29 Dominican Republic Slang Words To Know Before Visiting The Caribbean

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Learning (even a little) Dominican Republic slang will go a long should you decide to visit the Caribbean island that gave the world Merengue and Bachata dancing.

Although this is a Spanish speaking country, many people in Latin America would tell you that Dominicans have their own 2nd language (i.e. local slang).

In this post, we’ll cover the most popular Dominican Republic slang, straight from the streets of Santo Domingo.

Sidenote: The post is the latest in our Spanish slang series, where we explore the best slang from Spanish speaking countries.

You can read more posts from our slang series here:


1) Qué lo que

The locals probably won’t greet you with “normal” Spanish. Instead, this is what you’re likely to hear.

  • ¿Qué lo que, cómo va todo? – What’s up? How’s everything?

2) Dímelo cantando

We love this one. Instead of saying what’s new, you say “dímelo cantando”, which literally means “tell it to me singing”.

You gotta love Dominican Republic slang.

  • Qué lo que? Dímelo cantando  – What’s up? Tell me everything

3) Tranqui

Short for “tranquilo”, with a similar translation – used to express quiet, chill or nothing happening.

  • Me voy a quedar tranqui en casa esta noche – I’m going to chill at home tonight

4) Chillaxing

Another favorite – when you’re chilling and relaxing at the same time.

  • No estoy haciendo nada, solo chillaxing – I’m not doing anything, just chilling

5) Una fría

Nobody likes warm beer – especially on a Caribbean island . When you want a beer, you can order “una fría” which means a cold one.

  • Dame una fría, por favor – Give me a cold beer, please

6) Pana

A popular term for close friends, which you can also hear in other Spanish speaking countries.

  • Estudiamos juntos en el colegio, somos panas – We studied together at school, we’re good friends.

7) Dame dato

Literally means “give me data”, and is used to ask for information.

  • Dame data, ¿qué lo que para esta noche? – Give me details, what are we doing tonight?

8) Ñapa

Another word for a tip in the DR.

  • Les dejé propina y una ñapa porque me gustó el servicio que dieron – I left a tip and something extra because I liked the service they gave

9) Mano, Mana

Short version for hermano (brother) o hermana (sister), but doesn’t always refer to family, as it can be used to talk about close friends (i.e my bro).

  • ¿Qué pasó mano, todo bien? – What’s up bro, everything’s cool?

10) Coro

Coro translates to “chorus”, but it’s also Dominican Republic slang for a big party.

  • El sábado tenemos un coro, y no puedes faltar – We have a big party on Saturday, and you can’t miss it

11) Corito sano

Another slang term for a party, but something much more relaxed – perhaps hanging out at a friends house, or a small gathering at a bar.

  • Anoche estábamos en un corito sano en casa de mi amiga – Last night we were chilling at my friend’s house

12) Cocaleca

Popcorn seems to have a different name in almost every Latin American country, and DR is no different.

  • Vamos a comprar cocalecas para ver la película – Let’s buy some popcorn to see the movie

13) Matatan

Matatan is slang for somone who is the master of something, or is hierarchically above others (i.e. the boss).

  • Mi madre es la matatan en la cocina. Nadie cocina mejor que ella – My mother is the master chef. Nobody cooks better than her

14) Vaina

This one is common in many Spanish speaking countries and simply means a “thing”, which is good to know should you forget the correct word for something.

  • Tráeme esa vaina que tienes ahí – Bring me that thing that you have there

15) En olla

This Dominican Republic slang translates as “in the pot”, but is used to say that you don’t have any money, or you’re broke.

  • No puedo comprar esos zapatos ahora, estoy en olla – I can’t buy those shoes right now, I’m broke.

16) Deguabinao

When you are tired or exhausted, this is the word you need to express that feeling.

  • No quiero ir a trabajar, me siento deguabinao – I don’t wanna go to work, I feel really tired

17) Dar bola

This literally translates as “to give balls”, but is used to say that you are going to give someone a ride.

(we never claimed that Dominican Republic slang made any sense)

  • ¿Puedes darme bola hasta mi trabajo mañana? – Can you give me a ride to my work tomorrow?

18) Colmado

Another word for a little grocery store that you can find in almost every neighbourhood.

  • Hey, ve al colmado y trae algo de pan – Hey, go to the grocery store and bring some bread

19) Concho

Dominican Republic slang for a taxi.

  • Voy a llamar un concho para ir al aeropuerto – I’m going to call a taxi to go to the airport

20) Carajito, carajita

Slang for a kid who is acting a little loko – maybe after too many glasses of coca-cola.

  • Dile al carajito que se baje de la mesa – Tell the boy to get off the table

21) Disparate

Slang for someone who is talking nonsense.

  • Ya estás borracho y estás hablando solo disparates – You’re drunk and you are just talking nonsense.

22) Piña

Yes, piña means pineapple, but it’s also Dominican Republic slang for a street fight.

  • Se cayeron a piña en la esquina – There was a street fight in the corner

23) Papi chulo

Used by some DR locals to describe a handsome man.

  • Anoche salí con un chico que estaba bien papi chulo – Last night I went out with this really handsome guy

24) Zafacón

Another word for a trash can.

  • Bota esa vaina en el zafacón – Throw that thing in the trash can

25) Hablador

Dominican Republic slang for someone who is very chatty, or likes to gossip.

  • No me gusta que estés con ella, es muy habladora – I don’t like you being with her, she’s a very gossipy girl

26) Ajumao

What happens when you drink too many frías at a coro? Yep, you guessed it.

  • Anoche estaba muy ajumao – Last night I was really drunk

27) Pique

This one can be heard in other Spanish speaking countries, and used when something bothers you or makes you angry.

  • Lo que ella me dijo, me dió un pique horrible – What she said to me, really pissed me off

28) Bultero

A person who brags about themselves, or the things they own.

  • Ese hombre es muy bultero, siempre está presumiendo – That man is a braggart. He is always showing off

29) Dique

And finally, a slang term that either express “yeah right” or  “supposedly”.

  • El dique viene con nosotros esta noche a la fiesta – He supposedly comes with us tonight to the party

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