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Business etiquette, language & culture

Overview

Spanish is the official language of Argentina with characteristic accents across the country which differentiates it from Spanish spoken in Spain. English is also widely spoken in Argentina, particularly amongst the younger generation, but there are still many who do not speak it. Having a basic knowledge of Spanish will help you make a good impression.

The official language of business is Spanish, even in cosmopolitan Buenos Aires, so if your Spanish is not good you will need an interpreter. The DIT team in Buenos Aires at: https://www.gov.uk/world/organisations/department-for-international-trade-argentina#contact-us can provide a list of suitable interpreters.

Also be aware, that people from the USA are regarded as ‘North’ Americans (not Americans) – Argentinians are also ‘Americans’.

Women have equal rights in Argentina and it is not uncommon to find women in the most senior positions.

Smart, stylish business attire is expected and is more formal in Argentina than in Europe, and the use of professional titles is common. If titles do not exist then you should use Señor (Mr), Señora (Ms) or Señorita (Miss) – followed by the family name. Respect and honour are considered paramount.

Timings can be flexible, so it may be difficult to arrange more than one or two meetings in a day. You should always arrive punctually, but depending on the seniority of the person you are meeting it is not unusual for them to arrive late. Be aware also, that decisions are often not made at meetings – they are for discussion.

Business hours in the cities tend to be 8.00am-5.00pm, but it is not uncommon to continue socialising outside of the workplace, for instance over lunch or dinner. Both are considered important relationship-building opportunities. Remember, relationships are most important. You should show long-term commitment to Argentina and your Argentinean contacts – keep in touch between contracts or projects.

 

Argentine public holidays

2018

Date:

Details:

Monday 9th July

Independence Day

Monday 20th August

Death of San Martin

Monday 15th October

Day of Respect for Cultural Diversity

Monday 19th November

National Sovereignty Day

Saturday 8th December

Immaculate Conception

Monday 24th December

Christmas Eve

Tuesday 25th December

Christmas Day

Monday 31st December

New Year's Eve

 

2019

Date:

Details:

Tuesday 1st January

New Year's Day

Monday 4th March

Carnival

Tuesday 5th March

Carnival

Sunday 24th March

Truth and Justice Day

Tuesday 2nd April

Day of the Veterans and Fallen in the Malvinas conflict

Friday 19th April

Good Friday

Wednesday 1st May

Labour Day

Saturday 25th May

Revolution Day

Monday 17th June

Martín Miguel de Güemes' Day

Thursday 20th June

Flag Day

Monday 8th July

Independence Day Holiday

Tuesday 9th July

Independence Day

Saturday 17th August

Death of San Martin

Monday 19th August

Death of San Martin Holiday

Saturday 12th October

Day of Respect for Cultural Diversity

Monday 14th October

Day of Respect for Cultural Diversity Holiday

Monday 18th November

National Sovereignty Day

Sunday 8th December

Immaculate Conception

Wednesday 25th December

Christmas Day

(NB some dates may be subject to change)


 

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