- This is in answer to:
- What travel lessons have you learned the hard way? See all answers
- October 28, 2011 by triplestak
- Travel Lessons Learned the Hard Way
Greeting strangers. In Latin and Spanish countries men and women greet each other by kissing on the cheek. I'm talking total strangers. If you are introduced to your friends girlfriend she will kiss you on the check and you are supposed to kiss her back.
The first time this happened to me in the Dominican Republic by an older lady that was my realtor (and now my Aunt), I just assumed it was her way of being endearing to a younger person. When it happened later in the day when I met my friends sister (who was hot), I was like, "This girl has the hots for me." I started flirting with her and then her friend was introduced to me and then another girl and they all kissed me and that's when I realized I had been making a fool of myself with the first young girl.
I've learned that you can never take customs and culture for granted when you travel somewhere foreign to where you grew up. Just assume nothing is the same until you have actual in-your-face proof or your native friend or tour guide tells you so.