- don't touch the straw!
- you drink the whole cup before passing back to person
- only pass back to the person who has the hot water
I also learned that to cure a mate gourd, one should fill it with mate and hot water, and let it stand for some time (3-5 days). Then it is ready to be used for drinking. In general, "mate suave" is tastier; care should also taken to brew using water at the correct temperature. Water which is too hot may burn the mate leaves.
Mate apparently curbs appetite; poorer families may only have one meal a day, and drink lots of mate the rest of the day.