CHILE Brennan, Sam, Navin

Unspoken social gestures

They like body contact to make sure the person is reciprocating feelings, it could be a kiss on the cheek, a handshake, a pat on the shoulder or right forearm, or a hug.

Handshake, hug, 3 back-pats and another handshake is a common male greeting to another male friend

Beckoning with your finger is rude

Clicking/snapping your fingers is also a rude gesture

Common language or slang

Huevón (pronounced usually as weh-VOHN) could be translated into different words according to its context. Originally a swear word meaning "jerk", it can be used also as "friend" or "dude".

Cachar (pronounced ka-CHAR) comes from the verb "to catch" and means "understand". Also, is commonly used in a weird conjugated form as cachai' at the end of the sentences, similarly to "y'know"

Conversational Language

As it is influenced by European aspects, many of the basic conversational language are the same as we might expect, but in Spanish. These are such as good morning, which is Buenos diás, or how are you, which is Buenos diás.

Chile’s largest indigenous group, the Mapuche, have their own conversational phrases. Greeting in Mapudungun, their language, are:

Hello to a group of people: Mari mari kom pu che

Hello among men: Mari mari penyi

Hello among women or if a woman speaks to a man: Mari Mari lamnchnen

Hello to a group of children: Mari mari pichi keche

Cultural Faux Pas

Most Chileans are nationalists so any mention of the surrounding countries or criticisms of any aspect of Chilean culture will upset them greatly.

Chileans have been known to differ from European and American personal spaces. Stepping closer than normal here to someone isn’t considered breaking a “personal bubble” or personal space to them. If they move into your personal space, it’s not because they are being rude, it’s because they feel comfortable and it’s how they talk

First names are used between close friends - wait until invited to move to a first name basis.

Common practices, local customs and annual holidays

Virgen Del Carmen Festival

Celebrated on July 16th. The virgin Del Carmen is viewed as the protector of and patroness of all seamen. The celebration usually involves carrying an effigy of the virgin through the streets and to the sea. At the sea are decorated boats all sounding their horn. Prayers are made so that the virgin may protect those at sea and the effigy is taken to the sea on a boat. A band plays as the effigy is carried off.

Chamantos (decorated ponchos), chupallas (classic hats) and flowered dresses are worn on some festive events


Chilean cuisine factors a combination of Spanish, German, Italian, and French. It mostly consists of beef, seafood, vegetables, and fresh fruit. Due to European influence, they also participate in tea breaks.

Important values, norms, mores, folkways and taboos

People dress more formal and modern here. It is common for a man to wear a suit, and a formal dress or blouse for a woman. This applies to being in public in more urban areas, even when it is not for a special occasion.

People dress more conservatively, they do not to wear bright colors, show a lot of skin, or wear clothing that mentions where they are from.

Political And Social Climate

Chile was once a country of emigration, but has become more attractive for immigration since its shift towards democracy in 1990. The country’s mortality rate and life expectancy are on par with developed countries.

Chile has a large working class, but is becoming an aging society as fertility falls below the replacement level.

Almost 90% of the population lives in urban areas.

There is quite a bit of protesting due to the violation of human rights.

The people are also quite nationalistic.


Frequent protests and demonstrations, most of them are peaceful but they can block roads. Near ATMs, metro stations and government buildings there may be explosive and/or incendiary devices from a group of arsonists.

Petty theft and mugging

Women are treated like the stereotypical wife in the traditional nuclear family

APA Citations

Chile Guide. (n.d.). Retrieved March 03, 2017, from

The World Factbook: CHILE. (2017, January 12). Retrieved March 03, 2017, from

Guide To Chile - Etiquette, Customs, Culture & Business. (n.d.). Retrieved March 03, 2017, from

Chile. (n.d.). Retrieved March 03, 2017, from

Chile Holidays and Festivals. (n.d.). Retrieved March 03, 2017, from

Cultural Clues, Do's & Taboos: Communication Guidelines for Chile. (n.d.). Retrieved March 03, 2017, from

Chile. (n.d.). Retrieved March 03, 2017, from

Chilean Culture. (n.d.). Retrieved March 03, 2017, from

Chile. (2016, August 19). Retrieved March 03, 2017, from


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