Different Countries, Different Customs

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Madrid, Spain at Puerta de Alcala gate.

Traveling doesn’t only mean crossing borders and speaking another language. Rather it is also  about meeting new people and interacting with them. Therefore, it is important to know the “Do´s and Dont’s” of your chosen Erasmus+ or Turing Scheme host country. In this piece we’ll focus on a short selection of behavioural rules in Spain

Do´s – for Faster Integration 

Of course, everyone researches some sights that they want to visit and informs themselves as much as possible about a new culture. Perhaps they try to speak the language of their Erasmus+ or Turing Scheme host country. However, have you ever considered learning some Spanish phrases adapted to the various dialects in the country’s different regions? The natives will welcome you if you do so and integrating into local society will happen quicker than anticipated.  

The midday break from 12 pm to 2 pm is sacred to the Spanish people. This time is used for family, relaxation, and of course - lunch. As a foreigner it is necessary to respect the break, when most shops close. 

This fact leads to more good-to-know information concerning food. Due to that late break mentioned above, when Spanish people eat their lunch, they have their dinner at a later hour. That means restaurants open late, most of them from 8 pm. 

In many restaurants you will find Spanish “tapas.” Tapas are different, small plates with local dishes. One of the most popular tapas is Tortilla de Patatas made from potatoes, eggs, onions, and garlic. Every tourist in Spain should try some of the small plates, even if it’s just to discover another tasty side of Spanish culture. 

Dont’s – Think then Act! 

The Spaniards like decency in terms of clothing; they would never wear their swimsuit off a beach area. Indeed, you would be quickly identified as a tourist in no time at all if you visited the town centre in beachwear! 

You will attract some attention too, if you are punctual to meetings with Spanish friends  because in their culture it isn’t important to be on time! If you organise an appointment at 3 pm you can expect your friend to arrive thirty minutes late, but don´t be offended, this is entirely normal for them!  

Should something not be to your satisfaction choose your words of complaint wisely. Spanish people will be upset and take it personally if you complain in the wrong tone. Wrap your complaint in friendly words and be polite. In general, you shouldn’t complain much in Spain, the locals are very proud of their country and don’t like to hear criticism about it.  


Obey these Spanish rules and your cultural journey will flourish. If you adjust your behaviour and follow our suggestions in this blog, you will enjoy a very special experience and an unforgettable stay. 


Read also this blog:

Do’s and Don’ts in Different Erasmus+ And Turing Scheme Destinations