The country of merengue, bachata and a unique mix of European, African and indigenous populations, Dominicans are proud of their diverse heritage. Known for their great sense of humor, Dominicans will be happy to share with you all the things they consider to be muy dominicano. You’ll feel very welcomed in this island country with the highest mountain in the Caribbean, the deepest valley, rainforests, deserts, swamps and white sand beaches.

Teenagers in the Dominican Republic love to spend time together, and you will be invited to join many activities to make friends. Sports (mainly baseball and basketball) are very popular, as well as taking guitar, dance or art classes. In the evenings, young people enjoy the movies or organize dance parties in their homes.

Host Family & Community

You can be placed anywhere in the Dominican Republic, from small communities to urban centers. Dominicans are often easy going and enjoy helping each other. However, families tend to be very conservative, so consult with your host parents before making decisions or going out with friends. 


You will be attending a public or private school, which might provide a scholarship to help pay for your tuition. School runs from August through June, Monday through Friday (8 am to 4 pm). Dominican students wear uniforms to school and each school has a unique uniform. Schools offer extracurricular activities, such as are sports, music, dance and theatre.

Vamos a la playa ? #afsdom #afsvlaanderen

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The main language spoken in the Dominican Republic is Spanish. Having a basic knowledge of English or Spanish will be an asset, and you can take language lessons if needed.


You should taste the traditional Dominican breakfast or dinner dish called Mangú, a savory puree made of mashed plantains, yucca or auyama, and traditionally served with fried red onions, fried white cheese, eggs or salami. For lunch, the Dominicans often eatla Bandera Dominicana (the Dominican Flag) which consists of white rice, bean stew (black, red or white) and meat.

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Let AFS guide your intercultural adventure

Go abroad with AFS to discover who you really are, make new lifetime friendships and immerse yourself in a fascinating intercultural experience.

Our learning program will prepare you for an amazing AFS intercultural experience. The program begins at your home country with a pre-departure orientation and continues with orientations and other supported learning activities and facilitated conversations will help you maximize your experience, cope the challenges of navigating a new culture and community and gain knowledge, skills, and a global understanding, throughout your time abroad, and as you return to you home country. AFS volunteers will be there to support and guide you and your host family through your learning journey abroad.


The Global Competence Certificate (GCC) program will support your intercultural learning experience. This state-of-the-art program prepares you to successfully navigate new cultural environments—during your AFSNext experience and long after you finish the program. Online intercultural learning modules combined with in-person sessions help you develop practical and global skills, knowledge and attitudes that employers need and mission-driven organizations believe will help achieve their social impact goals. You will receive your certification upon completion of the training program.