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Dos and Don’ts When Moving to Argentina

 In Living Abroad

Dos and Don’ts When Moving to ArgentinaWhen you decide to leave your country and move to another one, one of the first things that you should do is learn something about that country and its social etiquette. Not only will that knowledge help you fit in easily, but it will also save you various awkward situations. You just need to be aware of the cultural differences and the fact that every society has its own code of conduct, so if you are not familiar with the way things work in a country that you have chosen to move to, you may end up unintentionally insulting someone or simply being misunderstood because of the gap between your culture and the one that you are supposed to blend in with.

If you have recently started thinking about moving to another country and perhaps you think Argentina would be the best place to move to, you will find various useful tips in the following article. We have prepared a short guide for you. Read on and learn about some things that you should and should not do once your relocation process is finished and you start your life over all the way in Argentina. Here’s a list of most important dos and don’ts. We hope you’ll find it useful.

Let’s first list some of the things that you are supposed to. Take a look at the top ten DOs in Argentina.

Top 10 DOs in Argentina

  1. When it comes to dressing code, remember that Argentina is a country where fashion is highly important, so you are expected to dress formally on most occasions. They really take clothing seriously, so being dressed too casually is not an option.
  2. When you are going to someone’s house, you should always bring a gift. It shouldn’t be some personal item, such as clothes item, but a bottle of wine, candies or flowers would be great. If you are the one who has just been given a gift, don’t just put it aside and say you’ll open it later. You should open it right away and express your gratitude.
  3. When you are in a restaurant, always leave tips, it’s considered rude not to. A 10 % tip is expected, but you can, of course, leave more if you are really satisfied with the service.
  4.  Even though the people there are not that punctual, they expect you to be. You should always arrive on time when you’re meeting Argentinians (a friend/ business partner), but you should not bear a grudge if they are a little late. However, if you are invited to a party, you should not show up on time, it’s better to be around thirty minutes late. Surprisingly enough, showing up on time on such occasion is actually considered rude.
  5.  When you find yourself among people who drink yerba mate, their national drink, you should try it too. The drink is usually passed clockwise and it would be impolite if you wanted them to skip you. Try it and you’ll show them you respect their ritual.
  6. When someone invites you to asado or parrillada, if you are a woman, remember that in most cases you are expected to help with setting the table, it doesn’t matter that you are a guest. Men, on the other hand, can just sit and relax.
  7. When it comes to dinner time, do expect to be invited for dinner later than you are accustomed to. In Argentina, it is quite common to have dinner after 9 pm.
  8. When you’re meeting someone for the first time, it’s enough if you just offer a handshake. However, that is not always the case, as you should also expect some of your new friends giving you a kiss on the cheek even if they have just heard your name for the first time. The people there are really friendly, so that’s their way of showing their friendliness.
  9. Do try to learn how to dance tango, they will appreciate it.
  10. Finally, if you need to mail some letters or postcards, make sure you go to the post office and do that, not the mail box.

Now that you know what you are expected/ should do once you move to Argentina, take a look at the following list of ten DON’Ts, as these are sometimes even more important.

Top Ten DON’Ts in Argentina

  1. If you come from a country where ‘thumbs up’ gesture meaning ‘OK’ is frequently used, you will have to be very careful until you throw that habit away. Do not ever use that gesture to imply you agree with something, for in Argentina not only does it not mean the same, but it’s actually considered rude. So, use your words and avoid insulting someone without even realizing.
  2. Don’t take it personally if someone makes a joke about your appearance. That’s just what they do, don’t get offended.
  3. You should not eat in the street or a bus.
  4. Do not strike up a conversation about politics or religion, these two are more often than not rather sensitive topics. Even if someone else does it, do your best to avoid taking part in such conversation and you’ll be fine.
  5. As previously mentioned, it is quite common in Argentina to meet a person who will kiss you on the cheek or even hug you right after they’ve met you. If that happens, do not back away, that will make them think you are rude. Just keep in mind they are just not that strict about respecting someone’s personal space.
  6. Another thing that’s considered rude is yawning. You should never yawn in front of people, and if you really really have to, at least use your hand to cover your mouth.
  7. In addition to politics and religion, soccer is also one of the best-avoided topics. Perhaps in your country it is common to just chat about it, but in Argentina soccer is actually taken rather seriously, so it’s better not to take chances and just skip this and find some other topic to talk about.
  8. If you and your friends are drinking wine, do not offer to pour it for others. Though it might seem unusual to you, wine pouring is considered as some kind of a ritual there.
  9. The aforementioned national drink mate is somewhat similar to tea, but you should never compare the two.
  10. Last but not least, avoid drinking alcohol in public places, even if you see others do that.
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