What you need to know to survive your first date in Spanish

What you need to know to survive your first date in Spanish

No doubt, dating a Colombian will help you significantly improve your Spanish skills.

If you are not yet familiar with the language and Colombian culture, you might wonder how to start preparing yourself for such an adventure….

We say “adventure” because it really is! Dating Colombians is unique, fun, and sometimes challenging.

Having a relationship with a Colombian will give you quite a few unique cultural experiences that they just don’t talk about on TripAdvisor!

How to start?

If you are not yet in Colombia

Once you are in Colombia

  • Join a language school. Take a class like our unique “Spanish for dates and relationships class,” which will help you gain the confidence to start speaking Spanish.
  • In Bogota, you can join local events such as Gringo Tuesday, Dame tu Lengua, or local Couchsurfing events. You will not only meet many Colombians and fellow foreigners, but also you will get the chance to practice your Spanish skills.
  • Go out and speak! Try as much as possible to speak Spanish. Speak with the street food vendors, restaurants, and coffee places, and with all the people you meet around. It will help you train your ears and get familiar with our Colombian slang.

Things to take into account before dating Colombians

1. Be yourself

First of all, and most important of all, be yourself! It might sound cheesy, but being genuine makes someone attractive to another person!

Colombians value this immensely. So, don’t try too hard to impress, don’t try to be someone you are not… Start from that!

2. Flirt

But learn how to flirt… !

Colombians are not very direct or straightforward. Thus, it doesn’t come as a surprise that one of the most important things for us is flirting when it comes to dating and relationships.

For Colombians, flirting is a game, a game all love!

It’s not about playing all the cards at once, but keeping the other person entertained and keen to get to know you more… A good flirting moment can lead to a first, second, and third date, or it can simply destroy all effort.

Flirting means not showing too much interest at first, not being too direct, but letting the other person know that you like them. It means giving just enough attention to make them want more and ask for more.

Yes, we know it can be not very clear, mainly for those used to being direct and straightforward. But trust us, that’s the trick!

3. Pay attention to body language

Body language and smiling are part of the flirting game, and it is crucial when you are dating a Colombian.

These are things you will learn only in the field. No book or article will teach you this. You will have to learn by experience!

But to give you an idea, keep in mind that smiling, looking at the other person, and making slow moves are essential.

4. Remember, there is no magic formula.

There is no magic formula, and all dates are unique. That is why dates are special.

Our best piece of advice is to get to know the other person beforehand; it doesn’t take too long…
Ask the other person what kind of things they like to do, what their main interests are, etc. A good quality conversation will make a big difference!

Then, take the initiative and propose a place or a plan that is aligned with what you found out about that person. It will show the other person that you listened and paid attention to what they like.

And, if there are two things that Colombians like, these are:

1. People that take the initiative.

try not to say “whatever you want”, or “wherever you want”…. That’s a date killer! Propose something, and of course be flexible if your counterpart proposes something as well.

2. People that listen.

When you propose a place or a plan aligned with the other person’s interest, it means you care and paid attention to what they say. It puts the other person as a priority. Colombians like that.

5. Break the ice

Add some humor and spice up your date. Colombians like everything but boring!

How to break the ice?

You can use cute and funny lines or “piropos” to make the other person smile.

Piropos are usually used by men towards women, but it can easily be used the other way around. Just change the grammar accordingly, to masculine and feminine.

Be aware that not all women like them, and you need to be extra careful in the kind you say. They are great ice breakers if used properly! Use them for fun but NEVER use them in a disrespectful or “machista” way!

6. Learn Spanish, particularly Colombian Spanish!

At the start of this article, we said that dating a Colombian will help you learn and significantly improve your Spanish.

And this is because not many people in Colombia speak fluent English or other languages. You can find bilingual people in Bogota and other major cities, but it is generally not the rule.

So, if you want to talk, connect and learn about the other person, a good knowledge of Spanish will be helpful.

Don’t be afraid of making mistakes. Colombians like people trying to learn their language, so go and dare to speak!

Grammar for dating in Spanish

Now, some grammar advice before you go on a date

1. Review the difference between “ser” and “star”

In Spanish, we use two different verbs for the verb “To Be”. Mixing these verbs is one of the most common mistakes of people learning Spanish.

Although we, native Spanish speakers, will understand what you mean by the context, it is better that you learn the correct use of the language from the beginning.

In short, one indicates permanent states, personality, and identity (ser), while the other indicates temporary states or emotions (estar). This can make a difference in the way you communicate!

For example, if you say “Eres muy bonita” you mean “You are a very beautiful woman” (in general) BUT if you say “Estás muy bonita hoy” (“You are very beautiful today”), you are saying that in this particular moment the person if beautiful.

Both are nice, but what is implied changes.

To learn the difference and how to use the verbs “ser” and “estar”, refer to this previous article on the Blog.

2. Express your likes and dislikes

This is basic!

You will want to know more about your date’s personality, tastes and preferences. And vice versa, they will want to know more about yours too!

Therefore, you should also learn the verb “Me gusta”. This one is special, its way of conjugating is not like the other verbs.

If you want to compliment your date, this verb will come in very handy. For example:

  • “Me gusta tu sonrisa” (I like your smile)
  • “Me gustan tus ojos” (I like your eyes)
  • “Me gusta mucho hablar contigo” (I really like talking to you)

On the other hand, it’s important to express the things you dislike. No one wants to have a bad date due to a lack of communication.

So, if you don’t like coffee, for example (yes, there are people who don’t like coffee… But never mind!)…
You should say: “Lo siento, no me gusta el café).

3. Colombian slang and unique words

And of course, if you want to surprise your date with your good knowledge of Colombian culture… learn the most popular slang and expression.

We use so many words in Colombia when talking in an informal way. We love to use local slang, double sense, and funny expressions, and spice up the conversations. If you learn this, we guarantee you will impress your date.

Here is some helpful dating vocabulary:

Spanish(Literal)English translation
Parchar(To patch)To hang out / have a good time
Echar los perros(To throw the dogs)To flirt
Caer(To fall)To flirt
Coquetear(To flirt)To flirt
Llevarse bien(To get along)To get along
Dejar plantado (a alguien)( to plant someone)To stand (someone) up
Poner los cachos(To put the horns on someone)To cheat on (somebody
Estamos saliendo(We are leaving)We are dating (not officially a couple)
Nos cuadramos(We squared up)We are dating (officially a couple)

Useful expressions

¿Dónde vives?Where do you live?
¿Te paso a buscar?Shall I pick you up?
¿Quieres pasar?Would you like to come in?
¿Te acompaño?Would you like me to go with you?
¿Cuándo te vuelvo a ver?When can I see you again?
¿Qué haces hoy, nos vemos?
What are you doing today, do you wanna meet?
¡Me gusta tu estilo!I like your style
La pasé muy bien contigo hoy!I had a great time with you today!
¡Me encantas!I really like you!
No te preocupes, yo invito.Don’t worry, It’s on me!

We hope this article is helpful for you! If you want to learn more verbs, how to conjugate them in different tenses, and learn about our culture, come join our classes!

Don’t forget to follow our social media, and read our blog to LEARN MORE THAN SPANISH.

We hope to see you soon!