Travel Etiquette Guide: Manners To Keep In Mind on Mexico Vacation

Author: Megha Agarwal on Apr 12,2021

“Welcome to our travel etiquette guide for Mexico Vacation!”


Mexico is a paradise of thrilling adventure, vibrant cuisine, exciting festivals, and wonderful landscapes. Unlike other countries, the cultural trends here are worlds apart in many ways. If you are on a Mexico vacation and want to blend in with the locals, you must brush up your knowledge and learn the local etiquettes before you leave for the vacation. Mexico is a leisure tour & travel vacation destination where traditions and customs are given the utmost importance. They place a paramount value on their etiquettes and want their travelers to follow them. Understanding the ins and outs of the culture of Mexico will let you go a long way. 


To fully enjoy the Mexico vacation, you should not only visit the attractions, but you must also experience the culture entirely.  It is vital to know what is waiting for you in the country and how you should behave. Knowing these etiquettes will help you avoid embarrassing blunders and will increase the chances of creating some meaningful connections.


So, without wasting more of your time, let’s start learning the travel etiquette and manners that will make your vacation a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Here we have covered different aspects of the trip. Explore each of them and make the most of your vacation. 


Note: Amidst Coronavirus Pandemic, we suggest you reconsider your travel decision to Mexico. To make the right choice, you must read the official Travel Advisory on Mexico Vacation. It will guide you through all the important information. 


Business Etiquette



1. Learn The Hierarchy Of The Company


In Mexico’s business meetings, the hierarchy plays a vital role. A lot of importance is given to it. So, before you head out for the meeting, you must be aware of the hierarchy and business structure of the company. Here, the big and important decisions are made only by the top executives. The seniors override the decisions of the lower-level employees. Even if you find it incorrect, you can’t have your say. Also, whenever any senior executive is coming for the meeting, then no lower-level employee will be sent to receive them. It is considered offensive by top-level executives. 


2. Work Starts And Finishes Late In The Day


Compared to other countries in North America, this leisure tour & travel vacation destination works a little slow. In the country, the companies open their doors as late as 9:00 A.M.-9:30 A.M. and get close at around 7 P.M. They believe in starting the day late and finish it early. However, you might find a slight difference in the timings as per the location and type of the company. Together with this, here the lunch breaks are quite long. So, if you are on a business meeting on your Mexico vacation, keep the timings in mind and contact your clients accordingly. 


3. Respect Business Lunches


In Mexico, lunches are the most important and they are considered the longest meal of the day. For conducting the business, companies prefer to have discussions over lunch. Such lunches take place in a fine dining restaurant and go on for a couple of hours. So, if you get the opportunity to have lunch with your client on your Mexico vacation, then you must be prepared for it. Dress formally for lunch and keep in mind all the topics that are required to be discussed. In case you have to choose the place for lunch, make sure it is a good fine restaurant where you can have the business.


4. Give Importance To Introduction


Like any other country, Mexico also regards face-to-face introductions a lot. They should be corrected and nicely done, otherwise, they will be a deal-breaker and might result in the rejection of the business. So, be sure of the way you greet and introduce yourself. Although business cards are no more in trend, it is business etiquette here to have the card with you. Whenever you meet a client, you must have the card so that you can use it wherever required. With this, you have a firm handshake with the client and then you can start with the introduction. This will show your eagerness for the business.


5. Dress Nicely To Impress


Mexicans are known as status-conscious. One of such things that they find important is dressing. So, if you are having a business meeting with your client in the country, you must dress smartly. Don’t take it as a Mexico vacation and join meetings in casual clothes. Men are suggested to wear formals with a tie and blazer. On the other hand, women can go for business suits or skirts. When it comes to color, dark colors are generally preferred by people. Remember that the country places a higher emphasis on appearance. Disregarding this etiquette and meeting the client dressed up casually might lead to unsuccessful discussion.


Also Read: 12 Perfect Packing Tips For Business Travel


Dining Etiquette



1. Give An Appropriate Tip


Tipping is quite common in this leisure tour & travel vacation destination. To do it the right way, you should know how much tip is considered appropriate in the country. It is customary in the country and varies between 10-15%. Whatever your bill amount is, here in Mexico, you should give at least 10% percent of it as the tip. When it comes to tipping, you don’t need to tip even the taxi driver. It is required to tip hotel staff, waiters, bag boys at superstores, or parking guards, etc. 


2. Do Not Switch Forks and Knife


Mexicans are known for following the rules. When it comes to dining, they are very particular about eating the right way with utensils. They like to hold the knife in the left hand. In the right hand, they hold the fork. They are likely to be switched. Apart from holding, once you are done having the meal, you should rest your knife and fork in the parallel position on the right-hand side of the plate. Keep in mind this etiquette on your Mexico vacation. 


3. Wait For “Buen Provecho”


In Mexico, people don’t like to rush. They prefer taking things slow. So, whenever you are having a meal with others on your Mexico vacation, don’t just start eating. You should wait for the host to say “Buen Provecho”. This means- enjoy your meal. Even if the host won’t say these words after the meal is served on the table, you have to wait. Once the host says this, every person on the table must express the same sentiment, and then they can start with the meal. 


4. Drink Tequila The Right Way



Yes… Mexico has a dining etiquette for drinking tequila. If you order tequila on your Mexico vacation, then it will be served with a small plate that contains salt and lemon slices. Now, to have the drink, you first have to take a pinch of salt in your right hand. Now on your left hand form a hollow shape and add salt. Then, bring it near your mouth and take the salt from your tongue. Now, you have to drink the whole shot of tequila at once. After that, take the wedge of lemon and squeeze its juice.    


5. Avoid Bill Splitting 


Mexicans don’t like to split the bill. When you are heading out for the dinner on your Mexico vacation, understand that the bill will be paid by the host. The person who usually hosts the dinner/lunch is required to pay for the bill. In rare cases, like if another party is on a higher rank or else, then it will be decided who will pay. In case you are hosting the dinner, then you have to pay for the bill. 


6. Sit Properly On The Table


For sitting at a table, you should sit in a proper manner. There is a proper etiquette of sitting at the table. Sitting starts with the honored position where the head of the lunch/dinner sits. Then, the most important person sits and their position is right to the host. If it’s a host, then women will sit on the right, and if it’s hostess, then men will sit on the right side. In case the dinner is hosted by a couple, then each of them will sit on one end of the table. In the rest of the places, other guests will sit. 


7. Rest Your Wrists On The Table


Mexicans have etiquettes for resting their wrists too. They take every little gesture very seriously. If you are on a Mexico vacation, you must keep these dining etiquette in mind. While sitting at the table for lunch/breakfast and not holding the utensils, then your hands must be visible above the table. You should not keep your hands under the table or on your lap. This doesn’t mean you rest your elbows on the table. You can put your wrists on the top. 


Also Read: Dining Etiquette Tips For Business Travel: Impress Your Client!


Gift Giving Etiquette



1. Bring A Gift When Invited To Home


It’s in Mexico’s culture to bring a gift whenever you are invited by anyone to their home. In the leisure tour & travel vacation destination, giving a gift reflects appreciation and affection towards the host. If you won’t bring the gift on your Mexico vacation, it will be considered a disrespectful and discourteous act. 


2. Gift White Color Of Flowers


Whenever you have to give someone a gift on your Mexico vacation, bring them the flowers. In the country, white flowers are considered the best gift. Never bring yellow, purple, or red flowers as they are not apt for happy moments. Other than flowers, you can bring exotic wine, chocolates, cake, or candies. If your host has children, then bring any toy or electronic item for them from your home country.  


3. No Need To Get Your Gift Wrapped


In the country, there is no such custom of getting the gift wrapped. Even if you bring an unwrapped gift for your guest on your Mexico vacation, your hosts won’t mind that. Unlike other countries, here you have not to feel ashamed of bringing gifts without being wrapped. All that is important is to bring the gift, whether wrapped or unwrapped. 


4. Gifts Should Be Opened Immediately


Mexico has this custom of opening the gift immediately in front of the giver. On your Mexico vacation, if you receive any gift, you should open it then and there and appreciate the giver. Showing enthusiasm and praising the giver is considered etiquette in the country.  


5. Never Ask For The Gift Preference Directly 


People in Mexico are very sensitive when it comes to exchanging gifts. They have a list of does and don’ts and etiquettes. One such gift-giving etiquette is to never ask the kind of gift a person or their children want to have. Mexicans find it very impolite and against their culture or customs. 


Note: This gift-giving culture is important in the country only on unprofessional events on Mexico vacation. There is no such requirement to bring a gift to a business meeting. However, if you bring, it will be considered as a good gesture and will be appreciated by the receiver i.e. your business client.  


Social Etiquette



1. Dress Properly In The Country


Mexico is a leisure tour & travel vacation destination full of customs and traditions. If you are on a Mexico vacation, you can’t roam throughout the country wearing shorts or skirts, or mini dresses. Such clothes are fine on beaches, but wearing them in every part of the country is not considered right. It is always advised to pack a few pairs of jeans or trousers so that you can mix up with the locals and have a better time in the country. 


2. Greet People On Your Vacation


Mexicans are seekers of respect and are very friendly. They love warm greetings. If you are on a Mexico vacation, you must greet people properly every time you interact with them. Unlike other countries, Mexicans don’t like the concept of the communal wave. So, whenever you are out for lunch or dinner or any group meeting, you should greet everyone separately no matter how long it will take. This will create a much better impression of yours.


3. Never Take Up Sensitive Topics In Conversation


Like every other country, people here in Mexico are not Ok talking about certain things. There are certain topics they are sensitive about and when you are planning a Mexico vacation, you must avoid bringing them into your conversation. This includes: referring to the United States as “America”, comparing prices from your home country (even if you find them cheap), taking up topics of “Narco” or other drugs assuming that people here might have any connections. 


4. Be Respectful To The Countries Tradition


Mexico is a country with strong traditions. The people here strongly believe in Christian tradition and follow them rigorously. When you plan to visit a church on your Mexico vacation, you must show some respect to it. Just like other religious sites, you should be careful with what you are wearing while entering the church, you must follow all the signs like photography prohibited, silence, etc. Other than that, you should always respect the authorities in the county. 


5. Don’t Get Huffy With The Talks


People here in Mexico are talkative and are interested in foreigners. You might come across people who would love to have a conversation with you. In such a scenario, you should respect them and reply to them with politeness. This is just their friendly act and curiosity to know the traveler. To know you, they might ask some questions that are personal to you like about children, marriage, etc. Such questions are common here and should not be taken in an offensive manner. 


6. Know The Right Way To Kiss & Shake It


If you are planning to go on a Mexico vacation, then you must learn the “Kiss & Shake It” concept. In the country, this concept is being used for greeting people. Here’s how this concept works: greetings between women and between a man and women are usually a kiss on the cheeks. However, if it’s between men, then they prefer shaking hands. But..remember- If anyone greets you with a kiss, never back away as it is considered rude.


You might also like:


Hotel Travel Manners: Learn How To Behave Like A Good Traveler!

Airplane Travel Etiquette Tips: Rules For A Happy Journey!

Choose The Best Mexico Travel Guide To Save Money While Traveling

Make Travel Plans For Mexico After The Virus



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