Like their counterparts in Paris, young people in Mexico City still adhere to a more romantic notion of dating than most English-speaking countries. While giving someone red roses is relegated to Valentine’s Day and anniversaries in many places, it is still a common courtship ritual in Mexico City. “Hookup culture” hasn’t quite taken over the dating landscape yet — although tides are turning. If you’re looking for a city to find your True Love, where the architecture is steeped in history and the dating culture is affectionate, then Mexico City may be just the place.
Compared to many metropolitan areas, the social norms surrounding dating and love are much more traditional in Mexico City. According to our Babbel colleagues hailing from Mexico City, dating often involves lots of words of affirmation and compliments, roses and other tokens of affection, and long lead-ups to intimacy. Individuals are likely to be forward and direct in their approach (so if you find the subtle German way of flirting to be aggravating, looking for love in Mexico may be your antidote).
This traditional culture also tends to be very chivalrous in contrast to English-speaking cities. Men are expected to open doors for their dates, as well as foot the bill for any activities — going Dutch and splitting the bill is nearly unheard of. If you have a car, it’s also a best practice to pick up your date. When in doubt about what to do or how to talk to your date, be polite and use your common sense!
Open Dating Culture
Even though some aspects of the dating culture may seem very conventional and tied to older ideas of gender roles, Mexico City’s atmosphere is also very open. The dating scene is becoming more diverse and is accepting of LGBT individuals (in fact, Mexico City legalized gay marriage in 2010, well before many other places like the US, Australia and Germany). So no matter who you are or who you’re interested in, there’s room to be yourself in Mexico City.
There’s also quite an open attitude towards public displays of affection. As mentioned in the video, it’s a common activity to go to a public place (such as a park) to kiss and embrace. With Mexico City’s temperate climate and steady weather (the average annual temperature is about 14 °C or 57 °F), who could really blame the population for taking their love outdoors?
Find A Scene
Mexico City has a population of almost 9 million people, and if you include the larger metropolitan area, this number jumps to over 21 million people. This makes Mexico City the biggest city in the western hemisphere and one of the most populous cities in the world — the sheer number of people can seem mind-boggling at first. Therefore, if you’re hoping to date in this city, it’s imperative that you find the scene that suits you.
With so many people, there’s just about every kind of social group one can think of. Mexico City has a vibrant arts scene with many museums to peruse, a large sports scene (especially if you love soccer), an active LGBT community, a huge university for those that are academically minded, and hubs for just about any music or lifestyle subculture imaginable. Furthermore, history lovers are in particularly good company because Mexico City has several declared UNESCO World Heritage Sites, including the entire historic city center. Once you find your niche, dating is a piece of cake.
Learn Some Spanish
While Mexico City has a large expatriate population (with over a half a million people from the United States alone), it’s also the largest Spanish-speaking metropolis in the world. In order to best connect to the city and find that special someone, it’s in your best interest to learn some Spanish. According to Babbelonians who’ve lived in Mexico City, most people in the city are keen to have a conversation with foreigners, especially if they’ve put in some effort to speak the local language. Even learning a few key phrases can really help your chances. Just to get you started:
- ¿Me puedes dar tu número? (Can I have your number?)
- ¿Te gustaría bailar conmigo? (Would you like to dance with me?)
- ¿Puedo invitarte a una copa? (Can I buy you a drink?)
Don’t worry though, Spanish is one of the easiest languages for native English speakers to learn! If you want to learn more phrases like these, Babbel has a whole course dedicated to dating in Spanish.