If there are people you really shouldn't offend, they're the Spanish. They're passionate, loud, expressive, and more. And if you get on their wrong side, they'd be hell to pay. What more if you offend them in their own homeland, Spain? You'll be on the next flight back to your home country in no time! This isn't to say that the Spanish are violent people. But nevertheless, you wouldn't want to—and shouldn't, really!—offend them if you don't want to make a scene. So on your next trip to Spain, these are important pointers you need to remember!
Greet People With A Smile
Greeting people with a smile is pretty much a universal thing, but the Spanish really take it to heart. Most especially when you're strangers. Whether you're just biking in Barcelona
or shopping in Malaga
, a smile will take you a long way. People here in Spain will appreciate you giving them a sprinkle of joy with your greeting no matter how fast your interaction was. Though this isn't to say that greeting people with a smile is mandatory. But when you do say 'hello' or 'Buenas Dias'
(Good Morning) with a frown, expect that same look to appear on the person's face as well.
Get Used to Skinship
The Spanish are 'touchy' people. They love hugging, slapping people on the butt, walking arm-in-arm, and more. And you ought to come to terms with that now before you go to Spain. Though it's understandable that this sort of skinship may shock you at first, if you continuously express your aversion—even worse, your disapproval—of it, don't expect to make any friends in this country. The more that touch you, the more they like you. So the more you deny their skinship, the more they think that you don't like them. And please take note: there's nothing sexual about it at all!
Talk to People Who Talk to You
Don't you just hate it when the person you're talking to suddenly stops talking to you? Well, the Spanish hate that too! And they're very talkative people too! So when someone comes up to you, like during dinner at the dinner table, for instance, it's polite to keep the conversation going. If you're not in the mood to talk, simply let your feelings known, However, even when you do this, you might still catch the ire of the person talking to you. Nobody wants to be put in that awkward position, right? Surely, you don't! And the Spanish definitely don't either!
Never Forget to Say 'Please' and 'Thank You'
It's practically one of the first things your parents taught you growing up! And here in Spain, it's doubly important. No matter how big or small your request, never forget to say 'Por favor'
(please). They're two words that mean a great deal for Spanish people. At the same time, always express your gratitude with a 'Gracias'
(thank you). It's common courtesy that you do! Whether the server brought you your churros
or you want the person next to you to pass the tapas
, never forget to say 'please' and 'thank you.' You won't get far in Spain if you don't!
Don't Get Offended Too Easily
The Spanish are boisterous people. They're loud, too excited, can be very rowdy, might touch you a little too much, and more! They're also very frank, oftentimes a little too much! That's simply how they are. It's part of what makes Spain the exciting country that is. And in that regard, don't get offended with them. Know that, for the most part, they don't mean to offend you or make you feel uncomfortable. For instance, if a stylish Spaniard
makes a comment on your wardrobe that may rub you off the wrong way, know that she may not be insulting you, but rather just making an observation.
Relax With The Meetings At Work
If you're going to work in Spain
, know that they don't hold meetings to as high a standard as people in your native country might. This isn't to say that they don't hold them. But rather, they're not as commonplace here. If a concern or problem can be answered without a meeting, trust that they won't hold one. Also, it's pretty common for people to not be so punctual in meetings. In fact, for most companies in Spain, getting there thirty-minutes late is still considered punctual. Yep, that's the corporate culture in this country! So get used to it and don't throw a tantrum just because you're not used to it!
When you're in Spain, please do your best not to offend the people here! And the culture here is quite different from those in other countries that it might be easy for you to do so. But to help you out, here are some things you should and shouldn't do according to Spanish culture.
Do you know what's also not offensive in Spain? The luxury rentals
here! Choose one for your home here! They're the best options here, no question!