When in a foreign country, you don’t want to make a wrong move, or this could make your trip a disaster. So, here are the seven things you must never do when visiting Argentina.
Please be sure to stay until the end of this video because we’ll reveal a secret tip that could make the difference for your trip!
NUMBER 7: DON’T KEEP QUIET ABOUT YOUR MEAT
One of the biggest shocks in Argentina is that when you order steak, you’ll most likely have an overcooked, dry steak on your plate.
However, you can avoid this situation if you specify exactly how you like your meat cooked. Don’t be shy to talk about your steak, as people here have a preference, and it may not be how you like it.
Interestingly, Argentina is the king of meat, but that doesn’t rule out the chances of this surprise. So, if you like your steak medium, you should say punto, while jugoso is for medium rare steak. If you don’t say any of these while placing your steak orders, that means you like dry steak.
Here’s our bonus tip for you. Chances are you’re going to see many people moving around with a thermos when you arrive in Argentina. However, it’s not filled with hot water but a local drink known as maté.
Your experience in this country is incomplete if you don’t try out this mate drink at least once. And best believe that you will not be able to stop at one either.
When you’re handed a mate serving, you should never stir it, no matter how tempted you are to give it a whirl. This is as insulting as adding some salt to your food in front of a chef.
Speaking about food, don’t expect dinner before 9pm. Most restaurants in Argentina are closed until about 9pm, so you might want to have a late afternoon snack.
NUMBER 6: DON’T BE TOO FLASHY
There have been several reports of people being robbed in Argentina, and this could affect your experience in the country negatively. However, there are a few rules to keep to, and you should be just fine. One of them is to never be too flashy.
Argentina is not the kind of country you would want to flash super expensive jewelry or draw too much attention to yourself.
Of course, this doesn’t mean that you should dress like a slob. Argentines have a style that is usually simple and classy, not glamorous. You will do yourself a lot of good if you dress to fit this style.
So, if you don’t want to become an easy target for robberies, you should go for simple jewelry with stylish clothes.
Also, don’t flash your cash after taking money from an ATM. You should immediately put them in your wallet and only count your money in private. This will help to keep the attention of pickpockets and other petty thieves off your back.
NUMBER 5: DON’T DISCUSS LOCAL POLITICS
If you’ve always been a fan of politics, Argentina is not where you should show it off. The locals know their politics, and everyone, both old and young, is well-informed about what’s going on in their political space.
So, it would be downright rude to assume that you know more than them and try to argue about the complexities of the political scene with a local. It’s a great idea to keep your two cents in your pockets and only discuss neutral matters.
Discussing the food, listening to explanations of some intriguing aspects of their culture and getting advice on cool places to check out are some of the most acceptable conversations in this country.
So, keep it within these areas instead of trying to give an opinion on their political situation. This aspect has divided families and friends, and you can only imagine the reactions it will trigger towards a visitor.
NUMBER 4: DON’T FORGET EXTRA BATTERIES
You should know that you’re going to find yourself on the road a lot when you get to Argentina, and this means you’ll be using your mobile device a lot to pass the time. The flights are way more expensive and going on buses is a great way to save cost.
However, don’t forget to have a lot of extra batteries to help you get through the long bus rides.
It’s no secret that many phones don’t have a detachable battery. So, if this is the case with yours, an extra charger will come in handy. Many buses have plugs and wi-fi, so it won’t be a bad idea to find out if the one you’ll be on will have these.
One big mistake many people make is to rely on their European plugs here. It’s a mistake because they don’t work.
Your first move is to buy an Argentina-specific plug and confirm that it works well with your device before getting on the bus.
With this, your device will stay charged. You can also get a power bank to help store power for your phone and use it when your battery runs down.
On the topic of buses, don’t be late for public transportation as they leave pretty on time.
NUMBER 3: DON’T FOLLOW THROUGH ON PLANS WHEN IT RAINS
In Argentina, when it rains, it pours. While some countries may still have locals going about their business as usual, no matter how heavy it rains, that’s not the case in Argentina.
During days of heavy downpours, your best bet is to cancel all plans because the locals will be doing exactly the same.
Of course, this can be quite painful if you have birthday plans or want to see a play. But then, pushing through with your plans will likely end in disappointment.
Thankfully, you can turn the day around by enjoying a book in bed or even seeing a movie. You deserve that day of rest as you’ll be super busy again as soon as the sun shines.
And even then, don’t expect social events to start on time. It’s normal to be 20 to 30 min late in this country.
NUMBER 2: DON’T LEAVE YOUR MAP AT HOME
How do you know a tourist? Well, they usually hold up a map and sometimes ask for directions. You shouldn’t be embarrassed to do this as no one expects a tourist to immediately know their way around, especially if they have never visited the country.
In Argentina, you could easily move from a posh area to a ghetto if you’re not paying attention. And that means putting yourself in unnecessary danger.
So, if you don’t want to accidentally end up on the wrong block, you should always have your map handy, whether it’s a physical one or Google Maps on your mobile device.
NUMBER 1: DON’T FORGET TO SPLIT YOUR CASH
Money is one of the most important aspects of being in Argentina, as making the wrong decision on this could leave you stranded in a foreign country. And you don’t want to be in that situation.
The good news is that the US dollar is like the de facto second currency in this country, which means you can pay for a few things with dollar bills.
However, moving around with huge bills like 50 dollars or even $20 will be a bad idea. Your best bet is to split it into smaller bills, like one dollar. No one will want to give change for 10 dollars, especially in less touristy areas.
Also, cash is king here and if you wish to get some money from the ATMs, remember to go to the bank to use the machine. They are usually placed outside the bank, and you have to swipe your card on the door to get into the bank after hours.
Of course, the ATMs won’t respond to you in English immediately.
Yes, it’s shocking that it won’t recognize your card as an international one and immediately switch to English, but you won’t have to get through many steps before seeing the option to switch to your language of choice.
The first step is to input your PIN, then choose ‘Corriente’ if you want to use your checking account. This is when the machine will ask which language you wish to use, and your options are Portuguese, Spanish or English.