Traveling to a new place can bring about culture shock for many people who have never traveled out of their country. There may be a few things that will stand out immediately; there may others that you might have to learn the hard way.
It is advisable to familiarize yourself with a few things about the place you intend to visit to make your trip a more relaxed and memorable one. There are a lot of tourist books where they outline the things to do when you visit the Dominican Republic.
You get to enjoy the beautiful beaches, go on many adventures and experience this Caribbean island to the fullest. However, there are certain things you must not do when in the Dominican Republic. To save you some trouble of having to find out the hard way, here is a list of five things you should never do when in the Dominican Republic to enable you to adjust to things and better understand their culture.
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Do not ignore people. It is rude
Ignoring people in the streets and passing by without a hello or greeting them when in a formal setting can be regarded as rude as Dominicans are very friendly people. For instance, when you board a public vehicle, it is advisable to greet the passengers already in the vehicle otherwise you will be labeled as rude.
Do not ask if they are Puerto Ricans
When in doubt as to whether the one you are speaking to is a native of the Dominican Republic, just ask if they are from around. It is considered more polite than asking if they are Puerto Ricans. Nonetheless, Dominicans have no issues with Puerto Ricans; they are just extremely proud of their roots.
Do not be too uptight if people are always late
Many Dominicans are very lax with time because to them there really is no rush. Social events may not start on time and social meet can be a drag because your friend may show up hours after but do not sweat it. It is said loosely that “the loneliest Dominican is the one who arrives on time.”
However, professional meetings may be a little different, so if you are not sure, just show up on time.
Do not talk about people’s families
As mentioned earlier, Dominicans are very friendly people so talking bad about people’s families is not very welcome. Even if the food you ate at their house did not suit your palates, it is advisable to keep your opinion to yourself.
Do not disagree strongly to anything regarding the Pope
Catholicism is widely practiced in the Dominican Republic. It is advisable to avoid all heated arguments about Catholicism or the Pope in general. You may not like the outcome of the conversation at the end.