Dating a Latina or Latino is not like dating those from other races or cultures. There are things you want to know to fully enjoy the experience, and to learn about the culture. They have a rich culture and tend to be very passionate. Learning more about their culture and traditions, as well as what to expect with Latino dating, gives you a glimpse into why Latin dating is so popular.
Also read our best Latin dating sites list to find the best place to find a Latino match!
Latin and Hispanic Culture
The first thing to look at is the culture. This helps you to learn more about who Latin men and women are. The following facts and statistics are regarding the United States:
- Approximately 16.7 of the population identifies as Hispanic (this translates to about 52 million people)
- The US Hispanic population is mostly comprised of people from Mexico, Puerto Rico and Cubans
- Latina women are in all 50 states, but more than 50 percent call Florida, Texas and California home
- Many of them are business owners or they aspire to be
- The economic recession hit Hispanic people the hardest, but the statistics show they are overcoming this
- Approximately 75 percent of Hispanic Americans speak both English and Spanish
Religion and culture are important, so you want to understand the basics when you’re dating a Latina or Latino. Christmas celebrations are similar to what you expect from any American, but in Hispanic culture, a lot of emphasis is put on the nativity scene (Nacimiento). There is a strong religious foundation to Christmas celebrations.
There is also Holy Week (La Semana Santa). This falls during the week before Easter. Some of the biggest celebrations are in Colombia, Mexico, Guatemala and Peru. However, you will find celebrations in large Hispanic communities within the United States as well. Other observed celebratory days include:
- Dia del Trabajo (May 1st)
- Dia de las Madres (May)
- Cinco de Mayo (May 5th)
- Hispanic Heritage Month (September 15th through October 15th)
The most important thing to consider with Latino dating is that there are numerous Hispanic countries. They all have their own traditions, history and culture. Do not just assume your date loves tamales because they are Hispanic, for example.
Get to know more about your date’s background and which country they come from. Do not be shy about asking questions. It is a good thing to be interested in their culture and wanting to learn more about it. This is something that most people will appreciate. Just make sure to balance this with getting to know them on an individual level too.
Hispanic Standard Time
When you’re dating a Hispanic woman or man, you have to expect some delays when you make plans or are doing something together. In Latin countries, people tend to be far more laid back than you’re used to in the United States. In the US, people are constantly running around on hectic schedules. Latin people tend to be more chill, per se.
When you’re making plans that require getting together at a certain time, it is best to tell your date an hour earlier than the actual time. For example, if you’re planning to meet each other for dinner at 8:00 PM, tell her 7:00 PM. This way she will be ready on time.
You should also be prepared to be spontaneous. This is one of the best parts of dating a Hispanic man or woman. Things will change, and this can make life more exciting. So, ensure that you’re flexible when making plans and creating date nights. This is a relatively simple issue to deal with when you engage in Latin dating. Just prepare for it and consider it when you’re making plans.
Remember that they may also take longer to get ready or prepare a space for a celebration. Just start an hour early and make sure that you help to get everything prepared as much as possible.
When there is a celebration, if the invitation is for a specific time, you can be late in most cases. If you’re celebrating with your significant other’s family, just allow her to determine when you arrive.
Meeting the Family
When you’re dating a Hispanic man or woman, you will find that they tend to be close to their families. This is a good thing, but it is definitely something that is not common in the United States. In fact, many Americans do not introduce their partners to their families for at least six months, and often longer.
When you’re dating a Latina or Latino, you will often meet their parents and other family members within the first month or so. It is important that their family approves of you and that you’re all able to get along. There will be numerous celebrations that you will be invited to that include their family.
Once you meet the family, expect to see them often. Remember that family is important to the Hispanic culture. It is not uncommon for family members to just stop by unannounced. The good news is that when you get along with your partner’s family, this extends your family. It is never a bad thing to have plenty of family and love around.
If you know a few Spanish terms, this does not mean that you have to use them to try and impress your date. They speak excellent English too. Now, if you’re meeting the family, and in their home, they mostly speak Spanish, it is fine to communicate in this language. What is important is that you do not just make assumptions regarding the language they speak.
Now, while you will meet her family early, this does not mean you should be in a rush to introduce her to yours. Do not do this until she feels comfortable meeting your parents, siblings and other relatives. This may seem one-sided, but it is important.
There is Casual and Not Casual
Hispanic people are sophisticated and passionate. This means that you will see them dressed casually and relaxed or very sophisticated, but there is really nothing in between. When they go out, they like to look their best. At home, they want to relax just like most other cultures.
When you’re dating a Hispanic person, make sure that you also dress your best when you’re going out on dates. Take pride in yourself and ensure that you’re confident in what you’re wearing. Latina and Latino dating put a strong emphasis on being passionate and confident, so you want to match this to ensure that you’re comfortable when you’re out together.
Cooking and Meals
Just like everyone else in the United States, dating a Latina or Latino means enjoying a combination of restaurants, takeout and home cooked meals. Do not expect that your partner can cook a feast just because they are Hispanic. It is also important to understand the popular dishes from the specific country they are from. Remember above where it mentioned not just assuming they love tamales? This applies here too.
Until you get to know each other, do not just cook Hispanic food and expect to impress them. Hispanic food in the United States is often not authentic compared to the dishes you enjoy when you are in actual Hispanic countries.
It can be a nice gesture to attempt to cook a meal that your date loves, but do not do it just for bonus points. The better option is cooking together and sharing favorite recipes from both of your families.
Passion and Coqueta
When you are learning more about Latina women, you will find that passion is a common theme. The same is true for Latino dating. They tend to love hard, and once they fall for you, it can be a whirlwind of passion.
As you continue dating a Hispanic person, you will likely hear the term, “coqueta.” This essentially means that Hispanic people are kind, playful and likeable. They can certainly be serious when the situation warrants it. However, they are often naturally laid back, so coqueta is what you will commonly see.
It might seem like they are flirting with people when they are just being playful and friendly. Make sure that you keep this in mind so that you do not become jealous for no reason when you’re out together.
The passion and love that Hispanic people have not only translates to love, but also to support. If you’re having a rough time, they will have your back and support you fiercely. There are sayings concerning why everyone should have a Hispanic best friend and this is why.
Not only will you have the support of your partner, but his or her entire family will also have your back if you have met and get along well. There are studies about the loyalty of Hispanic women. Some research shows that when Latina women are emotionally concerned for someone they care for that they become physically ill. Latino men may also exhibit the same level of loyalty.
When you’re getting emotional help from your Hispanic partner during a hard time, remember this. While getting through your rough patch will be your focus, make sure you’re giving him or her some support back too. This is important to prevent him or her from experiencing turmoil as a result of getting you through a hard time.
Showing You Off
When you’re dating a Latina or Latino, expect to go out on the town frequently. Once you two develop a bond, your partner will want to show the world that you’re together. This is partially due to the passion and confidence that is common among Hispanic people.
Latina women and Latino men are often social. They want to introduce you to their friends and have experiences together. They want to go to places where there are a lot of people to have fun. For example, dates might be at busy bars or clubs, amusement parts and other public gatherings and establishments.
They will take a lot of photos and share them on their social media. Remember the advice above about looking your best when you’re out? This comes into play for several reasons when you’re dating a Hispanic person.
When dating a Hispanic man or woman, there will be a lot of give and take regarding feeling needed. This can provide a solid balance and help you both to develop a stronger bond. They can make their partner feel needed and they also want to feel needed. They want to communicate, and they want openness in a relationship.
When you are dating a Hispanic person, you’re getting a full partnership, so be aware of this. While you can both have your own lives, and you should, everything important is decided together. Research shows that this type of true partnership makes for a stronger relationship, so this is a good thing.
Talking and Listening
Hispanic men and women are well-known for being good listeners. This is partially due to what you learned above about their fierce loyalty. They are able to listen actively to you and truly hear what you’re saying. They are also known for being bold, candid and honest.
This can make for interesting and fulfilling conversations. Even if the truth hurts, Hispanic people will tell it. However, remember that they are not doing this to be cruel or to hurt you. They are doing it because they do love you.
Many Americans tend to be passive and put people’s feelings above the truth. This is likely what you’re used to if you have not engaged in Latina dating or Latino dating much in the past. So, getting used to brutal honesty might be hard at first. Just remember that their intentions are good. With time, you will get used to them being candid and honest, and you will appreciate it.
They Go Full-Force
The passion that is common among Latinas and Latinos can make them go full-force with their passions, love and ambitions. This might result in them putting all of themselves into work, for example. As a partner, when you’re dating a Latina or Latino, do not be shy about helping your partner to find balance with this. You should also not take it personally when they are going full-force.
It will take time for them to adjust their priorities, especially if they have been single for a while. Hispanic people tend to have very strong work ethic and their work is important to them. So, when they are pursuing a career or attempting to move up in a current one, this is a priority for them.
Now, they can easily prioritize work and make time for you. Remember that it is possible to have multiple priorities in life and to give sufficient attention to all of them.
They are Nurturing
When you are dating a Hispanic person, you will quickly learn that they are very nurturing. In some cases, this means sacrificing their own needs to ensure that you’re happy and fulfilled. This is great, but make sure that you’re also providing them with the right attention and nurturing too.
This nurture balance can take some time. The hard-loving nature and passion of Hispanic people is not something you should attempt to replicate. Simply provide them with love and nurturing in your own way. This provides a better balance and your relationship will be considerably more authentic. Communicating about this will also ensure a better nurture balance and overall partnership.
American people may believe in ghosts. If a black cat runs across the street in front of them or if they break a mirror, they may pause. However, superstitions are largely just a topic people talk about in American culture, and most people do not take them too seriously. In Hispanic culture, however, the opposite can be true. Certain superstitions are taken very seriously, so be prepared for them when you’re dating a Latin person. Some common superstitions in Hispanic culture include:
- Never put a purse on the floor because you will lose money
- You can ward off Mal de Ojo with Azabache bracelets
- Keep demons out of your home by putting an upside-down broom by your entryway door
- Bad things happen in threes
- Do not directly pass salt hand-to-hand as it can bring bad luck
- Itchy palms mean money is coming
- Absorb malevolent spirits by putting a glass full of water behind the door
Things to Avoid Dating A Latina And Latino Dating
The first thing is to remember that dating a Latina or Latino means that you’re dating an individual. Learn about them and their culture at the same time, and do not just make assumptions based on their ethnicity. There are also a few things you want to avoid so that you do not offend your Hispanic partner:
- Do not call her “Mami” or him “Papi”
- Do not assume that he or she just wants to always speak Spanish
- If he or she was born in the United States, do not act like he or she is not American
- Never assume he or she loves margaritas and tequila
- Do not assume he or she has a fiery temper (plenty of Hispanic people do not have a temper)
- Do not assume every Latina or Latino you date is the same
Remember that when you are dating a Hispanic person, they are all unique. There are instances where all of this information will not apply to every Latin person that you meet. Get to know him or her and do not just make assumptions based on what is common for Latin dating or Hispanic people in general. This ensures that things go as smoothly as possible.
Now that you know more about dating a Latina or Latino, the next step is to start searching. Latino dating requires honesty, so be yourself when creating dating profiles and communicating. You can opt for a Latin dating site, or just make your preferences known on a standard dating site.