 24, posted a TikTok video on Monday to highlight the different objects that Japanese people use to claim or “reserve” tables in food courts, such as towels, shopping bags and cell phones.
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The TikTok video, which has already garnered over 365,000 views, 42,000 likes and 1,200 comments, has generated discussions in the comment section, with many Singaporeans explaining that the act of saving a table with objects in Singapore is called “chope-ing.”
“Chope, same thing here in sg [Singapore],” one user commented.
“We also do this in Singapore as well. Even a tissue packet counts,” another user wrote.
TikTok users from other places such as South Korea and Taiwan claimed in the video’s comment section that they also practice “chope-ing.”
Meanwhile, one user commented, “Well in Malaysia we just put our partner or tke [sic] kids to save seat,” while another user wrote, “In Malaysia, we must leave one person at the table and conquer all the chair.”
The concept of “chope,” a Singlish word purportedly derived from the English word “chop,” is often seen in Singaporean food courts and hawker centers and has even been highlighted by local government agencies such as the Singapore Tourism Board.