1. Ecuadorians are very affectionate people. Don’t freak if total strangers kiss you on the cheek.
2. Unlike Norte Americanos, they are very comfotable with breaks in coversation. Silence is okay.
3. 2pm means more like 2:30pm, and breakfast time might more or less be brunch time. Unless you’re a foreigner. Then you are expected to be on-time. (Bummer, I just can’t win).
4. If you’re celebrating, you’re dancing. Birthday party? Dancing. Anniversary? Dancing. Christmas? DANCE PARTY the WHOLE month of December! :)
5. Don’t be fooled by latudinal expectations… Yes, the equator runs directly through Quito, but with it’s elevation of 9000+ feet, it actually gets quite cold at night. But for the most part, the weather is always perfect: an eternal spring.
6. Don’t be fooled by your presumptious understanding of the weather from your first 6 weeks in Quito. A few hours east of the Andes Mountains and you’re in the Amazon jungle… HOT.
7. Don’t pack like a martyr. People of Quito are quite fashionable. You’ll end up missing your heeled boots and curling iron.
8. Surprisingly, clothes and everyday items are more expensive than in the U.S. Quite a bit more actually, which will really make you miss those boots and curling iron…
9. Crime is a severe problem in Ecuador. The U.S. travel.gov website recommends that you don’t travel alone, look like a tourist, or be a woman. … Well.
11. If an Ecuadorian is eating food, he/she will almost always share it with you. It is not unusual to see a group of Ecuadorians at a bar passing around one glass of beer. My friend from Holland decided to test how far the sharing thing goes among Ecuadorians, and offered one a lick of her lolli-pop.
You guessed it…
12. You’re full-time job as a traveler in Quito is to not get robbed or hit by a taxi.
13. A volcano errupting less than two hours away is apparantly not something to worry about.
14. Ecuadorians are much more patient with your barely speaking Spanish than North Americans are with your barely speaking English.
15. Ecuador is an incredibly amazing place, with SO much to do and very friendly people to meet. :)