1. Visiting a new country, it is only natural that you are interested in discovering museums. However, traveling to South America you might be taken off balance by the museum hours. Tourists are often amazed at the schedules of various museums, the situation being the worst in the town of Buenos Aires. Once you arrive to the city, you will have to decide which museum you want to see. Most museums, including the Art Museum, operate at late hours and often at the same time. It is for the best to settle on one, than run from museum to museum trying to visit as much as possible.
2. South America has some wonderful holiday destinations. While this may actually be true, keep in mind that not even five star hotels offer extras. This means you will have to take care of all necessary items, except for bath soap.
3. You might not think of toilet paper missing from a public restroom but this is the case in South America. The only place you have a chance of finding toilet paper is probably at the airport restrooms. It might be in your best interest to carry such a vital element with you. And remember to tip the person working as a supervisor of the restroom. Small change will be necessary.
4. The best water to drink is bottled. Sure, you can drink regular water, but you are at your own risk. In most parts of South America, bottled water is mostly indicated, that is if you want to stay safe. There are many infectious diseases contracted through drinking water so beware of such potential threats.
5. Tourists are often ripped off by taxi drivers and store owners. When it comes to taxis, it is best that you find out about the current rates. As for the shops, compare prices and you will have a smaller chance of being deceived. There is another issue with taxis that you should be aware of. Don’t take just any taxi. Some are driven by illegal people, who are robbers in reality. Make sure that you choose a reputable taxi company.
6. Pick pocketing is one of the major problems South Americans and foreign tourists have to face. Visitors are recommended to stay alert at all times and take care of their valuables. Thieves have gotten accustomed to tricking tourists, using sometimes kids to throw something at them while they steal their bags or personal belongings. Some say that in South America a watchful traveler is one stays away from robbers.
7. If you are used to paying with traveler checks during your travels, in South America you might have problems. One example is Buenos Aires where travelers often face difficulties when it comes to changing their traveler checks for the national currency. And most currency exchange offices do not accept traveler checks, so beware.
8. Regardless of the destination chosen in South America, you will have the opportunity to enjoy a busy nightlife. Do not accept any drinks from strangers, even if they are wonderfully colored. Take your drink with you, as there are suspicious individuals dropping ‘date rape’ drugs all the time. This is also valid for cigars or any food.
9. Watch out when you stop at the red light. If you are not careful, you might wake up with someone robbing you in an instant.
10. If you are used to giving the ‘OK’ sign all the time, don’t do it while you’re traveling to South America. Why? Because South Americans consider it to be a highly offensive gesture and they are simply shocked when they see it. Is it a rip off? It depends on how you look at it. Just avoid it or you might get punched!