For James, the answer for gentlemen is clear – get your wallet out. “The whole roots of man-pays-all dates at the door and enjoy the free ride.
“At first I resisted but it’s such a pain in the ass, and really so hard to get a man not to pay for you that it’s almost embarrassing,” she said.
Will an invite back to your hotel lead to a night of passion or a slap in the face and a condemnation to the fires of hell for your sinning ways?
Latin America, though, is rightly renowned for its fiery passions and beautiful people, and to miss out on this side of the region’s culture through fear is far more unforgivable than embarrassing yourself with culturally inappropriate body language.
Georgina Blair is a young American professional living in Medellin, Colombia, and she first met her Colombian boyfriend a year ago when she broke with convention and asked him to dance.
Dating Etiquette According to Georgina, foreign women are given more leeway to break with traditional gender roles and dating etiquette as they are viewed differently by Latin men.
“If you catch a woman’s eye, don’t dwell in it or keep catching her eye. ’ Men and Flirting A lack of directness is certainly not an issue for most Latin men, according to Beth Stevenson, an American veteran of the Argentine dating game after living and working in Buenos Aires for a year and a half. “They do not leave you alone, which is annoying but they’re very charming.” Being naturally extroverted and flirtatious also means Latin men can get away with behavior that would not wash in the U. “What we expect from guys in Latin America is completely different,” Beth said.
“If in a bar here a guy whispers ‘you’re the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen,’ you’re like ‘oh, thanks’.
However, once you note that interest, it’s crucial to act on it without delay or you risk losing out, he added. That doesn’t mean be aggressive or pushy, say sleazy things to them or invite them straight back to your room but if you’re interested the best thing is just go straight over and say ‘can I buy you a drink?But if a guy did that in the States I’d be like ‘you’re pathetic’.” Once contact has been made with the object of your desires, you are running a whole new cultural gauntlet – one in which body language can play a bigger role that what you actually say.The key differences for travelers from more ‘distant’ cultures are in the Latin approach to eye contact and physical contact – lots of both.“For Colombian women it is more about feeling good about yourself based on how well you fulfill these stereotypes of being a nice girl,” she said.“Foreign women aren’t nice girls, they are loud and demanding.” While an invitation to dance offers the perfect ‘in’ with the average Latino, for those with a fear of rhythm there are still alternatives to pounding cheek-to-cheek musical passion/sweaty palm grasping and awkward stumbling.And even without the preliminary close quarters inspection offered by a dance, the whole ‘is/he isn’t she/he?’ game can be a lot easier to play in Latin America.Is that hand on your knee a flirtatious come-on, or a culturally distinct approach to personal space?Is splitting the bill a nod to equal gender relations, an unforgivable challenge to your date’s masculinity, or the sign of an incorrigible tight-wad?Love, whether a life-long partnership or a night-long fling, is never easy.Throw in a language barrier and culture gap and you’re lost in a strange new game with strange new rules.