Dominican Republic: Culture & Business Practices

Business in the Dominican Republic

With a GDP of 94.24 billion US dollars, the Dominican Republic is a financially stable country within the Caribbean. Its most thriving sectors include mining, agriculture, and manufacturing —but above all — tourism. The country is the most visited destination in the Caribbean because of its endless white-sand beaches and friendly atmosphere.

The Dominican Republic isn’t only known for its beauty and wonders; its thriving economy and well-established service culture have also attracted distinguished and well-known outsourcing businesses, such as Sourcefit. But whether you’re planning to work or do business in the Dominican Republic, there are several things you might want to consider. 


The Dominican Republic is located on the island of Hispaniola and shares its territory with Haiti. It has a population of 11 million people, as reported in January 2022. The capital city, the hub where most industrial companies are set, is overly dense with 3,458,000 people. This overpopulation affects traffic and may cause major jams during peak hours. This is important to consider when planning business meetings or business-related activities in Santo Domingo.


Spanish is the official language of the Dominican Republic. Although Dominicans tend to be very direct and loud, their fast-paced way of speaking and constant use of local slang may be difficult to fully comprehend for non-Hispanic foreigners.

English is not commonly spoken by the vast population —even though the country is ranked as the second country in Latin America to best speak English as a second language. Luckily, tourism has strongly positioned English in touristic zones, and cultural, economic, and influential ties with North America have boosted the English language at an increasing rate.

Business Culture

Business in the Dominican Republic is based on trust, so it’s important to make frequent trips to the country to meet your clients or contacts in person. First meetings are usually formal, and it’s customary to shake hands while making eye contact and smiling in a warm and polite manner.

Dominicans also expect you to be well-prepared for business meetings. So make sure you have a business card translated into Spanish, as well as any other relevant documentation.

Networking Can Open Doors for You

Business in the Dominican Republic

Networking and establishing personal connections are of importance in the Dominican Republic since knowing the right person can set your business on the right path. Doing favors and collecting favors owed is a highly developed art form, but beware of bribery. In a country where corruption is prevalent, paying for favors is a common practice.


Although Dominicans struggle with punctuality, being on time is particularly important in business meetings. Social meetings, on the other hand, habitually initiate from half an hour to an hour later than agreed.

Strong Work Ethic

Employees in the Dominican Republic regularly follow a 9AM to 6PM shift from Monday to Friday and a half-day on Saturday. However, some people tend to work up to 12 hours a day —sometimes even seven days a week.

Aside from the strong work ethic, the country is also known for its high-caliber talent pool. Spanish, French, English, Portuguese, and Italian are common languages spoken by agents in call centers and other international companies within the country.

Appearance Matters

Dominicans dress to impress. They associate status and success with fashion, and for this reason alone, it’s important that you maintain appropriate attire for all business meetings. So in spite of the hot and humid weather, don’t hesitate to dress in a classy and conservative way, or to suit up if necessary. It will generate trust and this may influence your business meetings positively.

Dominican Laws Protect Employees

If you want to do business in the Dominican Republic, you also need to have a general idea of the employment laws in the country. Indefinite period employment contracts are the most common type of contracts, and upon termination —regardless of the cause— the employer is obliged to pay full compensation of unused vacation allowance, profit share entitlement, and a proportionate annual bonus based on how much of the calendar year they worked.

Employees in the Dominican Republic are also entitled to 13 public holidays per year. They have the right to 14 paid vacation days after being part of a company for more than a year. After five years of work, the vacation allowance increases to 18 working days.

Business in the Dominican Republic

Business in the Dominican Republic

The Dominican Republic is a favored destination for doing business. It offers a wide range of opportunities, from low-cost and top-notch services, to affordable infrastructure and strong cultural affinity with the United States. Some of its well-known companies are Scotiabank, KPMG, and Nestle.

To learn more about nearshoring in the Dominican Republic, you can read our 5 Benefits of Nearshoring in the Dominican Republic article. We invite you to follow us on social media and to visit our website to learn more about our services.

banner-finalAbout Us: Sourcefit is a widely recognized US-managed business process outsourcing company based in Manila, Philippines. We proudly serve over 100 clients with a workforce of more than 1,300 employees. Our global centers can serve multiple markets, and our staff is highly proficient in English, Spanish, French, and Portuguese. Whether you need a few or many employees, we can help you achieve your business goals and build high-quality offshore teams.

Latest Awards

Sourcefit’s commitment to excellence has been recognized through numerous industry awards and certifications.

We recently received the Fortress Cyber Security Award from the Business Intelligence Group. Sourcefit was also honored with the prestigious recognition of Best Outsourcing Solutions Provider in the Philippines during the 2023 Business Excellence Awards.

Other awards include: FT ranking of 500 high-growth Asia-Pacific, The Marketing Excellence Awards, Inquirer Growth ChampionHR Asia Awards, among others.

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