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How Not To Be Obnoxious to the Local Population

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Content
Home / Preface
5 - Costa Rica in Brief
6 - Map of Costa Rica
8 - Symbols of Costa Rica
9 - Introduction
12 - Getting a Bird's Eye View
14 - Why Choose Costa Rica?
18 - Costa Rica Has Many Firsts to its Name
22 - A Place That Accepts All Races
30 - The Friendliness of the Costa Ricans
33 - Ticos are Individualistic
35 - Ticos Are Different and Procrastinators
38 - Why Others Have Gone Abroad
42 - Specific Reasons for Leaving Home
45 - Culture Shock
48 - Enjoy Your Retirement by Adjusting
49 - Ways to Adjust to Your New Life
56 - Making Your Stay More Satifying
58 - Cost of Living
67 - Addresses and Directions
69 - Your Car and Driving
71 - How Not to Be Obnoxious to Locals
74 - Adjusting to the Weather and Climate
76 - Choosing the Right Climate for You
77 - City Living versus Country Living
79 - Where to Live in Costa Rica
82 - Living in Your American Style
84 - Top Quality Health Services
87 - Medical Centers in San José
89 - Dying in Costa Rica
91 - Security and Safety in Costa Rica
94 - Personal Experiences of Petty Thievery
98 - Sex and Romance
101 - Going into Business Yourself
105 - Expatriates Production Enterprises
110 - Expatriates Service Businesses
114 - The Business Environment
120 - Helpful Tips for the Newcomer
125 - National Holidays and Festivities
128 - Religion, Churches & Support Groups
131 - The Optimism and Health Link
133 - The 8 Point Formula for Anti-Aging
134 - Obtaining Insurance
136 - Early Colonial History in Brief
139 - English Language & Tico Expressions
144 - Misdemeanors That Are Now Felonies
146 - Closing Words
148 - Bibliography
149 - For More Information and Contacts
151 - Appendix
155 - Index

Don't Make Your New Country Lose Face

In my 1997 book "Making Money in a Business of Your Own in Central America" which, of course, includes Costa Rica, in the chapter "Ingredients for Business Prosperity in Central America", I mention 11 ingredients which I feel are necessary to obtain success in business in the area. And it applies not only for business but for social relations as well. It says:

"Know how to deal with people and treat them as human beings. Good human relations especially between you as owner or boss and the workers are indispensable. Perhaps if business or social success by foreigners in this area were to be attributed to any one factor, that one factor would be invariably good human relations treating the native as a human being, giving him the opportunity to feel important and needed, showing him that you are interested as much in his welfare as you are in your own. Properly treating a worker can be almost a necessity not only for the success of the business but for your own personal safety. An employee that has been hurt by word of mouth or any other way can react in many manners, sometimes violently. Don't be the "ugly American. "

Again, Robert Hopkins' in his book I've Had it, advised that: until a newcomer gains a measure of acceptance, he may be under a good deal of scrutiny by his new countrymen. They may be openly envious of his material well-being or curious why anyone would leave so wealthy a country as the United States to live in their own. Perhaps because of this, foreign nationals are supersensitive to appraisals of their country, especially by foreigners they have less than accepted. And in the midst of cultural shock the temptation to criticize and compare is overwhelming.

Here are a few other pointers expressed by Hopkins that can help you from being obnoxious to the local people and badly received by them:

"Try not to say 'back home we always...'" Don't try to compare Costa Rica with your country. Comparisons are seldom welcome especially if your new home country loses in the comparison. If it wins in the comparison, it's acceptable and well received, at least by the local population.


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