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Puerto Rico

Travel tips for Puerto Rico - what to prepare in advance and what to obey

1. Most Puerto Ricans are Catholics; there are many beautiful Catholic churches and temples in the country. However, it should be borne in mind that churches are primarily places of worship, not attractions for tourists. Here you should cover shoulders, men should wear trousers and women - skirts covering their knees. Making noise, taking photos with a flash, and distracting believers are not acceptable. This is considered an unforgivable rudeness.
2. Avoid taking out your smartphone in public places, and generally, it's better not to wear jewelry and expensive clothes at all. Because of rampant poverty, the crime rate in Puerto Rico is high, and there is a risk of attracting the attention of potential robbers. It would be better to merge with the crowd, it is important to avoid places where tourists crowd together - scammers never sleep there. For the same reason, you should not go out after dark, get into cars with strangers, and walk in deserted places.
3. Men often whistle or shout at beautiful women they like. It would be wise to follow the example of Puerto Rican ladies and just ignore them. In most cases, such an attention-seeking behavior is just an expression of admiration that is not followed by any harassment. An aggressive response can trigger aggression.
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4. Although the crime rate in Puerto Rico is high, you should not be afraid of talking to strangers. In the daytime, the chance of becoming a victim of crime in crowded places is minimal. You can safely start conversations with the locals, who are mostly friendly and open for communication.
5. Some restaurants and shops close earlier or open after the stated time, and this should be borne in mind. Many establishments are focused on regular customers and may close earlier, open later or take a break if there are no familiar faces on the horizon. In this case, you can simply look for another store or restaurant.
6. Do not be surprised if the bus does not arrive at the scheduled time. If there is no hurry, it is better to wait for a bus than order a taxi - prices for this service are very high. Car rental is also expensive, but in some cases, it is cheaper to rent a private car than pay to taxi drivers.
7. Discussions about politics in Puerto Rico and the US should be avoided. If the interlocutors themselves start a conversation on this topic, try to keep a neutral position. Copyright
8. In Puerto Rico, homosexuality is considered a taboo subject, even though many Puerto Ricans, especially youth, are very tolerant. It's better not to start talking about it yourself, and if the subject is raised by the interlocutor, it’s worthwhile to explain your position on this issue without any extra emotions - Puerto Ricans appreciate honesty.
9. The magnificent Caribbean Forest beckons with its exotics and beauty. However, you should not risk going into the forest alone or accompanied by other tourists. The best option would be to hire a guide or find a local who knows the forest well. Not one tourist got lost in the huge forest, and, unfortunately, in some cases, everything ended with the death of travelers.
10. There are many insects in hot Puerto Rico. In order not to spoil the holiday through such an unpleasant disease as Dengue fever, it is very important to use insect repellent.
11. In cities, traffic jams may result in a loss of time, so travelers wishing to explore the city can just take a walk.
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12. Before you go to Puerto Rico, be sure to learn a few basic phrases in Spanish or speak English. Although the island has two official languages, Spanish and English, English alone can be enough in large cities. Planning to visit smaller towns and rural areas, it is better to learn Spanish - it is very likely that locals aren't fluent in English here.
13. Shorts and flip-flops are things suitable only for beaches. Tourists are immediately recognized in those walking around the city and even visiting restaurants being dressed like that. Try to dress appropriately.
14. Many Puerto Ricans carry firearms, and some can shoot in the air just for fun. So if you hear shots, it is better to go away quickly - accidental injuries are not uncommon.
15. Old San Juan and the historic city of La Perla may look like great vacation destinations, but it’s better not to stay here long. The crime rate is very high due to the drug mafia, so wandering around the neighborhood alone, especially after sunset, is extremely risky.
Puerto Rico guide chapters 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

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