Top tips for visiting Argentina
Argentina is listed by the United Nations World Tourism Organization as the fourth most popular country in the Americas for tourists, with nearly 7 million annual visitors (2017). Covering a massive 1 million-plus square miles, it’s the eighth-largest country in the world, and with a population of just under 45 million (2019), it is a sparsely populated country with plenty of room to explore.
Take a travel adapter
Unless you are coming from a European country, chances are you’ll need to pack an adapter plug to be able to charge your laptop, smartphone and camera batteries. The Sublime Ware Multi-Country Travel Adapter is perfect, with the right converter for Argentina and four USB connectors. Check our Argentina travel adapter guide for more info.
Learn some Spanish
Visiting any country, it’s always nice to be able to speak some local language and Spanish is a useful language to know. It’s the second most spoken language in the world after Mandarin with 480 million speakers, so you are bound to use it again.
Weather and what to pack
Argentina is so big that the weather varies hugely depending on where you are. In Buenos Aires, fashion takes priority over practicality, but head up into the mountains and you’ll need serious winter clothes. The best advice is to pack layers, so you can easily add extra when in cold areas.
Not everywhere will accept cards, so it is essential to have at least some cash at all times. Even modern supermarkets and fast-food chains don’t all accept them, so don’t be surprised when the cashier says cash only. By the same token, don’t have too much cash as the Argentinian Peso has very little value outside of the country.
There is a good bus system in Argentina, that can get you around all the tourist areas of the country, but prices can be very high and a bit hit and miss. Use the Urquiza and Andesmar websites to find the best prices.
Bear in mind that the distances can be huge and busses may take several days. For this reason, using the Aerolineas website to find domestic flights could be a huge timesaver and often it’s no more expensive as the bus.
World-famous for its steak, it’s something you have to do when in Argentina. Mealtime with Argentinians is slow, enjoying the time together, it’s a social event and not to be rushed. Take your time and slow down! Evening meal times in Argentina can be surprisingly late, normally starting after 9 pm and even after 11 pm on the weekend.
Watch out for pickpockets
As with many countries, when you’re in big cities such as Buenos Aires, you need to watch out for pickpockets, particularly in tourist areas. It’s very easy to become comfortable and distracted when doing the sites, so just bear this in mind.
Don’t be surprised by strangers that try to cheek kiss you, it’s very much a part of the culture and you’ll quickly get used to it. It’s not really a kiss, but more a touching of cheeks.
Las Islas Malvinas
This is still a very sensitive subject. If you don’t know the history, research the Falkland Islands war, but put simply, don’t wear anything with a British or English Flag and definitely don’t refer to them as the Falkland Islands!
Avoid these scams
Watch out when taking a taxi for two common scams. At the airport, you may be approached to pay in advance for a taxi, but when you get to the taxi, the driver will claim he knows nothing about the pre-payment and you’ll have to pay again. Another common scam is giving change in fake peso’s or even saying that the note you have given him is a fake (after he has swapped it for a fake one!).
Take the Sublime Ware Multi-Country Travel Adapter to make sure you keep all your devices charged and don’t miss a single photo opportunity. An adapter plug is essential to pack in your hand luggage.