Do not vacation in the Dominican Republic if you prefer all the comforts of home and the United States. The Dominican is a different world from what we Americans are used to. The first and foremost is the language barrier. The official language on the island is Spanish. It’s not English. Knowing some remedial Spanish goes a long way in how you are treated by the staff. Americans are pretty arrogant as we expect everyone to be able to converse with us in our own language. I’ve read this saying recently and forgive me that I don’t know the author but it was said “If you speak 3 languages, you are tri-lingual, if you speak 2 languages you are bilingual and if you speak only one language, then you are American”. Although many of the staff on the resorts speak English, don’t be fooled. There are many that do not.
Do not vacation in the Dominican Republic if you need and expect 100% customer service. It’s not like that in this country. When at your resorts, most times you are treated as you treat others, other times you’re not. Many of the employees at these resorts work 12 – 14 hour days mostly six days a week. They do not always have a smile on their face or are not as attentive as what is expected in the US. If you have paid for a 5 star experience, most likely you will get it most of the time. But for those who are just average joe’s like me who work for a living, the service industry is lacking here. There have been times where I’ve actually had to wait 5 minutes or so for a server to come over and fill my water glass. It’s disappointing.
Do not vacation in the Dominican Republic if you can’t get along with others, especially those of another country. In the Dominican, Americans are a minority. There are way more Europeans and Latinos that vacation there than Americans. A lot of these cultures are sooo different from the US. The ladies go topless at the beaches, they cut you in line at the buffets and they’re usually there for 2 to 3 weeks at a time so they have built up relationships with the staff making them seem much friendlier to them than you.
Don’t vacation in the Dominican Republic if you don’t like tropical weather and all that comes with it. Your rooms will smell musty and most areas around the resort are not air-conditioned. The weather is mostly sunny and warm so there is a tendency to spend a lot of time in the ocean or in the pool, or sitting under an umbrella or palapa with an icy cold drink in your hand.